RSS Feeds for categories?

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Is it possible?

I want to create RSS Feeds for specific subject articles on my site, but don't know how.

Really, I have 2 questions.

1) If I use the blog platform:

And if I categorize articles based on topic or niche, is there a way to create an RSS feed for each category? Right now, the way WP feeds work, is that when people sign up to my blog feed, they will hear about all of the topics discussed on my site. I don't want that. I want people to be able to sign up for topics. So can I do it and if so, how do I do it?

2) If I use a static site created in, say, Front Page:

The rest of the question applies. Can I create an RSS Feed for people to sign up for specific topic articles on a traditional web page? If so, how? I wasn't aware you could use RSS Feeds on an HTML page. I thought they only worked on a blog platform or something similar.

Thanks for your help.

Sylvia

BTW: I'm not very tech savvy, so layman's terms please.
#categories #feeds #rss
  • Profile picture of the author theIMgeek
    Hi Sylvia,

    Your correct that you do need some sort of "blogging software" to make RSS feeds. (well, technically, RSS is just a specially formatted text file that can be made with anything... but practically speaking, it's difficult to make it for a static HTML site)

    Now, if you're using the latest WordPress, it will already be making feeds for your categories. For my blog I can go to a category index page (theimgeek.com/tutorial/) and just add "feed" to the end... theimgeek.com/tutorial/feed/ and there it is!

    What I would recommend is creating a single page where you provide a link to each category feed and suggest your readers subscribe to the ones that interest them.

    Hopefully that helps! If you need clarification, please ask.

    -Ryan
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    • Profile picture of the author sylviad
      Thanks Ryan.

      So, I just create the categories in WP and then go into each category, take the URL and add /feed to the end?

      I've been looking at some RSS material and I keep seeing that you can create RSS on a regular site as well as blogs. Some examples they give are the news media sites which, as far as I know, are static sites not blog platforms. They provide news feeds so you can add news bites to your site.

      Since starting this thread, I came across a book explaining RSS, how to create your own feed, which ends up giving you a file that looks like this:

      <?xml version="1.0"?>
      <rss version="2.0">
      <channel>
      <title>ACME DreamProducts Corporation </title>
      <description>
      Out of this world products, available only at ACME </description>
      <link>http://dreamproducts.com</link>
      <item>
      <title>ACME Super Duper Glue</title>
      <description>
      Sticks everything together except broken hearts
      </description>
      <link>
      http://dreamproducts.com/acmeglue.html
      </link>
      </item>
      <item>
      <title>ACME Do-It-Yourself Space Shuttle Kit</title>
      <description>
      ACME in association with NASA proudly presents...
      </description>
      <link>
      http://dreamproducts.com/acmespaceshuttle.html
      </link>
      </item>
      </channel>
      </rss>
      We shall save the file with extensions as .xml or .rss. Both will work fine. Let us save the file as acme.rss

      You also want to make sure that people who come to your web site see that you provide a feed. It's very common to post a link to the feed somewhere on the home page of a web site. If you have a dedicated news page, you may want to put it there, as well.

      You can link to your feed with an ordinary HTML link. However, many sites use a small orange XML icon to link to the feed. Some sites also use blue RSS icon.
      I'm not clear on what I'm supposed to do with this info. :confused:

      Sylvia
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  • Profile picture of the author theIMgeek
    Adding /feed/ to the end of your category pages SHOULD result in a feed for that category, assuming that your Wordpress is set-up using "permalinks". (aka "pretty URLs")

    Just give it a test by typing the supposed feed address in and seeing what your browser says. It should either show you the RSS feed code, or ask how you want to subscribe to the feed. If it comes up with a "page missing" message then I guess it's not set-up the same for your Wordpress site.

    ----------

    In the case of news sites, while they may not be standard blogs they are not "static" sites. They are, similar to Wordpress blogs, a "dynamic" site which essentially means that the content is stored in a database and displayed using templates. (as opposed to a "static" site where each and every page is actually a separate HTML file)

    Creating an RSS feed from any dynamic site is relatively easy, because it's taking the same database content and just displaying it through a RSS feed template.

    If your site is truly static (a collection of HTML files) then your RSS feed would have to be a separate file that would be edited and updated by hand with each new article. Not very practical at all.

    I'm hoping this makes some sense. I'm trying to explain some pretty high-tech ideas here as simply as possible.

    -Ryan
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  • Profile picture of the author HorseStall
    Is your current system in a database? If so you can use SQL2RSS to create RSS feeds you can filter the feeds based on keywords details can be found at SQL2RSS Converts MySQL to RSS Feeds
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  • Profile picture of the author seopress
    Originally Posted by sylviad View Post

    Is it possible?

    I want to create RSS Feeds for specific subject articles on my site, but don't know how.

    Really, I have 2 questions.

