Pulse Commerce provides a Sitemap Generator to help you automate the process of creating a Google Sitemap.
The Sitemap Generator generates a sitemap file for your Pulse Commerce store as per XML Sitemap Format specifications. The sitemap file is a way of telling Google about your site’s structure and will enable easier indexing of the site by Google.
There are 2 main kinds of sitemaps:
1. Category and Custom Pages
This sitemap is for non-product pages and custom content pages that are not direct product pages.
2. Product Pages
This sitemap can either include top-level products and product groups, or can include child SKUs as well. 99% of the time you will want to use Product and Product Group (No Child SKU's)
You will need to generate both of these types of sitemaps.
Generate Sitemaps using Pulse Commerce:
- Navigate to Marketing > Sitemap Generator (SEO)
- Click on each sitemap link to access the respective sitemap.
Note: You should either use either the Product and Product Group (No Child SKU's), OR the Product (Child SKU's) product sitemap, in addition to the Category & Custom Page sitemap. In almost all situations, the Product and Product Group (No Child SKU's) sitemap is the correct choice.
Note: For product sitemaps, you can either download a sitemap with URLs only, or a sitemap with image paths as well. This choice depends on your business model and preferences.
- Download the sitemaps to your local computer.
- Review the sitemaps, editing as needed.
The sitemaps are in XML format. This can be opened via notepad or other text editor. Please review the file and ensure that no test products are submitted. You also may want to review the file to ensure all links are using SEO optimized URLs:
- Rename the sitemap files
The common names for sitemaps are as follows:
Type Sitemap Name Category and Custom Pages sitemap.xml Product (with or without child SKUs) sitemap_products.xml
- Upload the sitemaps via FTP, to the correct folder
Sitemaps should be located in the /custompages/sitemaps/ folder, and should have the corrected names from the previous step. You should overwrite the existing files with the new sitemaps of the same names. If the names do not match, you should rename your sitemaps to the sitemap names in the /custompages/sitemaps/ folder.
You can learn more about using FTP here:
How do I configure FileZilla to use SSL FTP (FTPS)?
- Update the sitemap index
There is a 3rd sitemap file; sitemap_index.xml
This file is an index file to show where your sitemaps are. All you need to do is update the date/timestamps to reflect the latest changes.
Note: If you change your sitemap names you will need to also change the paths in this file.
- Check uploaded filepaths
Check and confirm the sitemaps are uploaded correctly by copy/pasting the paths below and adding it to the end of your domain name in an internet browser:
Ensuring your sitemaps are properly configured on Google:
- Log into https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools, and select Sitemaps to navigate to the sitemap section
- Confirm sitemap location paths
Ensure the sitemap, sitemap_products, and sitemap_index XML paths in Google Webmaster tools are correct.
- Resubmit sitemaps
Check the boxes for all three sitemaps (1), and Resubmit (2)
- Check for errors
Sometimes your sitemap submissions may contain errors. If so, investigate the error pages, and resolve the issues so your site does not have any bad datapoints.
The Product (Child SKU's) sitemap, and the Bing and Yahoo sitemap formats exist in case you need these formats for some (non-sitemap) purpose. The Google sitemap format is the standard sitemap format. Even Yahoo and Bing use it.