Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Tip #11: Add a SiteMap to the Google Webmaster Tool for Blogger blogs using Feedburner

This tip is for people who use Feedburner to burn their feeds, Blogger to write their blogs, and Google's Webmaster Tool to check up on their blog's health and status in the Google Search engine.


The Setup
It is common for Blogger users to submit their RSS.xml (or atom) file as a Site Map on Google's Webmaster tool. This works just fine, but when you use Feedburner to burn your feed, and you redirect Blogger's feed to point to Feedburner, then this approach stops working as a SiteMap option for the Google Webmaster tool.


The Solution
Step #1: Logon to the Google Webmaster tool and under Sitemaps, delete the existing rss.xml sitemap

Step #2: After it is deleted, select "Add a Sitemap" as usual, and instead of typing rss.xml, you type rss.xml?redirect=false. This allows the Google Webmaster Tool to access your original Blogger feed, before it gets processed by Feedburner.

Step #3: Follow the usual steps and you are done!


The "feeds/posts/default" approach won't work
Please note that some websites and blogs suggest that you use "feeds/posts/default". This won't work because the Google Webmaster Tool wants you to submit a file at the highest directory level. It will not let you enter this. So if you've already tried this and it didn't work, it's not you, it simply doesn't work :) Instead try the redirect=false approach and you will be fine!

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