The Idea

Autoblogging is a way of setting up a website whose blog is taken care of automatically, constantly updated with fresh, curated and quality content of your choice. It can also be an opportunity to make use of affiliate marketing and earn some extra cash every month.

As a way of showcasing the power of WP RSS Aggregator we decided to do just that; we set up an autoblogging website from scratch. With our team being a remote team and our very own Alyona already running a travel blog over at Alyona Travels, we chose travel as the website’s topic, and put together a long list of travel bloggers from around the world.

Once this was ready we chose our domain name, purchased it along with a hosting plan, and started putting together the website. Follow the whole process on the video below or keep reading.

The Tools Used

All that’s needed to set up such a site is a clean WordPress install, a theme, a small selection of plugins and a few hours of work. The rest would take care of itself over time.

The Theme

Gather-DevPressFor this project we used the Gather premium theme from DevPress. We chose a premium theme since we had it handy and it fit the bill for the look we were going for, however you’re free to use any free WordPress blogging theme, and there are plenty of great ones.

The Plugins

Firstly, we needed the website to have backups available, to filter out spam content, and to update automatically whenever needed, so we made use of a few plugins. These are Advanced Automatic Updates, Akismet and BackupBuddy. The latter is the only premium plugin, however you can make use of a free alternative instead. We also set up Jetpack to keep track of the published posts, and Ninja Forms to handle the contact forms across the website.

Apart from those, all that’s needed is WP RSS Aggregator and it’s add-ons. Here we made use of the complete Advanced Feeds Bundle, however you can achieve something very similar with only the Feed to Post add-on.

wpra-banner

The Process

Before getting started with the importing of posts, we set up the basic requirements for the website. So we changed the general settings, customized the theme from its settings, and set up Jetpack to monitor the statistics as well as BackupBuddy to keep automatic backups.

Once that was done it was time to set up WP RSS Aggregator. First up we activated the license keys and started looking through the general settings available, setting an age limit of 6 months for all imported posts and settings the feed sources to be fetched every 12 hours by default.

travel-blogger-general-settings

Now, since the intention of this website isn’t to steal anyone’s content we only wanted to import and display the first 150 words from each post. This will give the reader a taste of what the post is about, then link them to the original post on the feed source’s website. This guarantees that the author of the post gets the credit that he or she deserves.

A way of doing this is to use the Word Trimming feature in the general Feed to Post settings of WP RSS Aggregator. By setting it to Trim the Content at 150 words it will limit the content imported to just that amount, along with any images included within that part of the post.

Another way to also give as much credit as possible to the original author of the post is to use the plugin’s feature whereby it creates a new user for the author listed within the RSS feed. This ensures that he or she is given credit for the post immediately.

travel-blogger-word-trimming

Next up we started creating our first feed source. Below you can view the settings we used for the Alyona Travels blog as an example. After entering the RSS feed’s URL and choosing a few simple settings, we then created a new post category within the WordPress site specifically for this blog. This way, all imported posts for Alyona Travels can be located within one category, and they can be displayed individually should the need arise.

Apart from that we also wanted a way to link back to the original post at the very end of the 150 word limit, and this is where the Append to Content feature came in. By using the available placeholders we set up a message saying “Keep reading this article on {{feed_name}}”, where “this article” linked directly to the original post while “{{feed_name}}” displayed the title we set for the feed source and also linked directly to the feed source’s URL.

taverl-blogger-append

After setting the same author and word trimming features we mentioned earlier, all that was needed was to publish the feed source and fetch the first few available posts. Our blog now start being populated with content that was in turn being linked to its original source for further reading.

With this feed source as an example of what was needed we simply needed to add the rest of the feed sources and populate our site.

travel-blogger-feed-source

The End Result

Once all the feed sources were set up, along with the website’s about page and contact forms, the Travel Blogger Community website was up and running. In just a short amount of time we had set up a brand new website that provided our readers with a single source from where to find all the latest news from their favourite travel blogs.

travel-blogger-community-website
Start your own autoblogging website today!

Published by Mark Zahra

The Team Lead and Head of Support for the WP RSS Aggregator project, which forms part of the RebelCode family.

10 Comments

  1. Link doesn’t work.

    Reply
    • Hi Henry, sorry about that. We’re currently waiting on the host to get back to us on an issue with this demo site and we’ll get it back up the moment it’s sorted 🙂 In the mean time you can also check out our other demo site, WP News Desk – http://wpnewsdesk.com/

      Reply
  2. Quick question: What if I wanted to add my own commentary instead of the 150 character excerpt (still including a link back to the original source)… Could I do that?

    Reply
    • Hi amhurst717, what you could do is to import the posts as Drafts then change the content of the post to whatever you’d like it to be before publishing.

      Are you looking to have a different commentary for each post, or the same for each post from a particular feed source?

      If you need any further information please feel free to open a premium support ticket:

      http://www.wprssaggregator.com/contact/

      Reply
  3. Hi…
    I bought the Advanced Feeds Bundle and I am having problem importing the graphic to have it like a featured image, maybe is due the source doesn’t have it. But I will like to know, how can I put a Default Featured Image if I don’t get the image from the source ?

    Reply
  4. Not sure I understand here, but if you’re taking blog material from other websites – similar to scraping – and posting them as your own via this tool, can’t you get sued?

    Reply
  5. Is it possible to aggregate social feeds like facebook posts , Pinterest etc.

    Reply

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