XML sitemap creation with hreflang

Could a lack of hreflang in your XML sitemap be damaging your international SEO efforts?

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Ensure your website is geo-targeted correctly

If your website is available in different languages/countries, it is essential that the correct version displays in each geo-target. If the wrong version appears in the search results, it can result in a loss of traffic to your website as users will not think it is relevant to them and will not click on it. Our programming team will work with our geo-targeting strategy team to create an XML sitemap with hreflang="x" annotations for your website to help your geo-targeting efforts. The XML sitemap will be validated it to ensure it's ready for you to submit to the search engines.

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Including hreflang in your XML sitemap can help…

  • 1

    When you have many local websites.

  • 2

    When the incorrect URLs are appearing in local search results.

  • 3

    When you have multiple copies of webpages in the same language.

  • 4

    When you are using machine translation to create multiple copies of your website.

  • 5

    When you are forced to use dot coms and not local domains.

  • 6

    When some of your websites are cannibalising the rankings of other websites that should be holding those top positions.

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Why is it important to include hreflang in your XML sitemap?

If your website is targeting an international audience, you should have separate sections for each target region. One of the biggest difficulties with international SEO is the successful targeting of the correct content to the correct region so that users in a particular region find the website that is aimed at them.

In response to this problem, Google offers a useful solution by supporting rel=”alternate” hreflang=”x” annotations in XML sitemaps. These allow you to tell Google which versions of your content you want to have showing up in the search results for various target regions/languages.

We will create an XML sitemap for your website and will include rel=”alternate” hreflang=”x” annotations to ensure that the correct versions of your content show up in the correct geo-targeted regions.

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How it works

The process begins by completing a briefing questionnaire to help us gain all the necessary information to create the sitemap. You will be asked to supply the following information:

  • a valid list of website URLs you wish to submit in your sitemap, including all the alternate URLs to be mapped
  • optional XML sitemap attributes you wish to include in the sitemap along with their values for all URLs (lastmod, changefreq, priority)
  • the language or country-language codes in ISO standard format for all target regions/languages

This briefing will be visible to all team members involved with creating the sitemap and is the foundation for all our quality checks. If you need help with compiling the required information, we can provide assistance. Please note that depending on the amount of support needed, additional consultancy hours may be required. 

The XML sitemap will be created by one of our XML Programmers who will team up with a Geo-Targeting Strategist who will ensure the correct mapping of the URLs for each country with the correct country/language-country codes. Afterwards, the XML sitemap will be validated to ensure it is ready to submit to the search engines.

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Webcertain Group is passionate about generating business growth for its clients in any part of the world. A team of native speakers of all the world’s major languages works together to achieve client objectives - no one understands working with different cultures and the nuances of language in the globe’s search engines better than the Webcertain multilingual teams. Webcertain operates in 44 languages.

Benefits of working with Webcertain:

International specialist since 1997

Transparency and online portal management

No minimum contract period

No minimum order value

International know-how shared

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XML sitemap creation with hreflang

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