2 Tricks to Keep Your Online Reading Manageable

As you can imagine, I do a LOT of online reading, across hundreds of sites and blogs. To manage it all, I do 2 things:

  1. I use Google Reader, which is an RSS reader. See here to learn how and why to use it, for free.
  2. I use the PostRank extension for Google Reader. PostRank helps me see which posts are most popular (and perhaps important) for me to read/review.

Here’s what my Google Reader looks like WITHOUT PostRank.

And here’s what it looks like WITH PostRank.

Additional tips

  • Many professionals use RSS readers (and/or Twitter) to keep on top of important online posts & articles. This makes your article/post headlines incredibly important!
  • You can use Google Reader as a social networking & conversation tool by following what other people share/comment on in the Reader. (See Guy Gonzalez up there in “People I Follow”!)
  • You can add Twitter feeds to Google Reader, too. (Just paste in the Twitter user URL into the subscription feed box, e.g., http://twitter.com/janefriedman.)
  • Keep up with my Shared Items even if you don’t use Google Reader.

Do you have any tips to share to streamline online reading? Leave them in the comments!

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10 thoughts on “2 Tricks to Keep Your Online Reading Manageable

  1. Cindy O. Herman

    You know, my social media marketing teacher kept telling us to use Google Reader and I keep putting it off — one more thing to learn! I’ll have to buckle down and do it. And PostRanck, too. Thanks, Jane.

  2. Jane Friedman

    @Megan – I usually spend 3-5 hours on a Sunday doing all my reading! I think it helps to do it in a few focused sessions every week or month. I don’t know that there’s a trick aside from using PostRank to filter out less important posts.

  3. Megan Haskell

    I also use Google Reader, but still never quite manage to keep up with everything. How much time a day do you spend reading blogs/twitter/etc.? Is there a trick to speeding through articles in Reader besides just scrolling?

  4. Angel Villagomez

    I usually use my iPad to read through my Google Reader feeds, but I’m going to definitely use that extension on myy computer! I agree with pretty much everyone about Google Reader. It’s definitely my favorite service from Gooogle.

    This isn’t very efficient, but what I’m trying to do is not worry about reading through the feeds immediately, but queuing the more interesting articles to read later on Instapaper. That way, I won’t rush through more interesting articles and I won’t waste too much time on ones that are better skipped. The only problem is that my queue is pretty long at the moment, so I have much catching up to do!

  5. Todd Michael Greene

    I’ve been using Google Reader for some time also. It’s greatly improved my ability to keep up with the blogs important to me. I didn’t know about PageRank either. But I’m checking out after I finish posting this. 🙂

  6. Carol J. Alexander

    I agree, Jane. Google Reader is a must. I call it my newspaper. I scan the headlines and read what looks interesting. Because of my habit of doing this, I’m always careful about titling my own posts. I want that title to catch people’s eyes. Didn’t know about PostRank. I’m also going to check that out. Thanks for the tips.

  7. Darcy Drake

    Great post! I use Google Reader, but not PostRank, so I’m going to check it out ASAP. Getting into the habit of using Google Reader was one of the best decisions I made regarding social media. Second only to downloading TweetDeck.


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