Using Google Reader

November 7, 2012 — 4 Comments

Earlier today I posted a list of feeds that are in my Google Reader.  Now I want to walk you through the steps of setting up Google Reader and subscribing to these feeds.

The first thing that you will need is a gmail account. If you don’t have one I highly recommend signing up for a free account. Google uses this account to link you to all of their services including Google Reader.

Once you have your Gmail account you can now set up your Google Reader Account. To add any of the blogs that I have listed in the earlier post, all you have to do is to click on the link that I provided. This link will take you right to the Google Reader subscriber page for that blog. But for an example, let’s set up ChristianDroid on your Google Reader, after all that needs to be at the top of the list anyway doesn’t it?

1.  Click the link for our blog.  ChristianDroid

This should open up an new page in your browser, if you are not already signed in to your Gmail Account the page will look like the following screenshot.

google reader 1


2.  Click on the blue button that says “Sign in to Subscribe.” This will take you to a page that allows you to sign in to your Google (Gmail) account.

Once you are signed in, you should be taken to the Google Reader page.

google reader 3


3.  Click on the Subscribe button in the gray box at the top. You are now subscribed to ChristianDroid’s RSS feed in your Google Reader.

4.  Now when you get a lot of feeds in your reader you might like to organize them.  On the left side of the page you will see “Subscriptions,” click the little drop down arrow beside the word Subscriptions and choose “Manage Subscriptions” at the bottom of the drop down menu. You will then be taken to this page.

google reader 4

5.  To create a folder, choose “Add to a folder” beside the feed you want in that folder. You can then choose to add this feed to an existing folder or choose to create a new folder to add this feed to. Once you have all of your folders added, you can also drag and drop the feeds in the left hand panel of the main Google Reader page to organize them and drop them in the folders that you choose.

Once you have added all of the feeds that you would like and organized them into the folders, your Google Reader page will probably look a lot like mine.

Google Reader 5

Each folder is organized in the left hand panel. You can click the expand arrow to the right of the folder name to see the individual feeds that comprise this folder.  From this panel you can drag and drop to arrange to your liking. (As long as you keep ChristianDroid at the top, the rest of the organization is up to you.)

6.  Now whenever you go to Google Reader you will be presented with all of your feeds. To view an individual article, just click on the title and the article will drop down and open so that you can read it.

Google Reader 6

To subscribe to other feeds, other than the ones that I have listed here, there are two easy ways to add to your Google Reader.

First, from your Google Reader page, click the big red “Subscribe” button. In the box that pops up enter the web address of the blog you would like to add to your Reader. Google will find the feed address and add it for you.

The second method is used when you visit a blog and want to add them from there. Look on the blog for the RSS icon, mine is in the top menu of the page, others put them at the bottom. When you click on the page you will be presented with several different options to subscribe.

google reader 7

Choose the icon that says “Google” and the blog’s RSS feed will be added to your Google Reader. Please note that the subscription option may be different on some blogs. This is what it looks like if the blog uses Google’s RSS feedburner to distribute their feeds. This is the most common method used among blogs today.

Other Applications

Once you have your Google Reader set up you are able to access it using a variety of methods and devices. There are many RSS reader programs out there that sync with Google Reader but here are a couple of my favorites.

  • Google Reader – most of the time when I am on a desktop, I simply type in into my web browser and use the web based reader from Google.
  • Reeder – this program is the absolute best RSS reader I have ever used.  It is available for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and MAC OS.  The program is not free but it is well worth the few dollars spent.
  • Google Reader for Android – this is Google’s Android program for syncing with Google Reader.  Works great and is free.
  • Reader HD – On my Android Tablet this is the best RSS program that I have found.  Works great and is very similar to Reeder.  There is a free version with ads at the bottom or a paid app that removes the ads.  Available in the Google Play Store.
That is how you set up and subscribe to RSS feeds using Google Reader. Keep in mind that there is a limit to the number of characters that Google allows in their feeds and some websites only feed a portion of the story, so you will still have to visit the blogs from time to time. Also it is important to keep visiting and commenting on the blogs to let the blog writer know someone is still out there reading.
For keeping up with the latest posts and news, nothing beats Google Reader for its ease of use and ability to sync across all of your devices.
Do you use Google Reader?


4 responses to Using Google Reader

  1. Yes I use Google Reader and I LOVE IT!!

Trackbacks and Pingbacks:

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    [...] my up to date on all of my blog friends and the latest in tech news. I have even written a post here about how to use Google Reader to manage your reading. Sometimes when we are faced with change we [...]

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