Arne Brachhold

YAHOO and MSN join the Google Sitemaps program

Filed under: Sitemaps — arne on November 16, 2006

Google, YAHOO, MSNYAHOO and MSN Search have announced that they will support the popular format for XML-Sitemaps which was invented by Google in 2005.

In an encouraging act of collaboration, Google, Yahoo and Microsoft announced tonight that they will all begin using the same Sitemaps protocol to index sites around the web. Now based at Sitemaps.org, the system instructs web masters on how to install an XML file on their servers that all three engines can use to track updates to pages. This should make it easier to get your pages indexed in a simple and standardized way. People who use Google Sitemaps don’t need to change anything, those maps will now be indexed by Yahoo and Microsoft.
Source: TechCrunch

I’ve updated the xml-namespace definitions in the new beta version of my XML-Sitemap Generator for WordPress Plugin to the new sitemaps.org standard.

Yahoo has already updated their Site Explorer so you can submit your sitemap to YAHOO and Google. The guys from MSN are a bit slower and will do some internal tests on their own websites before they open the submission for everyone.

Google Sitemaps FAQ (Sitemap Issues And Errors)

Filed under: SEO,Sitemaps — arne on April 7, 2006

In June 2005, Google announced a new service called Google Sitemaps. This program allows webmaster to submit an index of URLs which they want to have included in Googles web search. It’s free to use and helps Google to get a more complete overview of your pages.

You are looking at the FAQ for the old version (3.x) of the plugin. Please have a look at the new help page for the most recent information.
(Read on …)

Google Sitemap Generator for WordPress 2.7

Filed under: Sitemaps — arne on July 21, 2005

This is just a minor bugfix release. If you are using the "custom pages" feature, I recommend you to update the plugin due to incorrect handling of the last modification date in custom pages, which was displayed as YYYY-DD-MM instead of YYYY-MM-DD.

Changes:

  • Fixed bug with incorrect date format in custom pages
  • Added Swedish Translation by Tobias Bergius

Update 1:

  • Thierry Lanfranchi sent me a French translation of the plugin. Thank you for that! Download the new package to get it!

Update 2:

More Information and Download

Google Sitemap Generator for WordPress 2.6

Filed under: Sitemaps — arne on July 4, 2005

I’m glad to announce a new version of the Google Sitemap Generator for WordPress. This version fixes various issues and introduces some new features:

  • Custom location of the sitemap file:
    Now you can specify a custom location for your sitemap file and place it in your root directory for example. This will allow you to add other URLs which are not in or beneath the Blog directory and didn’t get recognized by Google so far.
  • Filter-Hook for other plugins:
    This plugin has an own WordPress filter, which can be used by other plugins to add their generated pages to the sitemap. Check the source code comments for more details.
  • Fixed error with other extensions:
    The script should now also work with extensions like wp-mail. If there is a reason the plugin might not work due to not included files, it disables itself.
  • Fixed bug with missing trailing slash:
    The Home URL has now always a trailing slash at the end.

(Read on …)

Google Sitemap Generator for WordPress 2.5

Filed under: Sitemaps — arne on June 15, 2005

Hi there!

Thanks for the great support and popularity of my Google Sitemap Generator to all the users and Bloggers who linked to me, especially to Michael Nguyen from socialpatterns.com who had the idea at first of all.

Since Monday, 6 June 2005 over 3500 people visited my Blog and downloaded the current version about 2800 times.

Special thanks go to the contributors who told me about fixes and supplied code templates:
Rodney Shupe for SQL improvements, James and John for the Google-Ping code template, Brad and Christian Aust for bug reports and Hirosama for translating the plugin into Japanese and made translations possible at all.

Today I released a new version of the script, which introduces the ability to include external files which are not part of WordPress and also tell Google automatically about changes via Google Ping. A small new feature is the ability to define a minimum post priority which will override the calculated value (if activated). The work was done on Monday, 13 June but I decided to wait for two days beta testing and language pack creation before making it public.

