Combine RSS Feeds with Yahoo Pipes

One of the easiest ways for a non-programmer to combine, aggregate and filter multiple RSS feeds into one is to use Yahoo! Pipes (YP). YP uses a sleek visual editor that allows the user to fetch and manipulate data sources, add user defined inputs and filter the content in a number of ways.

I used YP to combine nine* popular SEO feeds into one and then published it on pipes.yahoo.com where anybody can now use it. Try it in your favorite reader - Composite SEO News Feed.

By using the WordPress plugins FeedList and RunPHP I can also easily display the Composite SEO News Feed right here:

Composite SEO News Feed

  1. SearchCap: Old Google Street Views, Bing For Schools & DailyMotion’s Upset
  2. Facebook CTRs, comments and shares are all up; so why are marketers so unhappy?
  3. “Bing For Schools” Becomes “Bing In The Classroom” & Makes Program Available To All Schools
  4. Type new task: Configure updated profile page on Twitter
  5. New Google Maps “Digital Timeline” Shows Street View Images Dating Back 7 Years
  6. DailyMotion Says Google Is Cheating, Serves Up Its Own Video Content Over DailyMotion Videos
  7. Enterprise SEO Audits – Go Beyond The Desktop Crawl
  8. Majestic SEO Now Categorizing The Web For Marketers
  9. Bing: Again, Why We Are Better Than Google At Image Search

Remember this is the actual feed not just a graphic so whenever you are viewing this page the feed will be up to date.

When you first look at the drag and drop interface of YP it may seem a little daunting but here is a step by step using the above practical example and you can of course combine any feeds you choose.

First you need to sign in to YP with your Yahoo ID (create an ID if you don’t have one). When you’re signed in click Create a pipe and click the untitled tab to give your pipe a name. Drag a Fetch Feed into the workspace.

Drag the Fetch Feed module to the workspace.

Enter a feed url which you will find on most sites by clicking the RSS, XML or Atom link, or icon. If you see a “?” icon in the Fetch Feed module that means you have input a non-valid feed address.

Copy and paste the feed url.

Click the url icon to enter a second feed.

Click the url icon to enter a second feed.

Enter the second feed url.

Enter the second feed url.

Repeat until you have entered all the feed urls that you want to combine.

Complete the addition of feed urls.

Drag a Sort module to the workspace. Pipe the Fetch Feed module to the Sort module by clicking the circle on top of the Sort module and dragging it to the circle at the bottom of fetch module. A blue pipe will appear and connect the two.

Pipe the Fetch Feed module to the Sort module.

Sort by date in descending order by selecting PubDate from the first drop-down menu and Descending from the second drop-down menu.

Sort by date in descending order.

Drag a Truncate module to the workspace. Pipe the Sort module to the Truncate module by clicking the circle at the bottom of the Sort module and dragging it to the circle at the top of Truncate module. Enter a value for the maximum number of items you require from your combined feed.

Pipe the Sort module to the Truncate module.

Pipe the Truncate module to the Pipe Output and the Debug area will fill up with your new feed’s output.

Pipe the Truncate module to the Pipe Output.

Finally click Save and then click Publish. In the pop-up window enter a description for your pipe and when you click Publish again your Pipe will go public.

By combing YP with mashup tools like Dapper or OpenKapow you will be able to construct an RSS feed from almost anything that you can find on the Web.

*The nine feeds combined in the Composite SEO News Feed:
SEO by the SEA
Search Engine Land
Search Engine Roundtable
Matt Cutts
SEO Book
SEO Blog
SEOMoz
Threadwatch
Marketing Pilgrim

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