    1) If I use the blog platform:

    And if I categorize articles based on topic or niche, is there a way to create an RSS feed for each category? Right now, the way WP feeds work, is that when people sign up to my blog feed, they will hear about all of the topics discussed on my site. I don't want that. I want people to be able to sign up for topics. So can I do it and if so, how do I do it?

    2) If I use a static site created in, say, Front Page:

    The rest of the question applies. Can I create an RSS Feed for people to sign up for specific topic articles on a traditional web page? If so, how? I wasn't aware you could use RSS Feeds on an HTML page. I thought they only worked on a blog platform or something similar.

    Thanks for your help.

    Sylvia

    BTW: I'm not very tech savvy, so layman's terms please.
    Sylvia,
    If you use WP there is no reason to manually create feed links by placing /feed after the category index. Simply use
    <?php wp_list_categories('orderby=name&show_count=1&feed =RSS'); ?>
    in the WP template where you want to display a list of links to all categories.

    There are many possibilities with the wp_list_categories function so that you can customize it in whatever way suits your needs best - more information is here.
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    • Profile picture of the author sylviad
      Originally Posted by Ian Varnava View Post

      Sylvia,

      Read the below linked post by Kim Roach... The first part is about RSS feeds and I think it may help you with what you're trying to do.

      BuzzBlogger.com » How to Become a Link Building Ninja
      Thank you Ian. That article is very useful. Seems to me I did read something along those lines while researching this issue - creating one big feed for a bunch of feeds. Probably on one of the feed creation service sites. I've seen so many now, I can't recall what I saw where.

      Should have taken notes, huh? :rolleyes:

      Sylvia
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      • Profile picture of the author jamesg3
        There are a few plugins that will do this for you. The best one needs a little modification to the source of the plugin but it works flawlessly and solidly for as many cats as you can throw into it. I have replicated this function 6 times and I ddi not have any problems with it. I can help if you need, let me know. Thanks.
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        • Profile picture of the author sylviad
          jamesg3...

          What is the plugin? Is it free or paid?

          Thanks.

          Sylvia
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          • Profile picture of the author jamesg3
            Hi Sylvia. I noticed that dassad mentione the plugin category-specific-rss-feed-menu/. This will do most of the work for you. It really depends on how you need the feeds to separate and if you need a separate feed page for each separated category feed on its own. I mean to say, do you wish to have feeds separated and subscribable by a link that will only display that feed category and be subscribable to that feed only for the category of intrest? If so, then you have to force it to submit to your will. We do this all of the time and its not very hard to do at all. You manually make links and add a bit of code to your plugin. May I have the link to your current site please? I can pull the source and see what it will take for you to do this.
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            • Profile picture of the author sylviad
              Originally Posted by jamesg3 View Post

              Hi Sylvia. I noticed that dassad mentione the plugin category-specific-rss-feed-menu/. This will do most of the work for you. It really depends on how you need the feeds to separate and if you need a separate feed page for each separated category feed on its own. I mean to say, do you wish to have feeds separated and subscribable by a link that will only display that feed category and be subscribable to that feed only for the category of intrest? If so, then you have to force it to submit to your will. We do this all of the time and its not very hard to do at all. You manually make links and add a bit of code to your plugin. May I have the link to your current site please? I can pull the source and see what it will take for you to do this.
              Yes, I did take a look at that plug-in. Just thought you might have a better one in mind. I noticed that one only had 3 stars.

              But you are right. I want each category subscribable, so people only get feeds for those posts only, and not every post I put on my site.

              I'm in the process of setting up a separate blog on one of my sites to do what I want, so there's not much to see at the moment. It's here:
              http://natural-anxiety-remedies.com/syndicatedcontent/. This is the blog where I'd want to do those feeds.

              You can get a better idea of the categories by going to the main part of the site: http://natural-anxiety-remedies.com/

              Sylvia
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              • Profile picture of the author jamesg3
                Yes, that's easy enough, its just time consuming to explain the process in detail that would get you threw. I think that you will need a plug in modified and direct links to those feeds as standalone's. Um, let me make you a video tutorial. I will host t on my demo server and provide you the link. This way you can see exactly how its done. Do you have enough php knowledge to copy a couple of calls to the right places and ensure that they are complet and compatible? The biggest factor will be how your theme is coded and the version of php used for that theme. Let me know and I will base it around your knowledge. thanks Sylvia
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                • Profile picture of the author sylviad
                  Actually, I don't know much at all about .php, other than having peeked into the theme editor a few times to set things like font or color. And I think once I added a script for Google Analytics or something.

                  That's about it.

                  Sylvia
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                  • Profile picture of the author jamesg3
                    Well, with that I would have to say that your probably going to have to get some prices from developers to do this for you. ( I'm trying to not promote myself here because ther are lots of good developers around, lol.) Otherwise, I would just look thru the Wp plugins depository and see if you can search by term to find one that will specifically meet your needs. I will look threw them now to see if I can easily recognize one for you. Give me an hour or 2 ok.
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                    • Profile picture of the author sylviad
                      Thank you. Looking forward to what you find. Maybe I'll end up with that one dassad recommended.

