An XML sitemap is a popular format of sitemap that helps search engines index websites more efficiently. The Sitemap protocol is supported by Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Ask.
Unlike HTML sitemaps, XML sitemaps aren't used or seen by visitors; instead, the XML-based Sitemap protocol provides search engines with meta data about individual pages of a website, in addition to their URLs.
Creating and submitting an XML sitemap is especially useful for websites that have pages that aren't easily crawled, such as with dynamic websites and less accessible technologies such as flash and AJAX.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> <urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9"> <url> <loc>http://www.springboardseo.com/</loc> <lastmod>2013-04-04</lastmod> <changefreq>weekly</changefreq> <priority>1.0</priority> </url> <url> <loc>http://www.springboardseo.com/services/</loc> <lastmod>2013-04-04</lastmod> <changefreq>monthly</changefreq> <priority>0.8</priority> </url> <url> <loc>http://www.springboardseo.com/services/seo/</loc> <lastmod>2013-04-04</lastmod> <changefreq>monthly</changefreq> <priority>0.5</priority> </url> </urlset>
XML sitemap tags include:
<url>:Indicates the information that changes for each URL (Required tag)
<loc>:Contains the absolute URL or locator for a page (Required tag)
<lastmod>:Specifies when the file was last updated
<changefreq>:Indicates how often a file is usually changed
<priority>:Indicates the file's relative importance within the site
Avoid the temptation of setting every URL to daily frequency and maximum priority, as unrealistic settings risk having the sitemap completely ignored by search engines.
Creating large sitemaps manually is unrealistic for even those truly dedicated to manual markup. We recommend using one of the third party sitemap generators below (You can always optimize your sitemap once it's generated):
After placing the sitemap in the website's root directory, let the search engine's know it's there. You may:
Note: Everything after
/ping?sitemap= must be url encoded, as in the example above.
A successful request will return an HTTP 200 response code.