If you still find any bugs or errors, please don’t hesitate to inform me via mail or comment.

I will move the plugin in the next few days to dev.wp-plugins.org to enable versioning and SVN access. A One-Click-Installer for wp-plugins.net was also planned, but the needed plugin "WordPress Plugin Manager" was temporary discontinued. Stay tuned for upcoming releases with new features.

More Information and Download

Update: (2005-06-16)
César Gómez Martín sent me a Spanish translation file.

Second Update: (2005-06-20)
Stefano Aglietti sent me an Italian translation file. Thanks for the good work!

Third Update: (2005-06-23)
Kirin Lin sent me a Traditional Chinese translation file! Many thanks for this! Download the full package with language files to get it :)

Google Sitemap Generator v2 (BETA)

Filed under: Sitemaps — arne on June 5, 2005

I had a little bit time this morning so I improved my Google Sitemaps Generator…

Features:

  • WordPress Plugin Support (just copy it in your plugin directory and activate it)
  • Administration UI (Customize setting like change frequency, page priorities and automatic priority calculation from your WordPress Admin Center)
  • Includes Homepage, Posts, Static Pages, Categories and Archives
  • Creates a static xml file called sitemap.xml in your blog directory
  • Gets automatic rebuilt if you edit/write/publish a post
  • Calculates post priority depending on the number of comments

Note: This new version is still beta and I’m still at testing. You can try it out and report any errors/mistakes/suggest to my email. If you can, test it under an other copy/backup of you blog… It’s still beta and may have bugs!!

Installation:
Download the zip Archive and extract the sitemap.php and in your wp-content/plugins directory. Then look in your admin page under Plugins and activate it. Now you can click on Options -> Sitemap and configure your settings. Update or write a post to start the first sitemap generation.

Note: I’m not a WordPress expert and this is my first plugin. I read The Plugin API and Writing a Plugin at the WordPress pages. If you are more familiar with WordPress plugins and see something strange/not recommended please tell me! Also the registered actions (add_action) which start sitemap generation may be redundant.

Update: I included a Manual Rebuild button in the options page so you don’t need to edit a post to start the generation at the first time. Beta Testers are welcome :)

WordPress Sitemap Generator for Google

Filed under: Sitemaps — arne on June 5, 2005

Google announced yesterday a new tool for webmasters. The Google Sitemaps! You can submit you sitemap to Google and allow them to find all your pages without crawling every link. You can read more about this cool feature at searchenginewatch.com.

I created a small php file which will do the generation of the sitemap in a Google compliant format for you. At the moment, only posts, home page and static pages are supported. If you have better knowledge of WordPress than me, feel free to modify the script and include category pages etc.

Every URL in the sitemap may have a priority which represents the page priority on your website. My script calculates the it on the number of comments. This should be ok for most blogs, maybe i will add the post date to priority generation later.

Installation is easy! Just download the sitemap.php and place it in your blog directory. Then tell Google Sitemaps the URL and all should be fine :)

If you want you can alter the default configuration for various settings like the change frequenty of posts etc. Just have a look at the top of the php file.

I’ve tested it on this site ( WP1.5.1.1 ) and with a XML Schema validator. If you find an error or if it doesn’t work on your site, please drop me a mail or write a comment and I will have a look at your site.

UPDATE:
I included support for archive pages. Just download the new version 1.1 again. :)
Archive pages will have a predefined priority which can be customized.

UPDATE 2:
It get’s allmost complete ;)
Added support for categorie pages. They will also habe a predefined priority which can be customized.
Download the current version at the links above.

Suggestions / Todo
- Autogenerate priority of categories (maybe by postcount?)
- Use correct lastMod in categories and archives (find last post)

UPDATE 3:
Check the beta of the new version at Google Sitemap Generator v2 (BETA) which comes as a WordPress Plugin and a grahpical administration page!