This is the first in a series of how-tos that I’m writing up for various blogging subjects. If you have anything you’d like me to untangle, let me know. If I know how to do it I’ll post about it; if not I’m willing to take a shot at learning how to do it, and then post about it.
Many of you have seen that you can now integrate your Blogger feed with the services of Feedburner so that you can get detailed stats about your blog’s feed. This can also be known by a variety of terms, like merging your feeds, or (the logical choice IMO) combining the feeds, or (officially) “Post Feed Redirect”. To make things simpler, I’ll just use integrate or its variant when talking about it.
While both sites have how-tos on putting it all together, it might get a bit, well “heady” if you’re not used to working with technical instructions. What I plan to do is show you how to do it, with screenshots, and using straightforward English.
In order to use this service, you will need to have registered your blog’s current feed with Feedburner. To do this, you need to go to the Feedburner homepage, and put your website’s address in the big yellow box. If you are a podcaster, then you should click the box saying that “I am a podcaster”. Click Next » to proceed.
You will then be taken to the “Identify Feed Source” page - basically, it tells you the feeds that were found on your page, and you can choose the one you want to use. For Blogger blogs, you can just stick with the first option and then click Next » to move on.
Now, you will be able to give your feed a title; it will automatically fill the Feed Title in with the title of your Blog. Also, you can customize the address that will be for your feed - generally, you should keep it as the title of your blog, or you can change it to something shorter if you wish. At the bottom of the form, if you do not already have a FeedBurner account, this is the time to create one. Simply fill the fields and then click Activate Feed » to put your feed on FeedBurner.
Now, your blog’s feed is on FeedBurner. You will see this screen which has your feed’s address, which you will need for integrating with Blogger. Also, you now have the option to add in stats to your feed, or move directly to managing your feed. I’d just go ahead and click Next » to add in the stats, so that you don’t have to go back and do it later.
This is the Enhance Your Stats page - here, you can add in options for tracking how many clicks you’re receiving on your feed with Clickthroughs. Note that this will change the formatting of the address in posts from “http://yourblog.blogspot.com/2007/” etc. to “http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/FeedTitle…” etc. You don’t need to worry about the enclosure downloads section unless you’re a podcaster. Also, and this is something new for FeedBurner, the Pro functions are now free, so you can add them or not. What you choose on this page is up to you, but when you’re done click Next » to move on.
There’s a lot more that you can do with FeedBurner; feel free to check them out. You can change pretty much whatever you want - how your feed’s page looks, get the code for the RSS button you see all over the web. This is something that I’d recommend you do right away - it’s under Publicize, then Chicklet Chooser. You’ll be able to add it directly to your blog from FeedBurner if you’re on Blogger or Typepad.
Right now, however, what we want to do is integrate it with Blogger, and it’s a fairly simple process. From your Dashboard, go into your Blog’s settings, then into Site Feed.
Now, you will see the screen below. If you’ve worked on your feed before, you will be familiar with the Allow Blog Feed and Feed Item Footer items. What we’re looking at now is the Post Feed Redirect URL line. All you need to do now is paste or type in your FeedBurner address in the line and click Save Settings.
And that’s it! Your Blogger feed will now be redirected to your FeedBurner feed.
Important note: Any of your readers on bloglines might notice that your feed will start to go nuts - I don’t know why that happens, but it has been happening. Hopefully they get that problem sorted soon. Otherwise, everything will be good to go.
Update, 2nd August: There is currently an issue with the integration that is causing some major problems. Blogger are aware of the issue and have issued a work-around -
The workaround for now is to add an “?alt=atom” parameter to the feed URL in your FeedBurner settings.
Essentially, that just means that, in my case, the feed URL I am now using for Feedburner is - http://www.sephyroth.net/feeds/posts/default?alt=atom - you just add the ?alt=atom to the end of your feed’s address.