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The WordPress.com Reader: Three Quick Tips

New to WordPress.com and ready to read, explore, and engage with others? Here’s a primer on how to get the most out of your Reader.

Image by Sebastien Wiertz (CC BY 2.0)

Brand-new to WordPress.com? To explore your Reader, log on to WordPress.com and click on the Reader tab in the top left of the page, next to My Site.

Blogging isn’t just about publishing your own posts, but about reading and commenting on other people’s posts, too. You can manage this activity right in your Reader. If you’re new to WordPress.com, or would like a quick refresher, here are three tips on getting the most out of the Reader.

Followed Sites

I love following new blogs I’ve discovered. For your favorite bloggers, you might want to receive email notifications each time they post something new; for other sites, you may want to see new posts on a more casual basis, such as each time you visit the Reader.

Followed Sites

You can adjust the settings for each site you follow in Reader → Followed Sites. Find the site in this list (click on By Date to see your most recently followed sites first, or use the drop-down to filter By Name to view sites in alphabetical order). Then, click the arrow on the left to view its subscription settings:

Subscription settings

You can receive an email every time a new post is published on a specific blog. Or, you can opt in to daily or weekly digests: a compilation of new posts from various sites you’ve specified.

Your interest in a blog might change over time; visit this list at any time to make subscription changes.

Tags

In your Reader sidebar, you’ll also see a section labeled Tags. Here, you can keep track of specific tags and read the latest posts on topics you’re passionate about. If you’re an active Daily Post photo challenge participant, you might follow the photo challenge tag, or if you’re a serious reader of creative nonfiction, you can keep your eye on new material from writers in the creative nonfiction tag.

Tags

To add a tag, type it in the Follow a Tag box, then click enter to add it to your list. (Note that only posts published with this specific tag will appear on the tag page, so if your tag is too long, narrow, or obscure, there might not be anything else listed.)

Follow a tag

Want to learn more? Here’s a quick resource on owning your Reader.

To view the latest posts in a particular tag, click on its label in the list to view the stream of posts. If you no longer want to follow a tag, click the “x” next to the label in the list:

Delete tag

My Likes

Also in your Reader sidebar, you’ll see a section called My Likes. Click on this tab to view a stream of all the posts you’ve liked.

My Likes

It’s nice to revisit posts I’ve read and enjoyed, which often inspire me to publish my own perspectives on a topic. I also find My Likes helpful when I’m compiling a roundup of favorite reads on my blog — it’s a record of everything I’d recommend to my readers.

How do you use these sections of the Reader?

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      1. Well, that information was quite useful. Thanks a lot.
        May you please tell me how can I add direct follow link (and not the ‘follow through email’ link) in my posts for wordpress bloggers.

        Liked by 2 people

  1. The new reader is an improvement, but it still doesn’t show all posts published. Did you know? For example: only via email I get all posts of the Daily Post. The reader shows, to my estimation, about a half only.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I don’t believe all Daily Post posts (eg, daily prompts) appear in the Reader.

      The new Reader is improving, yes, and the Reader team is currently working on more updates to continue to improve the experience. Thanks for hanging in there.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. I’m curious, why when someone follows a blog do some get automatically signed up for emails and some don’t and have to go in and edit it in the reader? I have a private blog, does that make a difference? Does it depend on whether I invite them or whether they request access?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. If someone follows your blog, they’ll receive an email notifying them that they’ve subscribed; after, they can click “Manage Subscriptions” so they can adjust their email settings in the Reader. Non-WP.com users will also be able to confirm their subscription in an email (but would need to create an account to access the Reader and follow blogs there).

      If you have a private blog, I don’t think subscribers receive any emails of your posts. (More here: https://en.support.wordpress.com/subscriptions-and-newsletters/)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi Morag — sorry for the delay.

        I’d found a few related forum posts around this that might be helpful:

        https://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/private-blogs-subscription?replies=2

        https://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/do-followers-still-get-email-updates-from-a-private-blog?replies=6

        I’m not sure what the answer is, as it might depend on when a person subscribed to your blog (before you made it private, or after) or if if you invited them as viewers.

        Since this is a support question and not related to this post, can you post in the forums?

        https://en.forums.wordpress.com/

        Thanks.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. So useful to read little hints and tips like this. Although I’ve only been blogging for a few months it’s easy to get into a rut and just do exactly the same things with every new blog article. I think I need to start thinking about reaching out to other bloggers a bit more (well a lot more).

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The Reader is a great tool. I use it all the time to keep up with my favorite blogs. I try to view mine everyday, but sometimes I get backed up and have to go back and binge read. The great thing is that even if I am not completely up-to-date, all the posts are right there in one place for me to scroll through at my own pace.

    Thanks for reminding me about tags. I just started following the Creative Nonfiction tag.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Reader works well for exploring new posts, or to see posts under a certain tag. If you want to pinpoint a specific post (and you know the blog it appears on), you can search for the site in your Followed Sites list, or visit the site directly if you know the URL.

      Although, just to clarify so I’m not misunderstanding your question: what exactly are you looking for? One of your posts? Someone else’s?

      Liked by 1 person