In this article, we’ll be discussing the website Feedly.com, its rise to internet stardom and current popularity, how to optimize your WordPress feed or feeds for Feedly, how to add your content to Feedly, and how to use Feedly to get your website more traffic.
If you haven’t joined Feedly yet, I highly recommend giving it a try!
What is Feedly?
Feedly is a news aggregator application for web browsers and mobile devices running iOS or Android. It compiles news feeds from a variety of online sources/websites for the user to customize and share with others. Basically, you can add a whole bunch of feeds to your feedly, and even categorize them. You then just click the all posts or a category to see all the recent posts in that category. Clicking a post allows you to read the feed excerpt (which could be the entire article) and then to either go to the site to read the post, or you can click read, save for later, or just click out of the post.
How did it become popular?
There used to be an application known as Google Reader which was hugely popular. In March 2013, Google announced that they would close Google Reader. After the announcement from Google, Feedly gained 500,000 users practically overnight. By May 2013, Feedly had 12 million users.
It isn’t clear how many users Feedly has today, but the number is somewhere north of 15 million and it could be a lot more. They recently announced that they now have over 50,000 premium members (Feedly works on a freemium model). Feedly is the 245th largest website in the US (on June 22, 2015).
How much traffic does Feedly send?
It is difficult to give an exact estimate of how much traffic Feedly sends, but the general answer is a lot. In May 2015, Feedly had 116 million visits that visited 5.73 pages on average, with an on page time of over 8 minutes. 30% of that traffic was in the United States.
Just browsing through different websites on SimilarWeb.com, I’ve found that tons of sites have Feedly as a top 5 referral source. It sits up there with Facebook as one of the biggest referrers. Some sites get upwards of 80% of their traffic from Feedly, which is a huge amount.
The category that seems to work best for Feedly is news type sites, but it really is so simple to setup Feedly that there is no reason not to do so regardless of your site’s category.
How to optimize your feed for Feedly
In WordPress, all you have to do to optimize for feedly is to go to dashboard > settings > reading and change the feed option to a large number (I set mine to 100). You also want to be sure that you are using excerpts rather than full text for your feed (that is an option set on the same page). You should use excerpts so that users who find your article on Feedly can read a bit of it but then have to click through to your site to read the rest. Basically, if you don’t use excerpts, Feedly users don’t have to go to your site.
Some other things to consider for how your feed displays in Feedly are image size and quality and also your author name. You really want the image to be rectangular (wider than it is tall) and of really high quality. For your author name, just be sure not to use your WordPress username. Instead, set your profile to display your “Nickname” publicly and make that name different than your username.
How to add your content to Feedly
To add content to Feedly, you just need a Feedly account. Sign in, and from the top left choose “Add content” (see screenshot above). There you type in your website’s url or feed url (on WordPress, this looks like www.yoursite.com/feed). You then can hit the add button next to the result to add your site’s feed to your feedly.
Be sure to mark the feed as “must read” as this helps your content get found, shared, and basically marked as important on Feedly. Tagging your posts might also help them to get found if you are tagging them into existing categorical tags like #webdesign, #wordpress, #seo, etc.
Using Feedly to get traffic
By now you should have a feedly account and have your feed optimized and added. For your feed to take off, you just need to keep writing great content and be sure to tag it in Feedly. There really isn’t much you can do to make your feed take off, but there are a few things. You could claim your feedly hastag. There also is a way to add a follow on feedly button to your site. Beyond that, it is just kind of a waiting game.
While you are hanging out on Feedly working on your content, you might as well use your feedly account to follow other related blogs and get comment links and referrals from them. To do this, just add feeds to your Feedly. You then will see recent articles in your Feedly account, along with a time stamp. If you hang out on Feedly, you can see new articles right away when they come out.
If you see a new article, go read it and write a good quality comment on the article that links back to some of your comment. This can be a great way to get referrals, especially if your comment is number one and it leads the reader to want to click your link. Longer, detailed comments that make an argument and then just provide a link as a source or as proof seem to work best.
You should now have an understanding of what Feedly is, how to both optimize your content and add your content to Feedly, and how to use Feedly to get web traffic. For additional tips on how to get web traffic, along with other topics like working with WordPress, SEO, and content marketing, please subscribe to our mailing list!