In my first weeks at Atlassian, I was seeking for a quick-win to get a stronger foothold within the company and evangelize SEO. So, I audited our main site and noticed it didn’t have an XML sitemap. What an easy win! I went to the devs and asked them to activate it in the CMS. To my surprise, they told me that it wasn’t possible; I was baffled. After some thinking, I remembered that Screaming Frog had an XML sitemap function, so I scraped the site and uploaded the crawl as an XML sitemap. Google ate it within a few seconds, and we saw a noticeable impact on our traffic in the following days. The moral of the story is that XML sitemaps are important and sometimes underrated. What XML Sitemaps Are and Why You Need to Have One XML sitemaps are digital maps that help Google discover important pages on your site and how often they are being updated. Google states on its help center page: A sitemap tells the crawler which files you think are important in your site, and also … [Read more...] about The Best XML Sitemap Tools, Tips, and Tricks
Why sitemap xml is important
A well-defined brand no longer guarantees search placement. It is only through enterprise-level cultural changes, informed by a close monitoring of search evolution, that sustained SEO success can occur. Yes, brands are still a very strong signal when it comes to ranking, however, recent advancements like “authorship rank” and Search Plus Your World have hyper-focused our promotion strategies. A presumption of entitlement drives many legacy brands to complacency. Too often, we see an organization enjoy a few years of strong search results and then relax into “we’ve got that covered” mode, allowing its focus, vital resources and attention to shift to other initiatives. But it is essential for any in-house marketer/SEO/embedded strategist to push past the corporate ego and bureaucracy to assess and identify changing technical / editorial barriers while protecting the protocol vital to traffic success. Who’s Watching The Watchers? The first sign of … [Read more...] about Why So Many Companies Fail At Enterprise SEO
I apologize for talking yet again about hreflang — but there is an important point I really want to make for those working in geo-targeting. For some, “hreflang” is becoming an auto-reflex, and that’s definitely not helping their international success. Allow me to explain why. A quick recap of hreflang first. Hreflang is an attribute which can be added to a link element in a page head, an HTTP header or an XML sitemap to indicate a geographic or linguistic preference for a URL; thus, enabling search engines to serve the correct page to searchers based on their language or location. Currently, both Google and Yandex support hreflang. Sounds great, doesn’t it? In many ways it is — but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s always the answer. 1. Size & Scale Matter Let’s say you have a basic blog, and you want to target English speakers in the US, the UK and South Africa. You create the same content, but with slight regional variations … [Read more...] about 3 Reasons Why Deploying Hreflang Shouldn’t Be An Auto-Reflex!
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
Imagine a version of Google where any search you do on your mobile will serve results from not just the mobile web but the apps on your phone too… Then wouldn’t it be great if you could choose how you viewed the page when clicking through? Either on the mobile web or via an app already downloaded to your phone, which automatically opens up and serves you content from deep inside (say a news story from The Guardian app, or a public event on Facebook). It’s a multi-platform, channel agnostic world where everything connected to the internet can be searchable! And perhaps a powerful argument for not buying that WiFi enabled underwear drawer. Either way, the presence of apps in mobile search results are becoming a more common occurrence as developers can now allow Google to index their content from all over your mobile phone. So what does this mean for mobile users and app developers? Let’s answer a few important questions… What is indexing? Google … [Read more...] about What is app indexing and why is it important?