A couple of nights ago I logged into my Feedburner account and saw a message that I needed to move my account to Google. Feedburner, for those of you who don't use it, is the most popular feed measurement service in the world. It tracks subscriber numbers over time as well as base metrics.
If you're familiar with what Yahoo! did with Flickr, this is the same thing. They are forcing all users to transfer their Feedburner.com accounts to their Google account. If you don't have one, you have to create one or lose your stats. I had a bit of trepidation on doing this given Feedburner's notoriously flaky record of late, but I decided to take one for the team and document what happened.
Here is a video demo of what you can expect:
[Feed readers, click through to the post if you cannot see the video]
UPDATE: This graphic was not working in the video above, but here is what the new subscribers/reach chart looks like. (Interesting to note that this is done in Flash now and cannot be viewed on an iPhone or other mobile device.)
UPDATE 2 (1/24): After a six day drop in subscribers, my numbers bounced back to where they were before the switch. Engagement numbers (the blue line) seems to still be a bit off.
Keys to understand:
- Google has good reason to do this and hopefully will allow the service to remain free of bugs
- Email subscriptions get a huge boost now running on the Gmail mail servers
- Feed number will fluctuate "for up to a week" after this transition takes place (I am down from 2800 to 800). They say this will bounce back
- Subscribers should not see a change
- You don't have to change any code, it redirects for you (and will for the life of the product per Google)
- You must do this by February 28, 2009 or you risk losing your subscribers
- Google has removed all metrics beyond subscriber counts. If you want pageviews, visitors, inbound links, etc. you need to set up Google Analytics or another comparable package
- From what I've seen on the Google Feedburner forums, there is a complete lack of support so we're left to guess and worry
- We don't really have a choice, do we?
Any other questions, just let me know.
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