                      I'd like to have a feed button for each category, if that's possible. If I create a working feed, I could always link it to a feed image button. Not sure yet what they'll see when they go into a Category or how they can sign up for it.

                      Still trying to figure it all out. This is all new territory for me.

                      Sylvia
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                      • Profile picture of the author jamesg3
                        Yes exactly, here is a simple example. Use the category feeds plugin. Once you have it all set up and configured properly. Go to each of the feeds in your browser and simply copy the link from your browser bar and use that as your link. Use a sidebar text widget and add your code and images like this. PS you could even use the custom menu feature in Wp and just assign the links to them and use them in a sidebar. Here is an example using Li tags for a menu type effect with graphics effect

                        Code:
                        <ul><li><a href="linktoyourfeed"><img src="http"//linktoyourimage"></li>
                        <li><a href="linktoyourfeed"><img src="http"//linktoyourimage"></li><li><a href="linktoyourfeed"><img src="http"//linktoyourimage"></li></ul></a>
                        or "without Li tags / just using break tags to stack them like this
                        Code:
                        <a href="linktoyourfeed"><img src="http"//linktoyourimage"><br /><a href="linktoyourfeed"><img src="http"//linktoyourimage">
                        And that should do it for you easily and for freeeeeee, lol!
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                        • Profile picture of the author sylviad
                          Sorry, I was out walking the dog so just read your post.

                          The first question that comes to mind is, "why do I need the plugin?" if I can simply create a list in a widget, complete with feeds? Or does the plugin make the feeds work? But then, WP already has the ability to make feeds work, right?

                          I notice that with the theme I'm using, it doesn't create a "subscribe" button feed. How do I make that.... oh, never mind. I think I saw a plugin for that somewhere.

                          Sylvia
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                          • Profile picture of the author jamesg3
                            you would need the plug in to separate the feeds unless you wish to manually code it. The linking structure i listed above only takes care of navigating you members to those feeds. They still need to be separated and made to be stand alone feeds.
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  • Profile picture of the author dassad
    sylviad - For wordpress you can use this plugin: WordPress › Category Specific RSS feed Subscription « WordPress Plugins

    This generates new feeds for all your categories.
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    • Profile picture of the author sylviad
      Thank you everyone for all your great feedback.

      I'll look into each of them, especially the plug-in. I like things easy.

      Since several of my sites ARE true HTML static pages, it sounds like it'd be easier if I install a WP blog on each of them just to offer my articles through feeds.

      I'm not exactly excited about the idea of having to create a feed for each and every article, which is what I figured would be the case if I tried to do HTML page feeds. Way too much work.

      SEOPress...

      What WP template would I put that in? The theme has several possible page options - post.php? page.php? etc. I'll check that link now.

      If you use WP there is no reason to manually create feed links by placing /feed after the category index. Simply use
      <?php wp_list_categories('orderby=name&show_count=1&feed =RSS'); ?>
      in the WP template where you want to display a list of links to all categories.

      There are many possibilities with the wp_list_categories function so that you can customize it in whatever way suits your needs best - more information is here.
      Sylvia
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    • Profile picture of the author sylviad
      Originally Posted by dassad View Post

      sylviad - For wordpress you can use this plugin: WordPress › Category Specific RSS feed Subscription « WordPress Plugins

      This generates new feeds for all your categories.
      OK. I installed and set the plugin, but it doesn't list the category RSS feeds. It only shows the heading: Category Specific RSS.

      I set everything in the plugin (categories with RSS URL) and tested the url. It comes up with the invite page to subscribe to the feed, so the feed is right. Then, I created a post and saved it under one category to test it, but it doesn't show up.

      According to the plugin site, it's Compatible up to: 2.9.2. I haven't upgraded to 3.1.1 yet and can't figure out what version I am using. Where can I find that? It seems to me it used to be at the bottom of the page, but it's not. It just says to upgrade.

      I really like this plugin. If it worked.

      Sylvia
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  • Profile picture of the author azzuhro
    nice share....
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  • Profile picture of the author BobLanchastero
    I have been taking a look at some RSS material & I keep seeing that you can generate RSS on a regular site as well as blogs. Some examples they give are the news media sites which, as far as I do know, are static sites not weblog platforms. They provide news feeds so you can add news bites to your site.
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  • Profile picture of the author AndrewKlyO
    Some examples given are the sites of the media as far as I know, are not static sites blog platforms. They provide news sources so you can add news bites to your site. The structure that links I mentioned above only deals with navigation to members that feeds them. They still have to be separated and forced to be independent feeds.
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  • Profile picture of the author ButterflyGarden
    You can manually create RSS feeds (without any type of blogging software) using software like FeedForAll Create RSS Feeds, Edit and Publish News Feeds with Software
    Another option is if you have all the articles in a database you could use a script like SQL2RSS to dynamically create and update the feed SQL2RSS Converts MySQL to RSS Feeds

    HTH
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