Google XML Sitemaps

July 21, 2010

Wordpress Plugins

Google XML Sitemaps

Google XML Sitemaps is a very popular wordpress plugin that you can use in your wordpress driven website to generate XML sitemaps of all your posts and pages. This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your blog. With such a sitemap, it’s much easier for the crawlers to see the complete structure of your site and retrieve it more efficiently. The plugin supports all kinds of WordPress generated pages as well as custom URLs. Additionally it notifies all major search engines every time you create a post about the new content.

Installation Instructions

  1. Download the plugin first. To get the download link please check the bottom section of this page.
  2. Upload the full directory into your wp-content/plugins directory
  3. Use your favorite FTP program to create two files in your WordPress directory (that’s where the wp-config.php is) named sitemap.xml and sitemap.xml.gz and make them writable via CHMOD 666. More information about CHMOD and how to make files writable is available at the WordPress Codex and on stadtaus.com. Making your whole blog directory writable is NOT recommended anymore due to security reasons.
  4. Activate the plugin at the plugin administration page
  5. Open the plugin configuration page, which is located under Options -> XML-Sitemap and build the sitemap the first time. If you get a permission error, check the file permissions of the newly created files.
  6. The plugin will automatically update your sitemap of you publish a post, so theres nothing more to do

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Question: There are no comments yet (or I’ve disabled them) and all my postings have a priority of zero!
  • Answer: Please disable automatic priority calculation and define a static priority for posts.
  • Question: Do I always have to click on “Rebuild Sitemap” if I modified a post?
  • Answer: No, if you edit/publish/delete a post, your sitemap is automatically regenerated
  • Question: So much configuration options… Do I need to change them?
  • Answer: No, only if you want to. Default values should be ok!
  • Question: Does this plugin work with all WordPress versions?
  • Answer: This version works with WordPress 2.1 and better. If you’re using an older version (or any newer version), please check the Google Sitemaps Plugin Homepage for the legacy releases. There is a working release for every WordPress version since 1.5
  • Question: I get an fopen and / or permission denied error or my sitemap files could not be written
  • Answer: If you get permission errors, make sure that the script has the right to overwrite the sitemap.xml and sitemap.xml.gz files. Try to create the sitemap.xml resp. sitemap.xml.gz at manually and upload them with a ftp program and set the rights with CHMOD to 666 (or 777 if 666 still doesn’t work). Then restart sitemap generation on the administration page. A good tutorial for changing file permissions can be found on the WordPress Codex and at stadtaus.com.
  • Question: My question isn’t answered here
  • Answer: Most of the plugin options are described at the plugin homepage as well as the dedicated Google Sitemap FAQ
  • Question: My question isn’t even answered there
  • Answer: Please post your question at the WordPress support forum and tag your post with “google-sitemap-generator”.
  • Question: What’s new in the latest version?
  • Answer: The changelog is maintained on here

Screenshot of the Plugin Admin Panel

Other Notes

License

Good news, this plugin is free for everyone! Since it’s released under the GPL, you can use it free of charge on your personal or commercial blog.

Translations

The plugin comes with various translations, please refer to the WordPress Codex for more information about activating the translation. If you want to help to translate the plugin to your language, please have a look at the sitemap.pot file which contains all definitions and may be used with a gettext editor likePoedit (Windows).

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About Souvik Banerjee

Web Developer and SEO Specialist with 10+ years of experience in open source web development. He is also the moderator of this blog (www.rswebsols.com)

View all posts by Souvik Banerjee

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2 Responses to “Google XML Sitemaps”

  1. Jon Says:

    I also recommend this plugin. I overlooked changing the files to writable the 1st time around, but after that, it’s been smooth sailing. Good info and review, thanks!

    Reply

  2. Resale Centre Says:

    Google XML sitemaps by Arne Brachhold is for me the best sitemap generator for WP hands down. I have used a few sitemap alternatives for wordpress but none are as easy to use, stylish and well supported as this plugin. A must for every WP website out there.

    Reply

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