mlawley

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I have read that Google retired the ability to have a separate geositemap awhile back but still supports KML sitemaps if added to your main sitemap index:

One of the few companies I see talking about this is Yoast when trying to sell their Local SEO plug-in. Almost every other feature on the Local SEO plug-in I can accomplish on my own and I have generated KML sitemaps before so I don't want to pay their per site price (69/year) just for this feature.

Is it worth taking the time to add in a custom generated locations.kml sitemap to the Yoast sitemap index as described here:


Is anyone still using these consistently and seeing value in them? I can't find too much information about them on blogs past 2014.

Thanks,
Matt
 

mlawley

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Nope KML or Keyhole Markup Language.

Yoast describes using this for their Local SEO plug-in here: Local SEO for WordPress plugin

1599679113206.png


I've used their plug-in for the past year but don't want to continue paying for it if I can add this myself. Their plug-in generates an geo-sitemap.xml file and add its to the sitemap index

Sitemap Index


1599678899808.png


Geo-Sitemap

Then the geo-sitemap.xml file references a locations.kml file:


1599678938407.png



Locations.kml

The locations.kml file has NAP information and GPS coordinates, ect. Pretty much a simplified version of what you would put in a local business schema markup nowadays:


1599678989875.png




I think this was mainly used before Google My Business allowed you to submit all your info via the dashboard and before Schema was more prevalent. Google also used to allow you to submit the geositemap file independently but now requires it to be in your main sitemap which is why Yoast has linked so many files together.

But this still does give one more verification of correct NAP and GPS coordinates that you can submit to Google Search Console. So it's hard to tell how much value it has... but I doubt its worth paying $69/year per site for Yoast to do it for you.

Thanks,
Matt
 

freerunr

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Agree with @Rich Owings. I have zero data to back it up, but did similar research to you, @mlawley, several years ago to try to prove to our business that KML's weren't worth our time. They used to even be mentioned in the Local Search Rankings Factors study, but even in this archived one from 2013, they were pretty far down the list: Local Search Ranking Factors 2013 - Local SEO and How to Rank in Google - Moz

Using them probably wouldn't hurt anything, but I don't know of any recent data that proves they help. Someone please chime in if something is out there.
 

mlawley

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@Rich Owings and @freerunr thanks! Yes I am planning on implementing local business schema on the home page of the site as this is what GMB points to. These are really new sites I'm working on so I was trying to see if KML would give some extra a little bit of extra ranking power especially at the beginning...
 
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