Feedburner Trick: Give Users a File AFTER They Subscribe

  • July 29th 2013
  • by Marvin Russell
Feedburner Trick: Give Users a File AFTER They Subscribe

This post will show you how to give your visitors a free download AFTER they subscribe to your blog using Feedburner. If you follow my instructions I can guarantee that you will drastically increase the number of people who subscribe to your blog, just like I did. It’s actually quite simple, but feel free to ask me questions in the comment section below.

Keep in mind, my example uses WordPress; however, you should be able to apply this trick using any blogging platform or custom codedblog.

Before you get started, I do have one request. Please tweet this post so other people like you can enjoy this Feedburner trick.

Step 1: Create a “Confirm and Download” page

This step requires that you do (7) very simple things. I’ve listed them below and I have provided an image to guide you. Keep in mind that you can name this web page what ever you want. However, I suggest you read the entire post before you rename the page so you can fully understand the method of my madness.

  1. Add a short message in the body that reads something like this: “Click the link below to subscribe to our blog and download your free file”
  2. Then add a “Download Now” link below your message and edit the link as follows:
  3. Set the id attribute as id=”sub_link”
  4. Add a onclick=”frmsubmit()” function will push the free file to the browser for the new subscriber to download
  5. Make the href “javascript:;” since we will be assigning the Feedburner confirmation url dynamically
  6. Set the anchor tag to open in a new window (target=”_blank”)
  7. Copy the URL (you’ll it for step 2)

How To let users download a file using feedburner

Step 2: Make edits in feedburner.com

  1. Go to Publicize > Email Subscriptions > Communication Preferences
  2. Change the default confirmation link from ${confirmation} to: http://YourBlog.com/confirm-and-download/?url=${confirmation}
  3. To avoid confusion I also edited the email content to something like this


make sure you replace http://YourBlog.com/confirm-and-download/ with your url from step 1.


Step 3: Upload a your file

  1. Upload your free file, download, ebook, whatever :)
  2. Copy the URL of your file and save for step 5

Step 4: Add a snippet of code to header.php

  1. Open your header.php file (if you are using WordPress)
  2. Add or replace the below body tag below the closing ofhead tag. Don’t forget to edit your post ID. The post ID should be from the page you created in step 1.

<body <?php body_class(); ?> <?php if($post->ID == ‘554‘){ ?>onLoad=”urlAssign()”<?php } ?>>

5. Add a snippet of code to footer.php

Add the below snippet of code to footer.php. Make sure you change the post ID and the window.location URL to the url of your file.

—–start code——-

<?php if($post->ID == ‘554‘){ ?>
<script type=”text/javascript”>
function frmSubmit(){

function urlAssign(){
<input type=”hidden” name=”fb_url” id=”fb_url” value=”<?php echo $_REQUEST[‘url’]; ?>” />
<?php } ?>

—–end code——-

That is it folks. Be sure to test and be sure to use your domain, post id and other content in the above example. Please let us know if you experience problems or flaws with this Feedburner trick. So far it has worked great for our blog. To see ours in action, look in the right column of any post on this blog and you will see our free download area.

Special thanks!

dilipI want to thank Dilp Srivastava for making this vision a reality. He coded this script, trouble shot it, and adjusted it until it worked perfectly. Thanks Dilip! You are one of the best developers I have ever worked with.


  • Great Post is what I was looking at for a log time not

    • Glad you like it :) – Let me know if you have any questions.

  • Smart tip Marvin! Creating a freebie and offering it after a subscriber signs up adds a nice personal touch to your blog. These little acts make ALL the difference in the blog-0-sphere.

    Thanks for sharing!


    • HI Ryan,

      Feedburner is so popular but they don’t offer this in their settings. I hope you enjoy :)

  • I have followed your steps and I am so close to getting this to work. I have my page set up and when I tested it out I was able to confirm my email subscription but the download wouldn’t work. Does it need to be a zipped file in order to work and not a PDF? I am using the media file URL for the PDF I uploaded to my WP self-hosted site. Do you have any other thoughts as to why everything would be working but the download?


      A PDF should be fine as long as it is one pdf and not multiple.

      The download should happen (it may be happening, check your downloads folder) once the user is taken to the page and clicks the link.

      Does Feedburner show the thank you?

      What is you blog address?

      • It is just one PDF but I am linking to the media file that I uploaded to Wp and not an actual page do you think this matters?

        The Feedburner link does give the confirmation/thank you, but the download doesn’t automatically happen like it did when I subscribed to your blog.

        The site I am working on is for a client and it is scotlongyear (dot) com

        Thank you.

        • SEO GROUP

          I tested it out twice. It looks like the everything works but the download. Triple check step 5. Is the id correct and the entire url of the file location?

          One issue I did see is that once I hit Download the confirmation says jroberts(email) and not the email I submitted.

          • That is very strange. I just tried to use another email address to subscribe and now it is giving me an error message when I try to click the download message. I will check step 5 but I may have to revert everything back to the old way if I can’t get it to work. :(

          • I deleted your email addresses from the unverified list. Would you mind trying it again and telling me what happens for you. Uploading the file as a zipped file seems to have made this work. Please let me know. Thank you.

          • I may have spoken too soon. Even though I think it worked Feedburner says that my susbscription is still unverified even though I clicked the link.

