Assuming one develops a website where the layout of pages depends on the device (PC, smartphone, etc...) - in other words it follows the responsive web design principles - should one create one or two sitemaps for Google (I mean a traditional sitemap and a mobile sitemap)? Or is two redundant?

Update: Found out that Google says it will detect media queries with smart-phone width values. Therefore, in this case, two sitemaps are not necessary.

Update II: John Mueller of Google said they treat smartphone URLs the same as desktop URLs. This confirms that it is not necessary to create one sitemap for desktop and one for smartphone.

However, if one delivers specific content for mobile phones (which are not SmartPhones), then a separate sitemap will help.

3 Answers 3


For an average website that supports both rel="canonical" links for both m.domain.com and www.domain.com should only ever need to use 1 sitemap by using Annotation in Sitemaps.

So even if your website is responsive or supports both using different URL you should only ever need to use one sitemap (for standard sites).

Now since your question is about responsive you I'll answer it more directly, no you only need one sitemap and you don't even need to worry about using annotation since Googlebot-Mobile understands media queries once you have used the view point markup i.e <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width" /> and within your CSS only screen and (max-width: 640px).


My currency website supports both mobile and desktop browsers at the same URLs. It isn't responsive, it uses server side user agent detection to serve the correct version of the page.

I submit two sitemaps through webmaster tools. It appears that Google mostly ignores the mobile sitemap for me. They don't complain about it, but it doesn't report any of the pages in it are "indexed". I get mobile traffic, but the sitemap doesn't appear to be doing anything.

I leave it submitted in webmaster tools in case Google decides to do something with it in the future.


Yes you can create a mobile specific sitemap like outline here http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=34648

  • 1
    But, can or should? May 19, 2013 at 18:29
  • Thats really a personal preference I usually use just one sitemap. and remember that sitemaps won't neccesarily improve your ranking but will just ensure that your sites are indexed more quickly so if you want your site indexed more quickly you should it. here is another article that might help you make up your mind. yoast.com/why-you-should-not-use-xml-sitemaps May 19, 2013 at 18:36

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