The most notable difference between a blog and a website is the RSS feed.
A very practical application of the RSS is to feed it to a free feed management service such as Google’s Feedburner.
Whenever you publish a new blog post, the RSS feed also gets updated.
Feedburner constantly polls for new content from your feed. As soon as Feedburner sees new content on your feed, it emails all of your blog subscribers on your behalf letting them know that you’ve got something new on your blog.
Here we’ll step you through the process of how to set up a Feedburner subscription form and email notification.
Step 1: Login to Feedburner
You will be prompted to login to your Google Account. If you don’t have one, create one.
Step 2: Set up your feed
Once logged in, you’ll be asked to enter a RSS feed address. If you have a WordPress blog, it should be http://yourdomain.com/feed.
If you are not sure, simply enter your blog address for auto-discovery:
Next, Feedburner will auto-populate your blog title and choose a feed URL for you. You can simply go with what it populates for you:
Now that Feedburner has your feed set up, click on the “Skip directly to feed management” link next to the “Next” button. You can always come back to set up your podcast (if you are podcasting) and traffic analytics:
Next, click on the “Publicize” tab to get to the email subscription service:
Click on “Email Subscriptions” service, and activate this service by clicking on the “Activate” button:
You will be given a subscription form HTML code to publish on your blog. Copy and paste that code:
Step 3: Publish your subscription form on your blog
Usually you’ll find the blog subscription form on most other blogs located “above the fold” in the sidebar. Somewhere obvious and not hidden.
To put this subscription form on the top of the sidebar, you’ll have to either use a Text widget (from your dashboard, Appearance -> Widgets) or modify your sidebar.php theme file (Appearance -> Editor).
Alternatively, here are a few plugin to help you with putting a Feedburner subscription form.
The standard text that goes on the subscription form is “Enter your email address:” so be sure to change it to something more compelling such as “Please enter your email address below to be notified whenever I post something new on this blog:”
Here is a sample HTML code where the text is highlighted:
<form style=”border:1px solid #ccc;padding:3px;text-align:center;” action=”http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify” method=”post” target=”popupwindow” onsubmit=”window.open(‘http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=howtostartablogforfunnprofit’, ‘popupwindow’, ‘scrollbars=yes,width=550,height=520′);return true”><p>Enter your email address:</p><p><input type=”text” style=”width:140px” name=”email”/></p><input type=”hidden” value=”howtostartablogforfunnprofit” name=”uri”/><input type=”hidden” name=”loc” value=”en_US”/><input type=”submit” value=”Subscribe” /><p>Delivered by <a href=”http://feedburner.google.com” target=”_blank”>FeedBurner</a></p></form>
Here is an example subscription form and what it will look like:
Show off your blog!
Got Feedburner subscription box on your blog? Make a comment below with a brief description of what your blog is all about, and your blog URL to show it off! Hope to see you in the 100K subscriber Hall of Fame