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I am looking for the best resources on how to build sitemaps.

I am currently aware of the obvious HTML sitemaps and the (google) sitemap.xml and (yahoo) urllist.txt

Anyone know of resources for these and or other sitemaps I should be aware of - that would aid in the SEO of my site

Thanks.

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4 Answers

The standard XML sitemap can be submitted to the three major search engines so you don't really need to bother with urllist.txt.

For automatic creation of sitemaps, have a search for scripts that can generate sitemaps for you, or roll your own - I wrote a PHP script for one of my sites to generate the sitemap since the site is mostly database generated.

You can submit an RSS Feed as a sitemap to Google and Yahoo (and maybe Bing), which is useful for frequently updated content such as news/blogs. Plus if your feed is auto-generated (through WordPress et al) then you don't need to manually update it.

There are also Google's extensions to the sitemap format for images and videos - the latter looks fairly complex but if you work through the linked help guide you should pick it up.

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I'd just create an XML sitemap conforming to the http://www.sitemaps.org/ protocol which is supported by all the major search engines (including Google, Yahoo and Bing). No need for anything else.

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And link to it from robots.txt –  JasonBirch Aug 3 '10 at 7:56
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I often use this tool to generate quick n dirty XML site maps for static sites. You just give it the URL of your site and it will generate a sitemap for you to download (wget friendly link, at that).

Most dynamic sites that I build either generate a new sitemap whenever any content has changed, or generate a site map on the fly whenever it is requested. Most popular CMS / blogging systems have a variety of modules / plug-ins that will accomplish this for you.

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If you have a large website, you can use a crawler to scan your website and generate a sitemap.

One such tool I have experience with is Microsys A1 Sitemap Generator, can also be used to verify your PageRank sculpting, squash those identical <title> tags you have and generally build a good balanced ranking priority for the crawled pages.

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