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How to Edit Your XML Sitemap with Adobe Contribute

google spider uses XML sitemap to map the webWhat is an XML Site Map?

Site maps provide an alternative way to navigate your website. There are two types:

  1. User-friendly sitemaps, aimed at humans;
  2. A standard techie site map, called an “XML sitemap”, used by search engine "spiders" to navigate your website quickly.

You can easily check if your site has them:

  • Most pages will usually have a link to the user-friendly one; ours is in the footer on every page, including this one;
  • Your XML site map will have the URL, www.domain-name/sitemap.xml;
    e.g. ours is at www.bluetree.co.uk/sitemap.xml;
  • You'll get a 404 error, page not found, if you don't have one.

Why Have an XML Site Map?

Whilst neither sitemap is obligatory, Google, Bing and the rest encourage us to maintain both:

  • A user-friendly one because some people prefer to navigate websites that way, so it makes the Internet easier to use;
  • An XML sitemap because they help web crawling bots work faster and provide a better, more up-to-date index of the worldwide web's content.

BlueTree Multi-level Site Map

We have a multi-level XML site map. You may not need one like this. We have it because our site has an integrated WordPress blog. We use a WordPress plug-in called, “Google (XML) Sitemaps Generator” to do … Well, that's what it says on the can: it keeps the blog’s XML sitemap up-to-date as we make new posts.

Our sitemap structure:


Our excellent WordPress plug-in updates the blog's site map. We update the rest, mainsitemap.xml, by hand.

Procedure for Updating our XML Sitemap

  1. Connect to the site using Contribute
  2. Choose, or navigate to, yoursite/sitemap.xml
  3. Select “Edit Page Source in External Application”, from the File / Actions menu
    NB: you need to tell Contribute which editor to use; how to do this below
  4. Contribute will display a page that looks like this

Contribute shows you are editing a web page using an external editor

  1. Contribute will open your XML editor, ready to edit the sitemap.
    We use PSPad, a brilliant freeware editor from Jan Fiala in the Czech Republic.
  2. Choose a suitable position in the XML file, and insert the new page’s URL to the sitemap.
    In this example, we’re adding a page to help Conservative organisations find support for their BlueTree-but-not-ours websites. If you’d like to know why we are happy to help a competitor, then follow the link to the new page.
  3. The XML code looks like this:
  4. Save and close the updated file.
  5. Return to Contribute click the Publish button.

How to Connect an XML Editor to Contribute

Go to the Preferences control in Contribute’s Edit menu and follow the steps below.

procedure for adding an external XML editor to Adobe Contribute

  1. Select File Editors from the left-hand box;
  2. Select XML in the Extensions list;
  3. Click the Plus (+) button above the Editors box to add another (assuming yours isn’t there already);
    This will deliver the usual Windows Explorer window, allowing you to find and select your XML editor. If you can’t find it, right click on the link it installed on your desk-top (they usually do) and select Properties. Read its location in the General tab.
  4. Select your editor, (PSPad in our case) in the Editors list and …
  5. Click Make Primary.
  6. All done, click OK.

Too Much Information?

We'll do it for you, if you want.

Call 0117 339 0095, or contact us here.


tech help button on keyboard - istock

All Too Techie?

We maintain and support any website, whether or not we created it.

We work on a monthly retainer or an ad hoc basis.

Send your updates when you want and we'll do the rest, leaving you to get on with more important stuff.

More info here.

Or please call 0117 339 0095, or contact us here, and we will help with your XML site map.


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