What is a Dynamically Generated Sitemap and Why is it Better to Use?

Be default, All in One SEO has always dynamically generated sitemaps rather than output them as a file on your web server.

Dynamically generated just means that instead of a physical file being created on the server, the content is displayed in the browser when someone goes to the URL.

This is very common when working with Content Management Systems such as WordPress. Every page of content that WordPress outputs is dynamically generated from content in the WordPress database. This is inherently better than creating static web page files like web developers used to 20 years ago.

There are four reasons why we do this, these are:

  1. Dynamically generating a sitemap means it’s created every time it is requested meaning it’s always up to date and accurately reflects the state of your site at that moment in time
  2. Dynamically generating a sitemap is usually faster and requires less resources than writing to a static file. Search engines care about how long it takes to access your sitemap, so using a dynamically generated sitemap is much better and avoids them giving up when it takes too long to read
  3. A static file can be overwritten or deleted, or become corrupt or inaccessible due to server permissions issues. A dynamically generated sitemap doesn’t have these problems
  4. Writing to a static file is a complicated process, it requires a lot of code to accommodate different server configurations and can be prone to bugs and conflicts. Generating a dynamic sitemap is a natural part of how WordPress works so is more reliable.

How to Check if My Sitemap is Dynamically Generated

If you want to check whether your XML Sitemap is dynamically generated, go to All in One SEO » Sitemaps » Advanced Settings.

Dynamically Generate should be set to Yes. If it’s not, then you should consider changing this option to take advantage of the benefits of a dynamic XML Sitemap.

If you want to check whether your Video Sitemap is dynamically generated, go to All in One SEO » Sitemaps » Video Sitemap » Advanced Settings.

Dynamically Generate should be set to Yes. If it’s not, then you should consider changing this option to take advantage of the benefits of a dynamic Video Sitemap.

By default, All in One SEO Pack has always dynamically generated the XML Sitemap and Video Sitemap rather than outputting them to a file on the web server.

A dynamically generated file is very common when working with a Content Management System and every page of content that WordPress outputs is dynamically generated from content in the WordPress database.  This is inherently better than creating static web page files like web developers used to 20 years ago.

There are four reasons why we do this, these are:

  1. The dynamically generated XML Sitemap is created every time it is requested.  This means it’s always up to date and accurately reflects the state of your site at that moment in time.
  2. A dynamically generated file is usually faster to access than a static file.  Search engines care about how long it takes to access your XML Sitemap so using a dynamically generated file is better for this reason.
  3. A static file can be overwritten, become corrupt or inaccessible due to server permissions issues.  A dynamic files cannot be overwritten, become corrupt of be inaccessible due to server permissions.
  4. Writing to a static file is a complicated process, it requires a lot of code to accommodate different server configurations and can be prone to bugs and conflicts.  Generating a dynamic file is a natural part of how WordPress works so is more reliable.

If you want to check whether you are using a dynamic XML Sitemap or a static XML Sitemap, go to All in One SEO > XML Sitemap > Dynamically Generate Sitemap.  If this is checked then you have a dynamic XML Sitemap.  If it is not, then you have static file and should consider changing this option to take advantage of the benefits of a dynamic XML Sitemap.

If you want to check whether you are using a dynamic Video Sitemap or a static Video Sitemap, go to All in One SEO > Video Sitemap > Dynamically Generate Sitemap.  If this is checked then you have a dynamic Video Sitemap.  If it is not, then you have static file and should consider changing this option to take advantage of the benefits of a dynamic Video Sitemap.