Businesses that are not using feeds today, as part of their marketing and advertising plans, will soon do so, or should thinking of implementing them soon. Although this is a fairly new communications tool it is growing rapidly. The reason is that the information gatherer, consumers, etc., are or will be using >readers to view information. The main reason is that information can be viewed with No Spam, No Junk Mail and No Viruses threats.
Don't worry, if you think you are behind the times, because you are not. People are just starting to get wind of the "Feeds Method" of gathering information. But if you prepare now, there's a good cahnce you may be well ahead of your competition.
The good news is that feeds are good for any size business, even if you don't have a web site. Companies such as ours provides for any size business, online or offline, big or small, to get their information to their customers safely.
The big reason feeds are becoming so popular is that there is no transfer of information to the user's computer. Unlike e-mail there is no data sent to the user's hard drive. The user cannot be spammed or sent junk mail or download a virus using a feeds reader. The feeds reader user, your customers etc., controls the information they view.
Business finds it exciting because people will use the feeds reader to gather information and stay updated on products, services and information they have an interest in. Some businesses that have been using mailing lists, have been frustrated in the last couple of years with the increase of spam and junk mail filters. Many of their customers simple do not receive or read the messages sent because the filters read the mail as Spam or Junk Mail and most times deleted.
As well small, and home based businesses, can now get equal billing with the world's largest companies. On our site we list the smallest company with the biggest. It's up to the user which feeds they enter into their reader to view.
How It Works
Consumers, or web surfers use a reader to view feeds. Let's say a consumer visits your web site and you have a feed for them to use if they wish. You would list the feed URL for them to copy and a small icon theat indicates if it is an RSS or XML file etc. They copy and paste the feed URL into their reader an view you feed. The feed has one or more items. each item has a title, such as "ABC Home Decor", a small description such as "Visit our store or web site to get 40% off all in stock furniture", and a link to the page you want your visitors to view on your web site or if you don't have a web site a page we would provide you.
The feed itself, that can contain one or many items, is a basic file. It is a RSS or XML file, that is stored on your server or on ours. The file is read with a reader by the consumer. The file is not a web page but similar to an e-mail message without the data transfer to the user's computer.
You can update the feed 24/7, thus having the most up to date information on hand for the viewer of the feed. Whether you run a large online or offline corporation, a small business in a small town, or a home business, you can update your customers and potential customers immediately and 24/7.
You can have a free reader customized with your feed included that you can give away, even if you don;t have a web site.
The Bottom Line
Really you don't need to know how feeds work, unless you are going to do it yourself. Simply understand that feeds are an exciting new communication tool that anyone can use. They are safe, and can be updated in real time. Feeds are easy to add to readers and easy to implement on your web site or from your offline business. They are something you should seriously consider for your business.
Try out feeds and how they work with our free reader at 1feed.com.
About the Author
Bob Power has been an Internet entrepreneur for longer than he would like to remember. He is the president of 1Feed.com and Clubrss.com, both of which is deducated to the education of feeds.
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