Friday, February 10, 2012

Using A Robust Sitemap, With Your Blog

For a Blogger blog, proper indexing by the search engines is critical to the success of the blog, in getting readers.

Some blog owners are disappointed to find that their blog has no page rank, and no visibility in the search engine results - and little to no chances for getting readers.

Not all blog owners understand details about the custom domain migration process, any issues related to renaming the blog, or simply how to get a blog properly indexed.

One of the most useful tools, that you as a blog owner can use, is the sitemap.

With a Blogger blog, that is typically a collection of posts indexed by date and maybe by topic, the sitemap, properly presented to the search engines, helps the search engines index all of the posts methodically.
Submit a Sitemap to tell Google about pages on your site we might not otherwise discover.
That's the simple advice, from Google, which you should see.

When I created this blog, and submitted my first sitemap, Google setup a default.
http://bloggerstatusforreal.blogspot.com/feeds/posts/default?orderby=updated
Had you looked at the "robots.txt" file, when this blog was published as "bloggerstatusforreal.blogspot.com", that's what you would have seen.

Having later published this blog as "blogging.nitecruzr.net", Google setup a new default sitemap.
http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default?orderby=updated
You may look at my current "robots.txt" file, and that's what you will see.

The default sitemap indexes the most recent 26 posts. For most blogs, especially new ones, you will seldom publish more than that number between each indexing pass by the search engines - and a 26 posts submission is generally sufficient.

For a blog that's been published for a while, and has more than 26 posts, you will need a more robust sitemap than the default. When you change the URL of the blog, or when you use Jump Break on main page posts, you need a sitemap complement that indexes each individual post, one by one.

Note that any sitemap will be much more useful, with the blog publishing a "Full" feed.

In the example of this blog, which now has over 1,500 posts, I would add 4 sitemaps (each sitemap to submit a maximum of 500 posts)
  1. http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/atom.xml?redirect=false&start-index=1&max-results=500
  2. http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/atom.xml?redirect=false&start-index=501&max-results=500
  3. http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/atom.xml?redirect=false&start-index=1001&max-results=500
  4. http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/atom.xml?redirect=false&start-index=1501&max-results=500

Having added the right complement of sitemaps, you watch the display in the Sitemaps wizard:
Submitted URLs
1,539
1,535 URLs in web index
Having submitted those sitemaps last week, 1,535 out of 1,539 posts, allowing for some search engine indexing latency, is about right. Your blog, having a different number of posts, may use a different complement of sitemaps - but you can use a similar strategy, in determining the number to use.

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3 comments:

Steve said...

Thank you so much for the help you provide I did my google sitemap just like the one above and it worked great but...Bing for some reason the sitemap on Bing is still pending and I'm getting hardly any traffic from Bing. do you have a Idea of a how to do a better sitemap on Bing? Thanks again

Srikaanth P.A said...

I've been searching for this info all over the internet...
i was worried that my blog-techterrain.blogspot.in was not being indexed.

Thank you so much Chuck.
keep up the good work.

Winnie said...

That's a useful post, I wasn't sure if I needed to add my own sitemaps to blogger, because someone told me that it was not needed . I also didn't know that I could repeat the procedure until all the posts are covered, by the sitemaps, because I thought that the second and third etc would repeat the first one sent and only 500 would be considered.