Make Google Reader Work For You

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Google Friend Connect is going away. Consider subscribing to my RSS feed in a Reader so we can stay in touch.


I think I am subscribed to a 100+ blogs, and the number grows daily and will continue to grow as Google Friend Connect is going away for non-Blogger blogs.

When I miss a day of checking my Reader, it blows up and becomes scary.

Two hours after I last checked!

To make my Reader less intimdating, I messed around and read Google Reader Help.

I thought I’d share some of what I learned.

1. Set up folders for your subscriptions.

Setting up folders allows you to categorize and prioritize your subscriptions.

There is a small black down arrow next to each subscription. When you left mouse click on it, a list of options will come up.

At the bottom is the option to make a new folder. Once you create your folder, the feed will be placed automatically in it.

I have folders labelled First and Second. I read these two folders before the others.

2. Hide any feeds that don’t have something new to be read.

Similar to above, there is a small black arrow next to the main Subscriptions label. Left mouse click it to reveal options for ALL your subscriptions.

Selecting “Show updated” will only show those feeds that have something new to be read.

Additionally, as you read through your subscriptions, and an item is read, it will disappear from the sidebar.

3. Edit Subscriptions

If you need to change any blog names (not folder names), unsubscribe from a feed, or move items around to different folders, you can simply go into settings (circled in red below) and select the subscriptions tab.

To change folder names, or delete a folder name, select the Folders and Tags tab.

4. Set up Preferences

Under settings, select the Preferences Tab.

1. Select your language – I chose English, although one day I hope to be able to choose/speak another language…

2. The start page allows you to choose what you see first when you open up your Reader. I like to see what is in my “First” Folder, so I have it set to First.

3. I check off the scroll tracking, so items are marked as read as I read and scroll past them.

4. I prefer to see the navigation pane because sometimes I want to read a different folder first.

5. The Misc is personal preference. I don’t want to confirm something read once I’ve read it, it slows me down. I do like to see the Favicons because I can easily identify blogs with them.

5. Use Google Tips and Shortcuts.

On the front page of your reader, Google offers some Tips and Tricks. I read these little blurbs and learn something new.


I now use this button.

And I love using the Keyboard Shortcuts, especially j/k for item down/up, and space/shift-space for page down/up.

These are basics tips, and I hope they help.

google reader
Google Reader by Trevor Manternach via Flickr

Does anyone have a tip to add, or share?

Recent Posts by CarolynY

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