Adding RSS subscription link within your blog’s sidebar isn’t enough these days. Yes, those links will get clicked on and you will get some subscribers, but you won’t convert a lot of those visitors into readers.
If you want to convert a high percentage of your visitors into RSS subscribers, here is what you can do:
Offer multiple options
Not everyone uses RSS feed readers. Even web savvy users like me don’t use feed readers. But what everyone uses is email, so a good way to get more subscribers is to offer an email subscription option.
Location, location, location
The location of the link to your RSS feed will play an important factor in how many subscribers you have. Here are a few locations to consider:
- Above the fold – you don’t want to have your readers scroll down to find your RSS feed.
- Sidebar – you can use your sidebar to offer multiple subscription options, such as email.
- Content – right after your blog post and right before your comments you can write a little blurb that convinces people to subscribe to your RSS feed. For example, you could use “Want to be notified when there is new content to read on Quick Sprout? Just enter in your email address and we’ll shoot you an email when there is new content for you to read. Don’t worry, I promise not to spam you or share your information with anyone else.”
If you are willing to pay for services like Aweber, you can drastically increase your subscriber numbers. For example John Chow has gained a large portion of his subscribers through popups and footer ads (which Aweber and Ultimate Footer Ads provide).
If you look at the two images above you’ll notice that John Chow offers something for free to his readers. By offering a free guide or ebook, readers will be more willing to subscribe to your blog.
Play devils advocate
Many of your visitors will be nervous about subscribing to your blog. There are thousands, if not millions of blogs with good content… so why should someone subscribe to your blog?
By creating a list on why people ought to subscribe to your blog, you will be able to convince your visitors into subscribing. Here are some things you should cover in your list:
- List out your subscriber count – If you tell people how many subscribers you have, you’ll be more likely to get more subscribers.
- Use social proof – if you have ever been covered in a newspaper or magazine, make sure you let your readers know. If an authoritative source like the New York Times has something good to say about you, then your visitors will also think you have something good to say.
- Embrace laziness – people are lazy so if you explain how subscribing to your RSS feed will make their life easier, they will be more likely to do so.
- Make a promise and keep it – tell your visitors that you’ll help them do something if they subscribe to your feed. For example, I have promised you and other Quick Sprout readers that I’ll discuss the business mistakes I made so that hopefully you won’t make them.
- Offer something others aren’t willing to – one thing I offer that others aren’t willing to offer is that I respond to every commenter and every reader that emails me. That shows that I am loyal to you and other Quick Sprout reader.
Now if you take everything I mentioned above, you’ll end up having a list similar to this:
If you are reading this, you’re probably leaning towards not subscribing to Quick Sprout. Well, hopefully these 5 reasons will push you towards the other direction.
1. The Press is always right
Well, the Press isn’t always right, but I hope they are when it comes to me. I have been featured in newspapers and magazines like the Wall Street Journal, Entrepreneur, Inc, Business Week, Wired and USA Today. If they think the content I am writing is worth reading, well hopefully you will too.
2. Go with the flow
Over 10,000 readers are subscribing to the Quick Sprout RSS feed. I must be doing something right if they are continually willing to read my content, right?
3. I am dumber than I look
Dumb? That’s right, I am not the smartest person out there. I have made a ton of mistakes that have lost me a lot of money. By subscribing to Quick Sprout you’ll be able to read about my mistakes, learn from them, and hopefully you’ll save yourself from losing a million dollars like I did.
4. There’s nothing wrong with being lazy
I know I don’t blog everyday, so it can be a bit tricky to predict when my next blog post is coming out. If you want to come to the blog everyday to see if there is anything new, by all means do so. But if you want to be lazy, subscribe to the RSS feed and you’ll be notified when I post new content on Quick Sprout.
5. I am always willing to help you out
If you have any questions about business or need help with anything for that matter, I’ll do everything in my powers to help you out. Don’t worry, I am not looking for any sort of financial compensation, I just ask that you follow Quick Sprout and tell all your friends about it.
So now that I have convinced you to subscribe to Quick Sprout, you have a few options.
- If you use an RSS feed reader, you can get the Quick Sprout RSS feed from here.
- If you use email, click here to get the latest Quick Sprout content delivered to your inbox.
Don’t worry, no matter what method you choose, I promise I won’t spam you. And if for some reason you aren’t happy with the content I am writing, you can always unsubscribe.
PS: If you aren’t familiar with RSS and would like to learn what it is, click here.
If you look at Quick Sprout, you’ll notice that I don’t do everything that I mentioned above. It’s because some of those things didn’t work well with this blog. Or it could be that I haven’t gotten to them yet. This means that you need to test things out and find out what works for your blog. Remember, different blogs have different audiences.
And on a final note, feel free to use anything you see on my blog on yours. If you want to copy my “5 Reasons on why you ought to subscribe to Quick Sprout” word for word, by all means do so.