Editor’s note: “Ask an SEO” is a weekly column by technical SEO expert Jenny Halasz. Come up with your hardest SEO question and fill out our form. You might see your answer in the next #AskanSEO post!Welcome to another edition of Ask an SEO! Today, we’ve got a question from Emilee in Ohio. She asks:I was wondering, in the case of sitemaps. Say, I were to delete or combine a few pages, should I resubmit a sitemap to the relevant Webmaster Tools, or is it OK to just update the human-readable page onsite? I’m wondering if it’s sufficient enough for GoogleBot to crawl in terms of updating for SERPs as well when doing a site:example.com search for pages that are indexed to gain an understanding of what pages haven’t been crawled.XML sitemaps are a service that Google offers to SEO professionals. They aren’t required, and sites don’t rank any better/worse as a result of using them or not using them.Therefore, if you change … [Read more...] about How to Update Sitemaps After You Change Your Content
Sitemap xml editor
The major search engines have announced an update to the sitemaps.org protocol which enables site owners to store their XML Sitemap files in any location — even on a different domain than the one referenced in the Sitemap. This will be a welcome change for those who manage multiple domains and would like to keep all Sitemap files in one place, as well as for those who would like to store their Sitemap in a location other than the root. The only caveat? You have to be able to edit the robots.txt file of the domain the Sitemap file references. The search engines made the announcement today on the Search Engineers Q&A panel at SMX West. Below, more about how this works and how to implement it on your site. Historically, your Sitemap file had to be stored in the same location as the URLs listed in that Sitemap. For instance: http://www.example.com/sitemap.xml could include:www.example.comwww.example.com/folder1/page1.htmlwww.example.com/folder2.page1.html But it could not … [Read more...] about You Can Now Store Your XML Sitemap Files Anywhere!
Since Google launched XML Sitemaps back in 2005, they’ve added specialized formats to enable site owners to submit content other than web pages. Until now, site owners have had to create separate Sitemaps for each content type: That’s now changed. You can now create a single XML Sitemap that contains any combination of these content types. The Google Webmaster Central blog post doesn’t mention News Sitemaps, so presumably news content can’t be mixed with the other types. Great news for site owners? Possibly. It may be easier to create and maintain a single Sitemap in some cases, but the lowest overhead way to create and maintain Sitemaps generally is via a script that creates and updates the file automatically. And it might be easier to keep track of things separately. Indexing metrics Certainly, from a metrics perspective, it may make sense to keep content types separated. When you submit an XML Sitemap to Google Webmaster Tools, you can see a report of the … [Read more...] about Is the Sitemaps Alliance Over?
In the early days of search engines, I wasn’t much of a believer in XML sitemaps. But over time, I began to see first hand how they can benefit websites. XML sitemaps serve as a way to communicate directly with the search engines, alerting them to new or changed content very quickly and helping to ensure that the content is indexed faster. For content publishers, it’s become critical to help Google specifically understand if your site is the original publisher of content. Why? Panda. Content Syndication, Duplicate Content & Panda It’s not uncommon for publishers to syndicate their content on other websites. Further, it’s also not uncommon for publishers to have their site’s content “curated” by other websites without a formal syndication agreement. Unfortunately, the definition of content curation is fuzzy at best. In a quick Google search for a recent Search Engine Land article, I found over 47 copies of the article on other sites. … [Read more...] about The Importance Of XML Sitemaps In The Age Of Panda
SEO at its most technical level is all about the minutiae. The small, precise details that no-one else may notice, but can make the world of difference to your website’s place on the SERPs. When your hours of tireless fiddling, reiterating and testing pay off with an improved ranking, it can be a genuinely exhilarating feeling. Especially when it results in direct traffic or revenue growth. However, that doesn’t stop the work from being tireless, thankless or, at times, a bit boring. Everyone needs a helping hand, and as an SEO you luckily have a wealth of tools at your disposal to help with your day-to-day maintenance and to speed up the research that goes towards keeping your site healthy. To help you further – and to save you some money – here’s a list of the very best free SEO tools available, which has been compiled from recommendations given to us from our audience of SEO experts on Twitter, as well as priceless individual contributions from SEO … [Read more...] about 26 best expert-recommended free SEO tools