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Configuring RSS Feeds

When you enable the RSS Feed feature on your Site Settings page, an RSS Feed icon will appear at the bottom of all sermon views and the sermon cover page. Clicking the icon takes the user to a page where they can subscribe to a feed of the most recent sermons you have added to your archive. A variety of one-click subscription methods are provided for RSS readers such as browsers and multimedia players.

What is included in your Sermons Online feed

By default, the feed includes all the sermons preached over the past five dates. If multiple sermons are preached on the same date, all are included in the feed for that date. Example: your church publishes two services per week. Your feed will contain 10 sermons (2 services each over the past 5 weeks.) The number of past dates to include in the feed can be customized; see below. For each sermon, the feed will include the title, name of the speaker, date and time, and a link to the sermon's audio or video file. If the optional description, series, and scripture references are published, those will be included in the feed as well.

The feed subscription (the overall collection of your sermons) will include the name of your church, the contact information of your technical point-of-contact, and a link to your church's sermon page. This information is taken from your site settings page. A default "open book" logo graphic is used on the feed, but this can be customized; see below.

Customizing Your Feed

The following feed parameters can be customized via the Site Settings page:

Church Name

This is the name that also appears as the title of the Sermon Site Manager.

Church Sermon Page URL

Each sermon in the feed links to the Sermon Cover Page on your web site. The Church Sermon Page URL in your Site Settings page is used as the link target. If this URL is not defined, then the subscriber will be shown a generic page of your sermons with the Sermons Online logo.

Technical Point-of-Contact

The Technical point-of-contact email is used as the "managingEditor" and "webMaster" attributes of the feed.

Multimedia Format

We recommend you select MP3 Audio for maximum compatibility. If there are multiple files with the same format for a sermon, the one with the highest bandwidth is used.

Number of past sermon dates

This is the number of publication-dates in the past to include in each feed. If you publish once a week and you set this number to 5 (the default), then all the sermons you published in the last 5 weeks will be included (that is, the past month.) What is counted are unique publication dates, not sermons. For example, if you publish the sermons for 3 services per week, then the default feed will include 15 total sermons (3 sermons for each of the past 5 weeks.)

Image to display with the feed

By default, the image displayed with RSS feeds is the Sermons Online "open book" icon:

You can substitute an image of your own choosing for this one by filling in the following fields:

  • Image URL: cut/paste the url address of the image you wish to use. It must be a .jpg, .gif, or .png image. For maximum quality, make sure the image is at least 1400 pixels and square.
  • Height: the height of the image to display in the feed listing, in pixels; the default is 144px. Note, iTunes ignores the height and width settings. The image must be 1400 pixels square, and iTunes will scale it as needed to fit.
  • Width: If your graphic is square, then you only need to specify just the height. If the image is not square, then specify its display width here.

If you need help with any of these steps, just sign in to the Site Manager and open a Support Ticket