26 Comments

  1. Marcus Tibesar

    We have a private archive that we never want to be crawled by the search engines.

    Hopefully, there will be an on/off switch for sitemaps…

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  2. Nick

    Having a XML sitemap in the core is the right thing to do in my opinion. This should have been a priority years ago, as well as full caching solution, and backup/migration tools.

    If we are serious about making WP the internet’s OS, these 3 things are necessary…

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  3. Horst W.

    Indexing users/authors by default contradicts all kind of privacy and security features of various plugins and tutorials, needs to be opt-in.

    Also every post type and taxonomy needs to be opt-in for sitemaps, no matter of existing “public” settings, especially categories and tags.

    Adding this to core sounds like another not so well tought through idea, very similar to Gutenberg push into core in an at least early beta stage.

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    • Thierry Muller

      The purpose of Sitemaps is to help/speed up content discovery, not to indicate what should or shouldn’t be indexed. Whether or not a website has a sitemaps, every public URLs may be indexed by search engines (unless excluded via the robots.txt or no-index tag).

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  4. Trishan Mehta

    This is a very welcome addition to the WordPress core. I am sure XML sitemaps in WordPress core will be good for SEO from the word go and we will not have to rely on assorted plugins to add a sitemap.

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  5. Taylor Lovett

    I’m excited to see this make its way into core but also am wary of some of the performance pitfalls that are somewhat inescapable without system level tools e.g. cron and CLI.

    At 10up, we’ve created a lightweight sitemap plugin that only works on cron over CLI. The solution is very simple and doesn’t support any sort of “on the fly” updates but is extremely performant and meets most SEO teams needs.

    https://github.com/10up/10up-sitemaps

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    • Thierry Muller

      Thanks for sharing Taylor.

      I took a quick look at the code and it seems that 10up sitemaps cache all urls in the options table correct? I am curious to hear how it performs with X million posts.

      In the current version of the MVP featured plugin, we only rely on cron to get the lastmod date for index sitemap urls which links to all object sitemaps (should remain a small list even for very large sites).

      I would love for you guys to contribute to the project and continue these discussions in the upcoming WordPress dedicated slack channel which should kick start in ~ 2 weeks,

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      • Claudio P.

        @Thierry Muller When unsure about technical details about performance and caching, what about looking at real world solutions in other plugins like yoast or similar which have millions of active installs and seem to work fine.

        And trying to providing new core features ready for sites with “X million posts” seems to be a nice thing, but the rest of core, especially Gutenberg, won’t be able to handle this anyway, just try Gutenberg with a few hundred categories or tags which a X million posts site probably will have…

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      • Taylor Lovett

        @Thierry – Yes, we cache the generated sitemap data in options. We store about 200 sitemap items in each option. On a front end request, the only database queries are retrieving the relevant options.

        We’d love to offer any help we can. Excited for the upcoming channel :) Thanks for moving this forward in core!

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  6. Chukwuka Solomon

    This is a big welcome development to the WordPress community. This will really help in discovering content easily.

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  7. olami olagist

    This is a very great core feature and it will save us from installing a lots of plugins and i believe that it will keep getting better once it is been released.

    Also your last three paragraphs is my only fear, we will not want the sitemap features to conflict with our existing sitemap plugin and having a feature to on/off it will be the best.

    Thanks a lot for this.

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    • Peter Shaw

      Code is code whether it is in a plugin or core. There is no improvement here, putting this in core makes things worse as you are bloating the codebase for a feature a large percentage (maybe majority) don’t need.

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  8. gerdneumanngerd

    I have been using XML Sitemap & Google News feeds
    https://github.com/RavanH/xml-sitemap-feed for the last 2 years on a WordPress site with WooCommerce plugin without any problems. The maintainer is highly responsive, the code base healthy.

    Not sure why they decided to develop a new plugin instead of integrating one that already exists and has WooCommerce plus XML news support.

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  9. Dovy Paukstys

    This should have been built-in about 5 years ago. I am SO happy about Google’s involvement. I have confidence it will be done correctly.

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  10. Peter Shaw

    This is one of the dumbest ideas ever. There are 10s of very good solutions for this and if someone can’t do the research on this and install one of these plugin then they should not be using wordpress.

    The absolute tragedy is that there are 5-10 features/api that really need attention in core that could be worked on yet these people are spending many man months making wordpress worse.

    WordPress needs to be slimmed don’t not bloated up with things that belong in plugins. A massive fail and shame.

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    • kris

      I would politely disagree,

      I’d rather have more features built in – with an option to turn them off

      Plugins are useful but NOT always created up to good coding standards, and often neglected or abandoned, and quite often premium versions give you most useful functionality.

      sitemaps /caching / lazy image loading / upload image optimisation / basic contact form – should be IMHO built in

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      • Friedrich Caspor

        sitemaps /caching / lazy image loading / upload image optimisation / basic contact form – should be IMHO built in

        Shhhhh, all those features built in would hurt marketshare of very important plugins like Jetpack https://jetpack.com/support/features/ and their upselling plans and also the wordpress.com account leads from Jetpack would drop like a rock. Also it would be more difficult for Jetpack and wordpress.com to charge extra for SEO etc.

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  11. Isabel

    What about sites with a manually-created sitemap.xml? Not a plugin, but just a simple sitemap.xml file. Will it be overwritten? Appended?

    “This is a question which we haven’t quite solved,”

    I hope that when the feature plugin goes live in the WordPress plugin directory, that its description would mention what it does in this case (the case of manually-created existing sitemap.xml files without a plugin).

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    • Pascal Birchler

      In WordPress, the rewrite rules prefer static files over dynamic routes, so if there is an existing actual sitemap.xml in your web root, this will be served to visitors and WordPress is not even involved in the process.

      Good idea to mention this in the documentation!

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  12. Guido

    I’m an average WP user, don’t really care about SEO or sitemaps. I think this should stay plugin territory. So if you need a sitemap, install a plugin.

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