For some reasons, I want to delete the sitemap.xml from my website. Will it have a negative impact in Google SEO ranking ?

4 Answers 4


I'm going to post a controversial reply that many will likely disagree with. Is sitemap.xml still necessary? It's no longer crucial, no. Is it good to have, and does it help? Sure. Should you delete it? Can't say, because I don't know what your aforementioned reasons are.

Take a look at this article, written by my former colleague with many years of experience in the fields of SEO, UX, and web dev; I agree with a lot of this:


If you don't actively update your sitemap and don't submit it in GSC or Bing Webmaster, then you probably don't need it. A sitemap is a suggestion to search engines about how your site should be crawled. Thus, think about sites such as news sites, with hundreds of thousands of pages: sitemaps have size limitations, so for news sites they don't contain every article published, but those articles are found, indexed, and ranked anyway.

If your website is regularly updated; has a clear information architecture and category hierarchy; and includes a well-planned internal linking structure, search engines will eventually index and rank the content, regardless of the sitemap's existence.

However, do keep in mind that you'll lose the ability to submit the sitemap manually in GSC, which re-triggers a crawl. You'll also lose the ability to suggest to search engines which parts of your site are most important, or what the latest articles are.

Many SEO's still say that XML sitemaps are crucial, but that's conventional SEO wisdom. Crucial is not how I'd define it; helpful is more like it, from what I've observed in the last few years. As for your case, it'll depend on your reasons for deleting it, and on how much you maintain it currently.

  • 1
    Note: Sitemaps can be split into multiple files (with a "sitemap index") to get around the size limitations. This lets you list potentially up to billions of pages in your sitemap files. support.google.com/webmasters/answer/75712?hl=en Commented Apr 25, 2019 at 17:20
  • @MaximillianLaumeister Absolutely. CSM plugins like Yoast do this automatically, too, even for small websites. The downside here is, a sitemap with that many links may exhaust the site's crawl budget without pointing out which bits are more crucial to crawl. (Though lastmod metadata can help to alleviate that, to a degree.) Commented Apr 25, 2019 at 17:47
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    It shouldn't be controversial. Sitemaps have minimal impact on SEO. They don't help rankings and most sites are crawlable even without them. If a site can't be crawled,a sitemap will help a little but only making it crawlable will really optimize it for search engines. Commented Apr 25, 2019 at 22:04
  • @StephenOstermiller Agree. I think with time, more people in our profession will come around to this point of view. Commented Apr 26, 2019 at 4:47

Yes sure. You can delete your site map.xml. Just head to the root directory of website and find the site map.xml file and delete it.

In the perspective of SEO sitemap is too crucial because it provides the definite roadmap of your website to the googlebot. And its make easier for the bot to find your website pages. You should not delete the sitemap. It helps


I would recommend you to update the sitemap rather than deleting it. Make whatsoever changes you want to make and use the attribute of last modified date in the sitemap. Which will inform the googlebots that you made some changes which should be considered.

For more details you can read this article which was posted on Aug 17, 2017


As deleting the sitemap is not an seo freindly practice unless you want to shut down your website.


You can delete your website sitemap in the root directory of the website. For your website to difficult to crawl and index your webpage. Sitemap defines all internal page information to index on which website content.

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