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Sitemap compatibility guidelines

Affilimate uses your sitemap to efficiently crawl your website for affiliate links.

Standard sitemaps created by plugins like Yoast, RankMath, and so forth are supported out of the box. As are custom sitemaps generated by any popular website builder.

Here are a few key points to ensure your Sitemap contains the information we need.

Here's how to make sure Affilimate can:

Read your sitemap (Format requirements)

Here's an example of a properly formatted sitemap:

<urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9" xmlns:xhtml="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">
  <url>
    <loc>https://yourwebsite.com/path-to-a-page/</loc>
    <lastmod>2021-09-07T19:52:02+02:00</lastmod>
  </url>
</urlset>

At a minimum, it must contain:

  • <loc>: The URL location of a page on your site
  • <lastmod>: The timestamp for when that page was last updated

For each page on your site you want to track.

Affilimate will use both of these fields to scan your website for affiliate links, build your heatmaps, and monitor for revisions.

Your sitemap may contain other sitemaps, which will then fetch and parse to discover all the pages on your website.

You should avoid redirects and 404 pages inside your sitemap. If we encounter one of these while scanning your site, you may see an error for that individual page.

Now that your sitemap is formatted properly, here's how to make sure Affilimate can discover it.

Find your sitemap (Discovery requirements)

Affilimate has two modes for sitemap discovery:

  1. Auto-detect
  2. Custom

Affilimate auto-detect your sitemap in the following, standard locations:

  • yourwebsite.com/sitemap.xml
  • yourwebsite.com/sitemap_index.xml
  • yourwebsite.com/robots.txt when a sitemap URL is specified

If your sitemap is available at a non-standard location, please provide a custom sitemap URL.

Track part of a large website (Gradual onboarding)

Want to start by only scanning, tracking, and attribution affiliate revenue on a section of a large website? Here's how:

  1. Use the instructions above for Custom sitemaps to provide the URLs and lastmods of pages you want to track
    • You will need to prepare this sitemap on your own, potentially with the help of a developer.
  2. Install the Affilimate tracking snippet only on pages inside the sub-sitemap
    • You can do this in many ways, such as rendering the JavaScript snippet conditionally based on the Permalink of the page.
    • Or, whether the post is part of a specific category on your website.
    • Again, you will probably need a developer's help to accomplish this.

Pageviews are counted towards your limit for any visit to a page where there are:

  • Affiliate links you've imported for tracking and
  • You've installed the tracking snippet.

Pageviews will still be counted if those pages aren't part of the sub-sitemap you've established for tracking.

Therefore, please be sure to only render the Tracking Snippet on pages you wish to track as part of your subsite and whose pageviews should count towards your subscription plan.

Note: When you set up your network integrations, we'll still pull revenue from the entire account even if you are tracking a subset of the website. 

Have questions? Contact us at support@affilimate.com anytime.

Last Updated 2/27/2022

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