Tech Tip Tuesday – FeedBurner

I’ve been thinking about doing something like this for a while now. My time in the actual clay studio is still so intermittent that I just can’t seem to get a lot accomplished. I’ll get there, but it’s slow going for now.

I also thought I’d share some of the knowledge from my ‘other’ life in IT. I read a lot of pottery/art blogs (200?!, jeez, how did -that- happen?? Look for a future tech tip on how I do this without spending all day, or losing my mind.), and occasionally see a tech question or issue pop up. When I can, I try to suggest an answer, or point them in the right direction to a solution.

Yesterday, the question came up about how many subscribers my wife had on her blog. Not an easy question, but there are ways to at least get an idea.  The tool we’re going to look at today is FeedBurner. Yes, it’s by Google, and you’ll need a Google account to use it. Since a lot of the blogs I see are Blogger blogs, shouldn’t be a big deal for most of you. Let’s head on over to feedburner.google.com and get started. Don’t worry, I’m starting out with an easy one here. It’s not hard, and Google actually has pretty good help docs to get you set up.  Here’s my ‘Quick Start’

Step 1- Get your google account and sign in at feedburner.google.com  Done? good.

Step 2 – ‘Burn’ your feed.  (hey, don’t blame me, I didn’t come up with this lingo..)  Just type your blog URL or your feed URL if you happen to know what it is, in the box ‘Burn a feed this instant’  and click [Next]. More than likely, FeedBurner will say that it has found multiple feeds, which one do you want to use?  For Blogger users, the default Atom feed is fine. It should look something like  /feeds/post/default. Make your selection and press [Next]

Now finish up by giving your feed a name. It defaults to your blog title, so you’ll probably just want to leave it as-is. Below that, you’ll see your blogs ‘new’ feed address. You could write this down for later, but theres an easier way. Press [Next].
Now just [right-click] on your feed URL and [Copy link address] or [Copy link location] -depends on your web browser.
You can continue on and set up some additional tracking features, but hey, we’re just getting started with this whole thing, so let’s keep it simple. You can always go back and play with the advanced settings later…
Press the [Skip directly to feed management] link. You should now see your feed listed in your control panel.

Step 3 – Redirect your Blogger feed.
So now, go log into your Blogger account, and go to your Dashboard.  Click the [Settings] tab, and [right-click] [Paste] your feedburner URL into the ‘Post Feed Redirect URL’ box.  While you’re here Make sure the ‘Allow Blog Feeds’ is set to ‘Full’, or at least NOT set to ‘None’ (again, look for more about this in a future TechTip) then click [Save Settings]

You’re done!
You now can check your feed stats by logging in to  feedburner.goggle.com and selecting your feed. If you have multiple sites or blogs, you can set up a feed for each of them and manage them here.
It usually take about a day for things to sync up and data to start coming in, but soon you should start seeing subscription info and other stats in your FeedBurner reports. Poke around a bit, there’s some neat stuff you can find out, some things might surprise you.

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