Google XML Sitemaps by Arne Brachhold is a well known and extremely popular plugin, but is it necessary if you’re using WordPress SEO by Yoast? In this post we’ll take a look at the sitemap capabilities of both plugins and the ups and downsides of using one or the other.
Before we get started however, it’s important to be extra-clear that WordPress SEO by Yoast provides many more features than simply the ability to create sitemaps. Put simply: WordPress SEO by Yoast is about the best SEO plugin available… In this article however, I’ll be looking at only Yoast’s sitemap features (and comparing them to those of Google XML Sitemaps).
Before getting into the specific plugins, let’s dig a little deeper into what a sitemap is. Sitemaps.org is a good way to get started, this is the official page for the XML sitemap format. The first paragraph sums things up well:
Sitemaps are an easy way for webmasters to inform search engines about pages on their sites that are available for crawling. In its simplest form, a Sitemap is an XML file that lists URLs for a site along with additional metadata about each URL (when it was last updated, how often it usually changes, and how important it is, relative to other URLs in the site) so that search engines can more intelligently crawl the site