Tomorrow marks the end of Google Reader.
What does this mean?
It simply means that if you had a blog, and were used to reading the recent posts list from those blogs you follow, then you will not see those in blogger anymore. Don't panic!! There are plenty of solutions out there for you to get your crafting fix. Hopefully you have already taken precautions for the apocalypse and migrated to another tool but all is not lost....completely, that is?? You may have to go back to your favorite sites and "re-follow" and it may be a bit time-consuming for some with a lengthy list. Think of it as flushing out your system and everyone needs a good flushing every now and then, right?!? I suspect you will be seeing several campaigns to get new followers in the coming days - that's all part of the game!
What the scoop?
Well, I have been pulling my hair out for the past few days and everyone is asking me which direction to go in! I think this is ultimately a matter of preference and not really sure there is ONE answer that is correct. So, I have signed up for several different things this weekend and tested them the best I can and here is my review (these are all I've tested for now):
Feedly: Probably looks closest like Google Reader and has the ability to categorize or group your sites for easier reading. It also has several style preferences to view them in: Titales Only, Magazine View, Cards View & Full Article. This reader is a popular choice (I'm told) but I don't see what's so great about it....yet?!
Bloglovin': This is my favorite so far because I think it has a Pinterest feel with the ability to see and notice popular posts in a particular category that you may not have noticed otherwise. If you love Pinterest, you will LOVE this reader!!! I can't say enough good things about Bloglovin' -- It's AWESOME!! It even allows readers to comment directly from the feeds while still giving page hits to your blog! You can read more about that HERE. AND, You can even link it to your Facebook page and set it up to make automatic posts when it sees a new post on your blog so you don't have to go over and link it manually in Facebook.
The jury is still out on what I'm going to do about Feedburner (or email subscription feeds) but currently I am asking subscribers to sign up using Mailchimp. This only applies to those that wish to receive emails when I post something to my blog. I use this feature for some of the challenge blogs I follow (like JustRite) so that I am first to know what's going on over there! I am looking into a few others but mostly for other sites I manage. I don't think it's THAT big of deal for the average blogger but I wanted to give an option.
I have been a busy girl!
You may have noticed (or maybe not) that I switched to a 3-column design so I can use the left side-bar for all those follow buttons I needed to add! I also added a new My Sheri Cards Facebook Page to my profile so you can follow blog activity there as well. I linked up my blog feed so you can check out my posts anytime. I thought it was best to start a new page and keep my crafting separate from my personal life so you are free to follow me in either place or BOTH but the link on my side-bar is only for the crafting page!