RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a computer language that uses XML format. This type of language is understood by both humans and computers.
Websites have RSS feeds – and if you own a website (no matter which website builder you used to create the site), you should know that your site benefits from this. Of course, it’s also important to get it fixed once you start to get RSS feed error messages.
Benefits of Using an RSS Feed
RSS feeds are indeed beneficial to website owners, but let’s take a look at how this feature also proves to be beneficial to users (your site visitors). Consider this – if a user has a favorite website, he or she can subscribe to the site’s RSS feed and receive the latest posts. Therefore, Using the RSS feed will allow users to skip the time-consuming effort of checking updates from their most-visited sites.
How an RSS Feed Works
RSS feeds work by using browsers to distribute their website’s content. The browsers will monitor the site’s content non-stop and pick up new articles once they’re posted. At the users’ end, they will simply get headlines and summaries of posts from the websites that they subscribed to.
Possible Causes of RSS Feed Errors
Before tackling the solution to RSS feed errors, let’s take a look at some of the possible causes of receiving this error message.
- Changing a plugin – Sometimes, a plugin will not work with your other plugins. That is, to say, they’re not compatible. If this happens, there’s a chance that the RSS feed of your website will be affected (and give the RSS feed error message).
- Changing a theme – Keep in mind that WordPress themes are actually filled with codes and shortcodes to function. A website that is running smoothly can suddenly encounter errors when a new theme is used.
- Poor formatting – An encoder can make small mistakes that will have a big effect on a website’s functionality. Even a blank space that’s not needed in the code can mess things up terribly.
How to Manually Fix RSS Feed Errors
First of all, recall if you have added a code snippet into your current theme’s functions.php file. If you did, check it for any errors. If there is a blank (extra) space after the closing php tag, remove it.
Note that this is often the cause of RSS feed error. Also, keep in mind that the closing php tag is actually optional when it comes to php blocks. The reason for this is that errors consisting of blank spaces especially when parenthesis () codes are used are very common. That’s why we also recommend not using the closing php tags when creating php blocks. It’s just easier that way and you’re less prone to committing errors.
How to Use a Plugin to Fix RSS Errors in WordPress
In the Plugins section of your Admin area, search for RSS Feed Fixer. You will get a lot of results and we suggest using the one with a lot of positive feedback. One such plugin is called Fix My Feed RSS Repair – it’s free and has a lot of good reviews.
After installing and activating the plugin, go to the Tools section of your WordPress Dashboard and click on the RSS Feed fixer. Click on the Fix RSS Error button to let the plugin do its work.
RSS Feeds on Your WordPress Website
Since RSS feeds are very important (to the site owner and the user), we recommend fixing the error as soon as possible. If you think that the problem might have been caused by poor formatting or errors in inputting code snippets, then manually fix it (as we showed you a while ago). However, if you are not sure how to go about it, you can just install a plugin that can fix the problem with a click of a button.