How to create an XML video sitemap
Why creating a video sitemap
To show a video sample in search results, search engines use the following ways:
- present it in a separate list;
- include the video in general search results.
Robots can scan YouTube content as well. Nevertheless, Google recommends adding video materials to a special map which makes scanning faster and significantly enhances its quality:
- a thumbnail image;
- a link to the video file.
In search results, a video can be displayed in two ways.
Basic video appearance
Enhanced video demonstration
How does an XML video sitemap look like
These are the compulsory tags that must be used in a video site map:
- <loc> — shows the location page of the video.
- <video:title> — contains the video's name.
- <video:description> — a description of content limited by two thousand symbols.
- <video:content_loc> or <video:player_loc> — choose one of the variants. This tag provides Googlebot with a direct link to your video or player location.
- <video:video> — video container.
- <video:thumbnail_loc> — a preview or a thumbnail. Check out Google recommendations for thumbnails.
Additional tags help to register the following characteristics:
- total video duration;
- last date of the video availability;
- total view quantity;
- availability for users who apply "Safe Search";
- access limit for selected countries and platform types;
- the price to download or view the video;
- conditions for free or paid subscription;
- a live stream video;
- category and topic.
Creating XML video sitemap
To create a video sitemap, you can also use mRSS which is a version of RSS protocol. Unlike common RSS, mRSS features better flexibility to include video file details. This tool is able to process only the files that are located in the resource itself but not embedded from YouTube. Accordingly, the service is suitable only for certain websites. Some SEO-specialists reckon that a sitemap should not be necessarily used for YouTube videos.
Having created a sitemap, you should add it to Google Search Console in order to speed up the scanning. Mind that Google Sitemap has a limit of 50000 videos and restricts the map size to 50 Mb.
Using plugins for sitemaps
Apart from standard information provided for a video file (name, description, and duration) you can add its rating, category, access parameters, etc.
How to create a video site map? The best way is to use online generators and plugins. To speed up the indexing, you should upload your sitemap in Google Search Console.
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