The RSS Feed Generator is the ideal tool for including dynamic and constantly updating iTunes and App Store content on your site or app. There are a wide range of feeds available including those for most popular, new and recently added, as well as featured content across all the media types available on iTunes and the App Store and for each of the storefronts.
The RSS Feed Generator exists in two flavors — a public, non-affiliated version as well as an affiliate specific version. The public version can be found at http://rss.itunes.apple.com while the affiliate version needs to be accessed from inside your affiliate network’s dashboard so that the proper affiliate tracking code is attached.
RSS Feed results will vary depending on the media type but typically include art (album art, app icon, etc.), title, developer or artist, and genre. Some feeds include descriptions of the product, previews, release date and more.
The tool consists of a series of drop down menus to create a URL. Starting on the left, first choose the storefront you wish to create the feed for. The second option defines what media type the feed will be for and includes options for music, podcasts, audiobooks, TV shows, music videos, movies, apps and Mac apps. The third option allows you choose your feed type. This list will auto-populate based off of your recent media type choice. The fourth drop down allows you to define how many results you want with a maximum of 300. Finally, the Genre drop down, also dependent on your choice, allows you to further filter the results shown. Explicit content is controlled with the final two radio buttons near the right.
After specifying the feed you wish to create click on the Generate button to the far right. Your RSS Feed URL will be presented with an option to preview.
This URL can then be integrated into your app or website. The RSS Feed Generator does not provide a way for the actual content to be displayed in your app or on your site. You will either need to specify a parser to display the content or use a third party solution.
The RSS Feed Generator URL can also be manually tweaked. A few of those tricks are listed below.
Customizing the Genre
While there is a drop down to specify the Genre of the feed these are only top level genres. For example if you were to create a feed for the top 10 Blues albums in the US your feed would look similar to this*: http://itunes.apple.com/us/rss/topalbums/limit=10/genre=2/xml
However, if you were an affiliate partner and had a Blues based website you would probably need something a little more specific. By referencing the Genre IDs Appendix in the Affiliate Resource Site you would notice that there are actually seven Blues specific genres. To tweak the earlier feed to be “Chicago Blues” specific replace the “genre=2” with “genre=1007”.
XML vs. JSON
Customizing the Number of Results
While the maximum is 300 you can choose any smaller number of results to be returned with your RSS Feed. The Size drop down menu only allows five options but by replacing the value in the “limit” parameter you can change this to anything between 1 and 300.
There are two different URL formats created by the RSS Feed Generator and these two different URL formats have slight differences in the formatting of actual results.
The “New Apps,” “New Free Applications, and “New Paid Applications” feeds, for the “Apps” media type are not customizable for genre or number of results.