My sitemap generator has created a sitemap.xml and sitemap.xml.gz file. Should I include just the .gz file in the robots.txt or both?

And does it do any harm to submit both sitemaps to Google et al?

  • Doesn't make a difference, a lot of sites nowadays don't even use robots.txt all together. Adding the site map to WMT is more than enough. Commented Jul 28, 2015 at 16:24
  • 1
    If both contain the same information, why submit both? What would be the point in that? Just submit one. The gz version should be a compressed version of the text sitemap. The gz file should download faster. Please understand that for most sites, a sitemap is nearly entirely useless. Sites that recommend that you submit a sitemap are completely wrong in suggesting it wholesale. Only sites that cannot be crawled, are extremely large, have a paywall or login should worry about a sitemap. Otherwise, it is a waste of effort, time, and bandwidth.
    – closetnoc
    Commented Jul 28, 2015 at 16:24

1 Answer 1


As Closetnoc mentioned in his comment, GZ is just a compressed version of your text sitemap. So my answer to your question

Should I include just the .gz file in the robots.txt or both?

There is no point in submitting both sitemap.xml as well as sitemap.xml.gz. Most of the search engine bots can read the compressed content. So if you are submitting sitemap.xml it's enough or sitemap.xml.gz is enough.

does it do any harm to submit both sitemaps to Google

I don't find any valuable source to say that Google will harm you in this case also from this page you can see that you will not be penalized by Google.

Google - Webmaster Support on Sitemaps: "Google doesn't guarantee that we'll crawl or index all of your URLs. However, we use the data in your Sitemap to learn about your site's structure, which will allow us to improve our crawler schedule and do a better job crawling your site in the future. In most cases, webmasters will benefit from Sitemap submission, and in no case will you be penalized for it."

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    Answering "no" to an either/or question when the first part is correct doesn't make sense.
    – MrWhite
    Commented Jul 28, 2015 at 18:08

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