Mar 13 2008

Why Should You Encourage Your Readers to Subscribe?

Bloggers often tell you HOW you can increase your subscribers, but not why you should. Why do RSS subscribers matter? Why does John Chow mention that he has so many subscribers every week?

Chris from Wat da Wat asked this question about encouraging your rss readers to subscribe on the Bloggeries Forum. I thought I would answer.

Encourage your Readers to Subscribe

RSS Feed ButtonsLoyalty

The first reason definitely has to be for loyalty. Once you get someone to subscribe to your blog, the chances are they will stay subscribed for a while. Getting someone to read your blog, gets them to visit, to comment, and participate.


By getting them loyal to your blog, you can build a relationship with the reader, whether they never visit your blog or not. Getting them involved in your content gets them involved in your website or blog. Many times I’ve gone back on my RSS reader and searched for old posts I’ve read from bloggers. Usually I would then link to the website or post.


If you’ve made the switch from visiting every website to a RSS feed reader you know what I’m talking about. At times I’m sure I have had over 100 blogs I’ve followed in my google reader. It’s a lot easier to keep updated with blogs you like. That offers your reader that ease.


This isn’t as important. Yet blogging, especially blogging for money, is about numbers. RSS readers are valuable. If you decided to sell your website with 1,000 readers compared to 10, it would be worth a lot more.

RSS Feed BoyLikely to Join

A reader that finds your blog from a search engine are likely to click one thing and leave, it may not even be an ad. Unless they subscribe to your blog, you may never have that reader ever come back. A RSS subscriber will click and come back. By building a base from RSS feeds, it is a lot easier to get referrals for different websites you want to promote.

RSS Subscribers

The argument to oppose it can be that you will get less website visits. This is partially true, but you should include those reading your feed. If I had to chose more traffic or more subscribers, I would definitely have to go with the subscribers.

Also mentioned in the forum post, is that a better indicator of your rss feed is the “reach”. Make sure to get a Feedburner Stats Pro (free) account to get the “reach” to be displayed. You can go to your Analyze page of your feedburner feed.

Reach is the total number of people who have taken action, viewed or clicked, on the content in your feed.

Why do you encourage your readers to subscribe?

RSS feed buttons taken from AKoogle

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6 Comments on this post


  1. Tom Ross said:

    Great post. I think that loyalty is definitely more important than numbers. I feel great having a close circle of commenters on my blog. However, growing your RSS subscribers is also very rewarding :)

    I would also bring up the point that people will be far more likely to stick around a website if they see that it has tonnes of subscribers. It’s like an instant mark of quality.

    March 13th, 2008 at 6:06 pm
  2. Zero and Up said:

    Those are all very valid reasons to get people to subscribe. Personally, whenever I have people subscribed to my blog, I know that there are going to be at least that many people who read my post; with that in mind it’s much easier for me to write a high quality post.

    March 13th, 2008 at 6:50 pm
  3. Lee Weber said:

    We’re hoping to build our blog subscription as a means for encouraging people to return to our site. And for getting them to participate.

    March 14th, 2008 at 12:33 am
  4. Chris Austria said:

    Thanks for the credit.

    March 14th, 2008 at 9:02 pm
  5. Barry Welford said:

    I’m with you on this one. Even if they never visit your website, if your RSS news feed has full posts, then you’re making a connection with someone who might never see your thoughts.

    March 16th, 2008 at 7:02 am
  6. Ryan Arnold said:

    Outstanding…thank you for posting this!

    Ryan A.

    Ryan Arnold
    -Arnold Creative

    March 28th, 2008 at 6:11 am


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