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Should I submit sitemaps of both http and https version of website?

     
9:42 am on Nov 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Hi,

I have migrated my site from HTTP to HTTPS. I am mainly confused about sitemap submission in the property within Google Search Console. There are 3 options that I have and there are 3 different opinions, 2 from Google Employees and 1 from a moderator at WebmasterWorld, so I am confused, which option should be preferred.

For simplification,

HTTP Sitemap - includes all urls with http://
HTTPS Sitemap - includes all urls with https://

Option 1) Submit both HTTP sitemap as well as HTTPS sitemap within the new HTTPS property created in Google Search Console. This will lead to one existing HTTP sitemap within the HTTP property and another two within the HTTPS property.

Quoted from:
https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!topic/webmasters/9uXVsQ18WQk
Copy link ^^^ into address bar
(Google Employee says)

Submit both old and new sitemaps on the HTTPS profile in your Google Search Console.


Option 2) Submit HTTPS sitemap within the new HTTPS property. Keep the HTTP sitemap within HTTP property intact.

Quoted from [plus.google.com...]
(Google Employee says)

Use 301 redirects from HTTP to HTTPS, confirm the new version by adding a rel=canonical on the HTTPS page, pointing to itself, and submit sitemaps including both HTTP & HTTPS URLs with new change-dates (in the long run, just keep the HTTPS sitemap).


3) Submit HTTPS sitemap within the new HTTPS property. Remove/Delete the HTTP sitemap from within the HTTP property.

Quoted from [webmasterworld.com...]

msg#4852808
@DChan - I can see the confusion when someone at a Google discussion says...
submit sitemaps including both HTTP & HTTPS URLs with new change-dates (in the long run, just keep the HTTPS sitemap)
IMO this is not only bad advice, but serves no purpose. The 301 will take everyone, including Googlebot, to the HTTPS sitemap.xml. Having 2 conflicting records is not a good thing. Just let Googlebot crawl the new links and be done with it.


I look forward to receiving inputs on the same. Currently, I have added HTTPS sitemap within HTTPS property and retained the HTTP sitemap within HTTP property.


Mod's note: Hashtags in urls break in WebmasterWorld redirect script. Copy and paste Google product forum url into browser address bar.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 10:46 am (utc) on Nov 10, 2017]
[edit reason] Google product forum link [/edit]

11:10 am on Nov 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I don't see what use the http sitemap would be, but neither do I see harm.

Of the three options, the first makes the least sense, and could conceivably lead to unforeseeable negative impacts.

The other two are equivalent in the medium term- no sitemap in http. At least by submitting one (per option 2), Google will find all your 301s efficiently.

Once all URLs are requested, you can remove the map.
11:28 am on Nov 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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No, use the HTTPS sitemap only.

All your documents should be HTTPS. There should be no access to non-secure content. That's the whole point.

Just leave your old HTTP property with the old HTTP sitemap. You won't use it any longer, but no need to remove it. That property will start to loose data over the next several weeks.

Create a new HTTPS property where you will submit the new HTTPS sitemap.xml. Data will start to appear in a day or two. This will be the only relevant property that you will keep watch of.
11:45 am on Nov 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@keyplyr
So in GSC, would you not submit anything on the registered http property, or submit the (syntactically incorrect) https sitemap?

... Nevermind, you edited while I typed, and clarified your position.

I disagree (as an opinion, not a repudiation) that you should leave the old one. Better to resubmit to refresh the submission date, prompting a re-crawl and efficient discovery of the 301s.
12:36 pm on Nov 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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No need to remove the old HTTP property. Google has as much said so. This data will not be used any longer. Leave it for archive and reference purposes, that's all.

...resubmit to refresh the submission date, prompting a re-crawl and efficient discovery of the 301s
Yes, that's what I'm saying. Create a new HTTPS property and submit the new HTTPS sitemap. That's the only version of your site that will be used going forward.
5:51 am on Nov 11, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I have personally abandoned all my http references and redirected everything, including the HTTP sitemap to its HTTPS version. My site is no longer accessible in HTTP. I have seen no negative impact. But not many of my current users rely much on outdated older browsers, so that might be an area of consideration. I did keep my http versions on webmaster tools, but they became obsolete after the ranking data time frame elapses what is available. I also do not submit nor use anything for the HTTP version of it.

During the initial stage it might help to see the cross reference of how HTTP index drops while the HTTPS gains, when I first migrate to HTTPS that's how I made sure everything was going smoothly.
10:00 am on Nov 13, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Thanks a lot for your responses. I will go with option 2.
11:51 am on Nov 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Suggest keeping only one version of URL, preferrable HTTPS website.

The best way is to 301 redirect HTTP to HTTPS and verify HTTPS URL in search console. And submit the sitemap. Not too much complications.
7:25 pm on Nov 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Hello neenaac and welcome to WebmasterWorld [webmasterworld.com]

The topic is "sitemaps" not whether to keep more than one version of a website.