As of today, Google Reader is no longer. But luckily, competing RSS services have developed platforms designed to ease the transition for former Reader users.
What is RSS you ask? Rich Site Summary, or RSS, is a format for delivering regularly changing web content. Many news sites, blogs, and other online publications syndicate their content as an RSS feed in an attempt to deliver immediate updates to those who subscribe to their outlet.
RSS can be a wonderful resource for readers who regularly use the web to stay informed, because the feed provides an orgnazed and convenient way to view the latest content, and current social news. By downloading an RSS reader and adding the sites you frequent most, you can save an immense amount of time because the you does not have to visit each site individually.
Google Reader has been a particularly popular arena for keeping tabs on dozens of social, business, and news websites, and now millions of readers are hoping to find a replacement service.
Fortunately, there are several comparable alternatives to help people track updates from all kinds of websites relating to their jobs, hobbies, or other personal interests. My three favorite are Feedly, Newsblur, and Pulse.
These platforms allow Google Reader users to transfer their feeds over effortlessly by logging in with their Gmail username and password. It is also simple to add new sources to your feeds.
- Feedly is by far the most popular Google Reader alternative. It has a clean, beautiful interface that you can tweak to work almost exactly like the Google Reader. Its search tool is very effective: you can type in a blog name, a URL or even a topic and get a list of feeds to choose from.
Once you install the Feedly app on your Chrome or Safari browser, it will display a small, transparent button in the lower right corner of your desktop screen. Whenever you browse to a new site that you want to add to your Feedly account, just click that button and it will prompt you to add that site.
- Newsblur feels a bit more like a desktop reader. You can see stories on the original site, create categories and tags that help highlight the stories you want most, and even create a “blurblog” of all your favorite stories for others to check out.
- If you’re more of a visual person, Pulse maybe the perfect platform for you. It features a beautiful photo-grid style layout with live tiles that change as new articles are posted to the websites you follow. The site is somewhat reminiscent of the way Pinterest looks because it is almost exclusively image driven. You click on an image, the article expands in front of your eyes and you are able to read a short summary of the article and then decide whether to follow a link to the original piece. Pulse also offers a very effective search tool for finding and adding other feeds. You can organize feeds into categories, and it’s easy to mark the ones you’ve read or the ones you want to save for later.
I wish you luck in finding a new reader platform! While there are plenty more, these are a few of the most popular, and the ones I’d recommend checking out first. If you are ready to give up on RSS feeds altogether, you can follow all of your favorite sites, blogs, and news outlets on Twitter, Google+, and Facebook. Whatever your social content management needs, you’re sure to find something out there that works for you!
By Sasha Novikov | Creatine Marketing