The first thing to do after you join LinContEx is to submit your RSS and Atom feeds so that other members can pick them up, display them on their sites, and start sending you inbound links. Here are a few tips on which feeds to submit and how to find your feed URLs.

First, which feeds should you submit? Considering that the whole point of submitting feeds to LinContEx is to get other members to display them on their sites (unlike a feed directory, there’s no SEO value simply in getting listed here, because the search engines can’t see inside LinContEx), the obvious answer is “submit feeds that other members are likely to want to display on their sites.”

Well, which are those?

First, which feeds are NOT likely to get picked up by other users?

  • A feed that does nothing but promote your products — unless your feed contains their affiliate links, why would they want that on their site?
  • A feed that covers every topic under the sun — our members are looking for feeds containing keyword rich content focused on the topic they’re trying to optimize their sites for (both for their visitors and for the search engines)
  • The feed from a blog that’s generated on auto-pilot — you know the type — those ridiculous blogs built for the sole purpose of cucking in visitors and spitting them out through AdSense

Our members want feeds that are going to enhance their sites.

  • Feeds chock full of relevant information — feeds that teach rather than promote
  • Feeds focused on a single topic — if your blogging software generates category feeds, submit those instead of your main feed (more on that below)
  • Well-written content — content that will make their site look more, not less, professional

How to find your feed URLs (this is what you’re going to submit)

If your blog has a “subscribe” button or link, you can get your feed URL by right-clicking it and selecting “copy link target” or some such thing from the menu that gets displayed. That’ll usually get you your blog’s main feed. But how do you get the URLs for the category feeds I mentioned above?

How do you even know if your blog generates category feeds?

If you’re using WordPress, category feeds are generated automatically. Unless you’re using WordPress’s default permalink style (if your blog post URLs end with “?p=123”, with the number being different for each post), you can find them by clicking one of your category links, copying the URL from your browser’s address bar, and adding “feed/” to it. For example, if your category URL is “http://example.com/blog/category/seo/”, your category feed URL will be “http://example.com/blog/category/seo/feed/”.

That’ll give you the RSS 2.0 version of the feed. To get an Atom feed, just add “atom/” to that, ie. “http://example.com/blog/category/seo/feed/atom/”.

If you’re using the default permalink structure, click the category link and then add “&feed=rss2” or “&feed=atom” to the URL. For example, if your category URL is “http://example.com/blog/?cat=3”, your RSS feed URL will be “http://example.com/blog/?cat=3&feed=rss2”, and your Atom feed URL will be “http://example.com/blog/?cat=3&feed=atom”.

Finally, since I’ve raised the question of RSS and Atom feeds, a few thoughts on which to submit.

  • First, don’t submit both. They both contain the same content, and submitting both will just clog up LinContEx with duplicates.
  • Second, it probably doesn’t make much difference which you submit, so don’t worry about it too much.
  • RSS may be compatible with more old RSS readers and scripts, but any modern feed tools will support both.
  • Finally, if you want my opinion, Atom is the better format. It was designed based on experience learned from RSS, and is much more carefully thought out. (Yeah, I was part of the team that created Atom, so maybe I’m just biased…but don’t think so!)

That’s about all you need to know to start submitting your feeds. Have at it!