          • SEO GROUP

            I got the file. See if I was added to the list.

            What do you think the issue was?

          • It shows you on the list but it says you are unverified as well as a few other people who have tried to subscribe. I really need the subscribers to be verified and I am not sure what is wrong. That feedburner page isn’t pulling up when the download happens like it did when I subscribed to your site. Thoughts?

          • SEO GROUP

            Let me ask my developer today. This way I can make sure our directions are flawless.

            Email me your contact info and we will take a look. No charge.

          • Thank you. I appreciate your help.

          • Did you ever get this sorted out?

          • No. We ended up just giving up on the whole idea. Thanks for trying to help, though.

  • In step 2 you have written ${confirmation} but in your graphic it shows ${confirmlink}. I used ${confirmlink}. Which is correct?

  • melissa

    Hi there! I am soooo close, but it is not working. Can you help? First you said to create a page, but if I create a page or post in wp anyone can access it and the link. ? Plus the page shows in my menu. Step 3; upload your file with your URL. I have one saved in google docs, is this what you mean, or do you have a better site to store docs. The link is not working though. I get the message from feed burner and the link is only partially highlighted, so I have to copy and past then the page pulls up (which is open to everyone) and click on the link and their is no doc. Also within that download page, there are no instructions to place the link of the doc. Help?

    • Hi Melissa,

      I think it needs to be a zip file, not a google doc.
      The page being in your menu is a WP hack you have to implement.

  • instead of the following

    function urlAssign(){

    <input type=”hidden” name=”fb_url” id=”fb_url” value=”” />

    wouldnt it be better to just call the following php function


    on server side. It will trigger the confirmation link and the subscription would become active.

    • Jason Smith

      did it worked in your case…??

  • The method is really good.. I have implemented this to my website http://itbloggertips.com/ and it’s working but i want to change it randomly.

    By your way i can fix only one file download.

    What to do if i have multiple files to download with multiple posts?

    I have three different posts where i have given subscription box and when reader subscribe then that file should be downloaded accordingly after email subscription confirmation.


      Zip file :)

  • diegojoker

    Hi! could I use this to build a “thanks” page (without files) with the aim of analyzing conversions?

  • Veronica Adam

    Link Building Search Engine Optimization
    The goal of Link Building Search Engine Optimization and Link Building Agencies India is to obtain and maintain a number of high-value and Best Seo Link Building and offer Links Building Services.

  • MJ

    This is nice but would be cool if I knew how to use this with blogger.

  • Maria G.

    Hi, I’m not really getting this to work. The link in the e-mail directs to the downloadable pdf, but the subscription is not confirmed. I really want this to work – can you help me? My blog is http://www.creativevegancooking.blogspot.com
    Thank you, Maria G.

    • KimberlyAmici

      I am having the same trouble. I have a little experience with code but not sure how to do steps 4 & 5. I would love to be walked through those two steps.

  • pazhi yarasu

    Hi,I have created a post on “Subscribe to download feature in blogger using madmimi” .Kindly check at http://www.techinfoweb.com/2014/12/subscribe-to-download-feature-in-blogger-using-madmimi.html .I hope definitely it will be useful.

  • How critical is step 1? I’m using the Genesis theme and using their “Genesis – eNews Extended” plugin in my sidebar to collect Feedburner email subscriptions. I followed steps 2 through 5 in full, except for linking to my download page (instead of a zip file) and this is not working. I get the email confirmation with Feedburner tracking URL at the end, but it’s not verifying the subscription in Feedburner. That’s my only problem…it’s not verifying the subscription in Feedburner.

  • Deepak Goyal

    I have multiple item to download than how to change the url as you mention in the account

    http://YourBlog.com/free-download.zip how to change the file name for dynamic files

  • Katrina Villegas

    I am using blogger. Steps 4 and 5 are confusing me. Can anyone tell me how to do them in blogger? I don’t know where to paste the code, or where to find the post id. In step 1 I made a page not a post, so I thought I should be linking to that somehow, but I am unsure of how to do this. I would also like to understand the purpose of steps 4 and 5. I really like to understand why I am doing something instead of just copying and pasting LOL Thanks in advance for any help!

  • jinka varalakshmi

    The link created in first step is not like. I have set all the attributes, but after publishing attributes are changing like this Confirm & Download

    • jinka varalakshmi

      onclick=”frmsubmit()” and href=”javascript:;” attributes are disappearing.

  • SK Kashyap

    Hey sir, post is nice, but i am not able to this on my blog http://www.tips2secure.com , because you have mentioned this guide for wordpress bloggers but am using blogger as my blogging host. so pls check my blog and let me provide some codes in html for bloggers who are using blogger as their blog host if possible. i shall be very thankful to you for this.

  • karamath

    Hai sir,

    Article was just aweseme recently I migrated from blogger to wordpress thank god I found this article at the same time

    Thanks for sharing.


  • sandra.vanscoy

    I usually make in the span of 6 thousand-8 thousand bucks monthly working from home on the internet. Everyone ready to do simple computer-based task for 2h-5h daily from your home and gain good benefit while doing it… Test this task http://korta.nu/NDe

  • Excel VBA Tutorial


    I tried in my blog, but it seems it is not working every time. Sometimes e-Book gets downloaded but verification does not occur which is very important. Does any one else also facing this issue?