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How to create an XML Sitemap

You can generate XML Sitemaps in Sitebulb, using the URLs from our website audit software as the source.

The first step is to crawl the website, and once Sitebulb has finished crawling, click on the XML Sitemap Generator link at the bottom of the side menu.

The audit overview page in Sitebulb

Please Note: Only HTML pages will be included in the XML Sitemap that are both successful (i.e. with a 200 response status) and indexable.

Select Crawl Sources

Here you can choose what crawl sources you wish to include in your sitemap:

  • Crawler - Indexable URLs found via the Crawler will be included in the XML Sitemap.
  • Google Analytics - Indexable URLs extracted via Google Analytics will be included in the XML Sitemap.
  • Google Search ConsoleIndexable URLs extracted via Google Search Console will be included in the XML Sitemap.
  • Include Downloads Sitemap - Sitebulb will produce an additional XML Sitemap that only contains URLs with downloadable content types (e.g. PDFs, Word Docs, exe files, etc...)

The crawl sources that appear as options in this section will change depending on what audit options you selected (e.g. Google Analytics will only appear here if enable in your audit).

XML Sitemap generator crawl sources settings

Priority

Include the "Priority" attribute to indicate to the search engines the relative importance of different URLs, from 0.0 to 1.0 (1.0 being the highest priority). Search engines apply many factors to determine their own understanding of crawl priority, so the priority attribute in sitemaps is not necessary but can be optionally included and customized.

You can configure these based on the depth of the URLs and select priority via the dropdown boxes.

XML Sitemap generator priority settings

Change Frequency

Include the "changefreq" attribute to indicate to search engines how often the page content tends to change. Search engines apply their own heuristics to determine how frequently they need to visit each page, so the changefreq attribute in sitemaps is not necessary but can be optionally included and customized.

You can configure these based on the depth of the URLs and select frequency via the dropdown boxes.

XML Sitemaps generator frequency settings

Images

  • Include Images - Include the image references in the generated XML Sitemap, to increase the likelihood that images can be found in image search results. These will be included for all URLs that contain images, nested under the URL they are contained in.
  • Include Image Alt Text - Include all text as the <image:title> in XML Sitemaps, to give search engines a better understanding of what the image represents.
  • Maximum Referencing URLs - Typically, you would not wish to include logos or socials profile icons in image sitemaps, since they are typically included on most (if not all) pages on the site. Limiting the number of referencing URLs ensures these sort of images do not get included (e.g. images of the products would only be found on 1 or 2 pages typically).
  • Image CDN URLs - By default, the XML Sitemap will only include internal images, which means Image URLs on the same root domain as your Start URL. To include images which reside on an external CDN or even a 'fake CDN' subdomains on the website (e.g. assets.yoursite.com), please include them in the box, one per line. Simply list root domains or subdomains where images are hosted.

XML Sitemaps image settings

Generate Sitemap

Once you have selected your options, click on the green Generate XML Sitemap button to start the generation process.

How to generate an XML Sitemap in Sitebulb

It will then ask you where you wish to save your sitemap and will then start generating.

XML Sitemap generation has completed

When this has been completed you can view your newly generated XML Sitemap, which you can open in something like Notepad to view.

It should look something like this:

viewing the XML Sitemap generated code

Here is an example of an XML Sitemap with the Priority option also selected:

viewing the XML Sitemap with priority generated code

Google Search Console

Now you have created your XML Sitemap it is probably a good idea to submit it to Google Via Google Search Console so you can keep track of indexing.

Submitting your XML Sitemap to Google Search Console