Jetpack 3.9 Introduces Sitemaps Module

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Jetpack was released version 3.9 of its plugin software, and the upgrade includes a new module that allow users to add sitemaps to their websites.  Sitemaps are important for search engines, and many WordPress sites use a dedicated plugin to create them.  The new sitemaps module in Jpetack will detect if you are already using a sitemap plugin before activating itself.

READ MORE // HOW TO: INSTALL AND ACTIVATE JETPACK

Sitemap Module

Admins who prefer their current sitemap setup can leave the new module deactivated.  Alternatively, you can delete the stand-alone plugin, and use the one built into Jetpack.

The Sitemaps module has no settings to configure. It automatically create the following two sitemaps:

  • A generic sitemap: yoursitename.com/sitemap.xml
  • A news sitemap: yoursitename.com/news-sitemap.xml

Jetpack Sitemap

The generic sitemap is for any website, but the news sitemap is designed specifically for publishers who want to show up in Google News.  If you meet Google’s standards for news sites, you can apply to be a publisher.  Once approved by Google, the search engine will index your site using the News sitemap.  The News sitemap only displays post published in the last 48 hours.

Jetpack also includes filters that let you add more post types to sitemaps.  The Generic sitemap includes posts, pages and custom post types in it, while the News sitemap only includes posts.  Check out Jetpack’s sitemaps documentation for help customizing them.

Social Sharing

Version 3.9 of Jetpack also includes a new social menu, featuring Genericons and a Skype sharing button.  Developers who want to include support for a menu that displays Social Media links can easily use theme support and a template tag to output the menu.

JetPack Social Menu

The Rest

Jetpack 3.9 improved Photon’s compatibility with WordPress 4.4’s custom image sizes and Photon now works seamlessly on HTTPS sites.  There are 18 bug fixes within the update and more than 20 enhancements for WordPRess sites.

Check out the changelog for a full overview.

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