It is required to link your show to a homepage for important reasons:
- Having a homepage can make it easier for listeners to find your show. A homepage provides some extra context for Google when a user searches for content, and thus match more user searches.
- If you link your RSS feed and homepage, users searching for your podcast by name can get a description of your podcast as well as a carousel of episodes from your show in Google Search, something like this:
1. Create a homepage
Create a descriptive homepage for your show. Follow these guidelines in your homepage:
- Do not try to link multiple homepages to a single feed; Google supports only one homepage per show.
- Ensure that the title of the podcast appears in the text of the show's homepage.
- The page must comply with Google's Webmaster Guidelines.
- Follow Search best practices for your webpage, as well as general best practices for adding useful and relevant titles and descriptions.
- Google strongly recommends that the homepage, RSS feed, and all audio and video resources be at https addresses (rather than http).
- Be sure that the page is not blocked to Google and doesn't require any passwords.
- The page must be available to Google at the exact URL specified in the RSS feed's
<link>tag, as described below.
When you've created a homepage, you need to link it to your feed. Google requires bidirectional linking between the homepage and the feed: that is, the homepage should point to the feed, and the feed should point to the homepage. This requires a link tag in both your homepage and your feed, as described next.
If you are using a podcast hosting service, you might be able to link your homepage and your feed using your hosting service settings pages. Check your podcast settings to see if you can specify your site's homepage URL; if so, do so, and skip to step 3. If you're not sure if this is possible on your hosting service, search your hosting service documentation for phrases like "specify my homepage".
- To find your feed's URL, search the help pages of your podcast service. Search for phrases like "Where is my RSS feed?"
- When you find your feed's URL, visit it in your browser to confirm that you've got the right URL. It will be raw XML code, something like this.
- If your feed has no
<link>tag, or if the URL it contains points to the wrong address, search your hosting service for information about how to specify a homepage address for your podcast.
Step 1: Link your homepage to your feed
<link type="application/rss+xml" rel="alternate" title="Title_Value" href="RSS_URL"/>
- Short, descriptive title of the podcast. This should closely match the user-visible title.
- URL of the podcast's RSS feed. The feed must be accessible by Google (not behind a firewall or blocked in any other way). If the served feed changes later, you don't need to worry about updating this value later. Tips for hosting service users.
Note that a page can have only one
<link type="application/rss+xml" rel="alternate"> tag.
Here is an example of a minimal homepage that is linked to a feed at https://www.example.com/podcasts/dafnas-zebras/rss/podcast.rss.
<html> <head> <link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="Podcast" href="https://www.example.com/podcasts/dafnas-zebras/rss/podcast.rss"/> <title>Dafna's Zebra Podcast</title> </head> <body> <h1>Dafna's Zebra Podcast</h1> <p>Most people don't realize that zebras actually make fabulous house pets. They're clean, well behaved, and always well dressed. In this podcast series we talk to zebra lovers and zebra experts to get to the bottom of this amazing striped animal.</p> </body> </html>
Step 2: Link your feed to your homepage
In your RSS feed, add a
<link> tag at the channel level that includes the fully-qualified URL of your homepage. It should look something like this:
If you are using a podcast hosting service, see above to learn how to find your feed URL.
3. Add a Listen on Google Podcasts badge
You can optionally add a Listen on Google Podcasts badge to your homepage, to provide a one-click experience for your listeners to listen or subscribe to your podcast on Google Podcasts.