SEO is a complex and ever changing area but there are some key elements that are still as relevant now as they were a few years ago. One of them is building high-quality XML Sitemaps, a comprehensive and accurate representation of your website. That way, you keep control of what you want search engines to index in order of priority and you inform them of new or updated content on your website.
Because XML Sitemaps are so important, we want to make it very easy for webmasters to generate them and publish them for the use of all search engines. That’s why we are excited to open today the public beta program for the Bing Sitemap Plugin, an open source server-side technology that takes care of generating XML Sitemaps compliant with sitemaps.org for websites running on IIS as well as Apache.
How does it work?
The Bing Sitemap Plugin generates two types of Sitemaps:
1. A comprehensive Sitemap of all URLs seen in server traffic
2. A Sitemap dedicated to store URLs that have changed recently
Having both comprehensive and delta Sitemaps provides you with significant benefits, as you will always have a full, up-to-date list of all URLs on your website that search engines can use for deep crawl, as well as a concise Sitemap of URLs that were modified recently, which search engine crawlers can prioritize. This can help in keeping bot traffic bandwidth down. In addition, the Sitemap Plugin automatically adds <lastmod> values to your Sitemap, and generates <priority> values to the Sitemap based on how popular your URLs are.
You can find more information about the Bing Sitemap Plugin in our Bing Webmaster help center.
If you want to jump in and go directly to the plugin download page, binaries for IIS (x64 and x86) and Apache (Linux) as well as the sources for both are available in the Microsoft download center.
We also welcome your feedback, suggestions and feature requests in the Bing Webmaster forums.