9 Reasons Why RSS Feeds are Bad for Your Radio Station Website

Are you relying on RSS feeds to populate your radio station website? There’s a good chance they are doing more harm than good.  It’s common for stations to want to put as much content on their websites as possible.  More content equals more visitors, right?  Not necessarily.  While RSS feeds might seem convenient to keep your website updated, they can do more harm than good.

Why RSS Feeds Are Not the Best Strategy

Let’s dive into why relying on RSS feeds isn’t the best strategy for your radio station’s online presence.

1. RSS Feeds Dilute Your Brand Identity

When you import RSS content from other sources, you showcase someone else’s work on your site. This can dilute your brand identity, making it harder for your audience to recognize what makes your station or group unique. Your website should reflect your station’s voice, style, and personality, not a mishmash of external content. You’ll be surprised how focusing more on your local area will improve your online presence.

2. They Can Affect Your SEO

Search engines prioritize websites with original content. By importing RSS feeds, you’re filling your website with duplicate content, which can hurt your SEO rankings. Search engines may penalize your site for not offering unique content, making it harder for listeners to find you online.

3. Lack of Control Over Content

With RSS feeds, you have no control over the content that appears on your site. You might end up with irrelevant or inappropriate material that doesn’t align with your station’s or audience’s values or interests. For example, it may contain a news story about an artist your station would never play. This lack of control can damage your reputation and alienate your audience.

4. Reduced Engagement

Original, engaging content keeps visitors on your site longer and encourages them to return. RSS feeds, on the other hand, often lead to shorter visit times and higher bounce rates. Listeners come to your site for your unique perspective and content, not generic articles they can find elsewhere.

5. Potential Technical Issues

RSS feeds can sometimes break or fail to update correctly, leading to outdated or missing content on your site. This can frustrate your visitors and make your website look neglected and unprofessional.

6. Missed Opportunities for Local Content

As a radio station, you have a unique advantage in providing hyper-local content that resonates with your community. By relying on RSS feeds, you miss out on the opportunity to highlight local events, news, and stories your listeners care about. A hyper-local focus has been shown to be a significant draw for radio audiences in several markets.  While your competition tries to be everything to everyone, focus more on your local listeners to set your site apart.

7. Advertising and Revenue Impact

Displaying external content can impact your ability to sell advertising space effectively. Advertisers want their ads alongside your unique, engaging content, not generic feeds from other sources. This is especially true if you only display RSS links offsite – taking visitors away from your site.  You can attract more advertisers and generate more revenue by prioritizing original content.

8. Slower Page Loading Times

Relying on external RSS feeds can negatively impact your website’s loading speed. If the RSS feed’s hosting isn’t adequate, it can slow down the page attempting to load it. Slow loading times can frustrate visitors, increase bounce rates, and negatively affect your search engine rankings. Ensuring your site loads quickly is crucial for maintaining a positive user experience and retaining visitors.

9. Legal Ramifications

RSS feeds can expose your station to legal issues, particularly regarding copyright. Images within the RSS feed you are importing might not be licensed for your domain, potentially leading to copyright infringement claims. Additionally, importing content without explicit permission from the original creator can result in legal action for copyright violation. It’s essential to ensure that all content on your site is properly licensed and used within legal bounds.

What to Do Instead

Rather than relying on RSS feeds, radio stations should focus on creating original, engaging content tailored to their audience and community. This includes producing local news stories, event updates, interviews with artists, behind-the-scenes content, and interactive features like polls and contests. One of the most popular content segments among smaller markets is obituaries and mugshots.  By providing unique and relevant content, stations can build a loyal online community, improve SEO, and offer a more valuable experience to both listeners and advertisers.


While RSS feeds might seem like a shortcut to keeping your website updated, they have significant downsides. For a thriving radio station website, focus on creating and curating local content that reflects your station’s unique voice and engages your audience. Your listeners will appreciate the effort, and your website will become a go-to destination for fresh, relevant content.

We want to help your radio station grow and succeed online.  That journey starts with an amazing website that keeps visitors coming back often.  Reach out to us to start your path to online success, or schedule an appointment to see our tools in action.

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