Recent Q&A from Google on Google Sitemaps

Written by Ross Dunn

Google Webmaster Central Blog logoSusan Moskwa and Trever Voucher from Google’s Webmaster Tools Team published a synopsis of the questions they received at Chicago’s recent Search Engine Strategies Conference. If you have ever had a question about Google Sitemaps and the effect they may or may not have on your site, this is a helpful read.

Get the answers to the following questions:

* I submitted a Sitemap, but my URLs haven’t been [crawled/indexed] yet. Isn’t that what a Sitemap is for?

* If it doesn’t get me automatically crawled and indexed, what does a Sitemap do?

* Will a Sitemap help me rank better?

* If I set all of my pages to have priority 1.0, will that make them rank higher (or get crawled faster) than someone else’s pages that have priority 0.8?

* Is there any point in submitting a Sitemap if all the metadata (, , etc.) is the same for each URL, or if I’m not sure it’s accurate?

* I’ve heard about people who submitted a Sitemap and got penalized shortly afterward. Can a Sitemap hurt you?

* Where can I put my Sitemap? Does it have to be at the root of my site?

* Can I just submit the site map that my webmaster made of my site? I don’t get this whole XML thing.

* Which Sitemap format is the best?

* If I have multiple URLs that point to the same content, can I use my Sitemap to indicate my preferred URL for that content?

* Does the placement of a URL within a Sitemap file matter? Will the URLs at the beginning of the file get better treatment than the URLs near the end?

* If my site has multiple sections (e.g. a blog, a forum, and a photo gallery), should I submit one Sitemap for the site, or multiple Sitemaps (one for each section)?

Again here is the link to the Google sitemaps Q&A.

About the Author:
Ross Dunn is CEO/Founder of StepForth Web Marketing Inc., which provides the search engine placement and SEO services required to beat your competition and improve your web site visibility.