Example 1: A new blog Say, for example, you are starting a new blog. You will want Google to find new posts quickly to make sure your target audience can find your blog on Google, so it’s a good idea to create an XML sitemap right from the start. You might create a handful of first posts and categories for them as well as some tags to start with. But there won’t be enough content yet to fill the tag overview pages, making them “thin content” that’s not valuable to visitors – yet. In this case, you should leave the tag’s URLs out of the XML sitemap for now. Set the tag pages to ‘noindex, follow’ because you don’t want people to find them in search results. … [Read more...] about What is an XML sitemap and why should you have one? • Yoast
Google's Pascal Birchler, who has been with Google since this past January, but worked at WordPress since 2014 prior to that, published a new project where Google and WordPress want to integrate basic XML Sitemaps in WordPress Core and introduce an XML Sitemaps API to make it fully extendable. … [Read more...] about Google Proposes Building XML Sitemaps Into WordPress Core
John said on Twitter it depends "on how they [the sitemap files] were discovered." He said (a) If submitted via anonymous ping, they're only valid there & lower levels and (b) If you submit them through your Search Console account, they can be valid for any verified site or part of a site. … [Read more...] about Google: Does It Matter Where Your XML Sitemap File Is Located?
Organize your sitemap into sub-sitemaps. This has the additional advantages of making sitemaps smaller and faster to process.Submit a separate sitemap for your videos (if applicable).Add your sitemap in robots.txt. I have explained before how to SEO your robots.txt and in addition to that, you can also add the location of your sitemap to help search engines find your sitemap file easier.Include only URLS that Google can access. If you have pages that are blocked by robots or are behind a password-protected area, do not include those pages in the sitemap.Make sure that your XML Sitemap includes the ‘last modification time’ field, a value that gives information to Google as to when a page was last modified. This is useful in cases where you want Google to re-index some pages of your website.Creating an XML Sitemap with Yoast SEO PluginOne of the nice features of Yoast SEO is the Sitemap functionality. … [Read more...] about How to Optimize your XML Sitemap for Maximum SEO
John said "We'd stop fetching sitemap files if the URLs are invalid, but if you're returning content or redirecting (which is kinda recommended), we'll keep trying them. It shouldn't cause problems, since overall sitemap files are only a tiny-tiny part of all URLs fetched from a site." … [Read more...] about Google May Ignore Your XML Sitemap If The URLs Are Invalid