We're about two and a half months away from July 1, 2013, when Google Reader is due to shut down. By now, many bloggers have switched to Feedly, The Old Reader, or other alternatives to consume their news if they were using it in the first place.
However, one critical misstep is not setting up a plan to retain the readers that are subscribing to your blog. I've already replaced my RSS Reader with Feedly because the switching cost was low as it allowed me to import my Google Reader settings automatically. Not many others possess that feature. What if your readers choose to stop consuming information through a Reader? You may think to yourself, "Well, they'll catch it on Twitter, Facebook or one of my other social media outlets." Are you really going to count on your readers being online at the same time you post or soon after?
The advantage to RSS readers is it permitted us to scan all our feeds in one centralized location at our convenience. Social media streams are constantly changing and don't provide the same benefit although they have other perks. That said, more and more of us are consuming information through social networks these days, especially for breaking news. Distributing information through these outlets isn't a viable, permanent replacement for everyone.
How can you expand your pool, keep your audience engaged, and minimize the impact of your site traffic? The answer is by utilizing an RSS To Email tool.
Providing a subscribe by email option allows readers to receive an email when a new post is published. We all use email and we know how it works. From the bloggers standpoints, they receive more control and a direct opportunity to reach their audience. In addition, building an email list becomes a nice added benefit.
For a list of RSS to Email tools, check out this comprehensive blog post from CrazyEgg. We're currently contemplating trying out RevResponse's RSS To Email tool which is a free solution. At this time, it makes sense to direct your eyes to the sidebar where ours lives :-).
Are you concerned with Google Reader closing its door? Why or why not?