I have a search based navigation web-site. Each query has filters as well as sort-by. The search results point to end-pages inside the site. Each of those pages has many outlinks to other end-pages. Currently I have a XML sitemap which directs crawlers to all the end pages. I'm trying to add a silo sitemap directory to improve SEO. Assuming this is the right direction I have a couple of options:

  1. end pages sorted alphabetically.
  2. Pages by major search filters, and then divide alphabetically.
  3. Pages for every filter and cross option between them and the sort-by.

Which would you recommend and why?

NOTE: I'm not referring to a XML sitemap.

  • Are you talking about how the URLs are sorted/grouped within the Sitemap itself? – GDVS Sep 22 '12 at 16:36
  • Yes. As far as I understand this makes the pages reachable in low-depth and also helps gain more SEO by grouping the pages. – Noam Sep 22 '12 at 16:52

None. The order in which URLs appear in a Sitemap, or how they're grouped, doesn't have any known effect for SEO. It also doesn't affect public-facing site maps. The issue of link order on a page is discussed in this video by Google engineer Matt Cutts.

Incidentally, there's a convention that the S in XML Sitemap is capitalised, which helps to avoid the sort of confusion we encountered in the comments.

  • I assume from your link my question wasn't clear. I wasn't referring to a XML sitemap. I was referring to a navigation-able that build a site directory that is able to reach most/all pages in several clicks, and also group them. – Noam Sep 23 '12 at 6:31
  • @Noam I asked if you were referring to the Sitemap; you said "yes" – can't be much clearer than that. In any case, same applies to public-facing site maps. – GDVS Sep 23 '12 at 11:15

I wasn't quite sure if you're referring to an XML sitemap that you submit to Google via the Webmaster tools or a public sitemap that is included within your page.

For XML sitemaps, you can provide a <priority></priority> tag that you can denote certain pages to be given higher precedence for search engines to crawl.

  • I wasn't referring to a XML sitemap. Trying to add a navigation-able links to all pages through a directory. – Noam Sep 23 '12 at 6:29

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