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Glossary keyword - XML sitemap

XML sitemap

An XML sitemap is a document created to outline the structure of a website and list all important pages. It helps search spiders and bots understand your site better and index it. With an XML sitemap, you ensure that no important page is left out by PageRank, even if there are no internal links to these pages. They serve good SEO purposes. Because all relevant pages of your website are likely to rank higher once they are on the sitemap. You can either create your XML sitemap or use special plugins built to perform this function.

 Importance of an XML Sitemap

The good sitemap displays several sitemaps. Examples are page-sitemap.xml, video-sitemap.xml, and post-sitemap.xml. This serves as a categorization that renders a clear road map of your site. A click on one particular index sitemap shows all URLs that fall within that category. For instance, a click on video-sitemap.xml will display all video URLs for your website. XML sitemaps also indicate the dates the contents of each URL were last modified. Dates are also important because Google gives preference to fresh and updated content over old and irrelevant information. Therefore, you want Google’s bots to notice anything you make a change to your web content.

Effective Sitemaps

For large websites like YouTube, you need to divide an index sitemap. This is because one sitemap has a URL limitation of 50,000. Therefore, if your site has video links above this figure, for instance, you’ll require two different ones for video URLs. Thereby adding a video index sitemap. Some site plugins like the set the URL limitation for an index sitemap even lower at 1000. An excellent example of such a plugin is the Yoast SEO plugin. With this approach, they believe your XML sitemaps loads faster and serves its purposes more efficiently. 

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