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I have a small blog. Now, I have created an rss.xml. I put that in the root of the site, on the server. Should I do anything to make search engines like Google, Technorati, Yahoo! be able to find it?

(By the way I already have a sitemap.xml and added it to the Search Console)

  • It doesn't really matter if they find it. It won't help rankings. If you already have an XML sitemap, it won't get your new content discovered faster either. – Stephen Ostermiller Feb 24 '17 at 18:20
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Google recommends adding any rss feeds into webmaster for optimal crawling. An rss feed generally is a list of updates, and google can use this information to find new pages faster.

Here is a blog entry from google: https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2014/10/best-practices-for-xml-sitemaps-rssatom.html

  • The document says "ping Google after you update it". I do not understand, how should I ping? – Nrc Feb 25 '17 at 9:51
  • The document also says "using PubSubHubbub. The hub will propagate the content of your feed to all interested parties (RSS readers, search engines, etc.)" The link of the PubSubHubbub is broken and I do not understand how to use that. – Nrc Feb 25 '17 at 9:53
  • I would consider that optional, but that's only an opinion. – Aaron Walerstein Feb 25 '17 at 16:07
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There is no reason to assume that consumers would look at /rss.xml when they are looking for a feed. Feeds don’t have a reserved filename/location.

You would typically link your feeds from relevant pages, by providing a/area/link elements with the alternate link type and a type value of application/rss+xml (or application/atom+xml in case of Atom feeds).

If you are using a link element, you might want to add a visible link in addition.
If you offer multiple feeds, note that the order matters.

(Which consumers are interested in your feeds is a different question, of course. If a consumer is interested, but not using the standardized HTML links, they would hopefully document an alternative way.)

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You should include meta tags in the <head> section of your pages with feeds:

<link rel='alternate' type='application/rss+xml' title='RSS' href='http://example.com/rss.xml'>
<link rel='alternate' type='application/atom+xml' title='Atom 0.3' href='https://example.com/feed.atom'>

This allows the feeds to be found. Some browsers make an RSS icon visible to users when there are meta tags like that. Search engine bots know about those tags and can find feeds from them.

  • Should I have a different xml for rss and for atom? – Nrc May 15 '17 at 13:52
  • Just one format of feed is fine. Choose the right meta tag for the format you have. – Stephen Ostermiller May 15 '17 at 13:52

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