It is one of the easy features to enable in Sitecore and a quick win if you enable this in your Sitecore clients. Let’s start with a definition from Sitecore:
An RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a web feed that can publish frequently updated material — such as blogs, news headlines, audio, video, and so on — in a standardized format. An RSS feed can contain either the full text of the material or a summarized version, as well as metadata, such as, publishing dates, and authorship.
You have some options in Sitecore to customize the content that you will be exposing as RSS. For instance, you can set which fields you want to have for title, description, date, etc. Take in mind, RSS is meant to be used with content that is changing frequently in time, like news, articles, videos, etc.
Now, let’s talk about the different types of RSS feeds Sitecore has that you can use:
This is the regular RSS feed you might now about, where a user can subscribe to a feed and receive updates from your site and even use a third party app if needed to check for updates on the content. The most popular apps for this in my opinion are: Feedly, NewsBlur and Inoreader.
Client RSS Feed:
This is meant for Sitecore users only and has the intention to provide content updates to editors within the organizations. The main difference with the previous is that this is based on items of Sitecore, where the user subscribed to this feed will get updates on all changes made to an item.
You can even run workflow commands directly from the feed and move the item through the workflow if you have the appropriate permissions. Sitecore provides the following types of client RSS feeds (taken from Sitecore documentation)
Item feeds – keep you up to date on the entire item and are useful for content authors.
Workflow feeds – keep you up to date on the entire workflow and are useful for administrators and super users who have access to every workflow state that the workflow contains.
Workflow state feeds – keep you up to date on this particular workflow state. These client feeds are useful for content authors and managers who only have access to particular workflow states.
- If you create a RSS feed this means all users subscribed to it will be able to see the content since RSS doesn’t support authentication. Be careful of what you select as public content for RSS feeds.
- However, in the case of client RSS feeds, Sitecore will then validate the user is authorized before letting him do any action like change the state of an item in a workflow.
- You can only create a regular RSS feed to an item that has subitems.
- The design of the the RSS (fields to be displayed) can be configured per template, which means you can display different fields per type of content in the feed.