Tech Corner – Web Marketing Tips: What is RSS Syndication?

One of the newer technologies in the area of web publishing is the use of RSS or ‘Really Simple Syndication”.  An RSS ‘feed’ is like a mini database stored on your site, that provides a list of what information is on your site in a format that can be easily searched or exported for use by news aggregators.  RSS ‘feeds’ are created by webmasters or blogging or web content software as a way of promoting the information on the site. Here’s an example of what an RSS feed looks like for the Lesbian Quarterly website.

How does this bring more people to my website? Well, news aggregators use the RSS feeds to help you promote the information on your site, and bring people to you to read more.

News aggregators are part of services like iGoogle and ‘My Yahoo’, where people using these customized web pages (known as portals) can select the topics they’d like to read about. The service then goes out and searches the available RSS feeds to find information on those topics and display it on the page. Typically the person can read the title and a short excerpt, and then click on a link to go to the original site for the rest. If you provide useful information on your site and in your RSS feed, it can be a good way to draw additional readers to your site.

The LQ website contains a number of features that get their information from aggregated news. Below is an example. The linked articles below are from several websites including and lesbian events in canada from Yahoo upcoming events (unfortunately, most are in Ontario).

-Sophia Kelly is a website, database and business consultant based in Vancouver