Support » Plugin: Yoast SEO » External links to YOAST web – not good

  • Resolved ontario777


    Its not pointed in docs but on the /sitemap_index.xml page there are 2 yoast external links.
    Its not good for SEO but very good for owners of the yoast plugin as incoming link.

    The solution is change the in the file /wp-content/plugins/wordpress-seo/css/main-sitemap.xsl all the lines

    rel=”noopener noreferrer”
    rel=”nofollow noopener noreferrer”

    That’s it!

    BTW those hidden open link is the reason that i left 2* review for this plugin

Viewing 10 replies - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
  • Plugin Support Michael Tina


    Hi @ontario777

    The bots and crawlers look at the XML code and not the stylized version that you see in the browser itself. The XML code should not contain any links to Yoast.

    We hope this helps provide further clarification.

    Thread Starter ontario777


    XML code does not have links.
    But opening /sitemap_index.xml via browser there are 2 links injected by JOAST, so its visible for web crawler.

    However if there is no reason to add links – why Yoast inject it?
    Not fare šŸ™

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by ontario777.
    Plugin Support Suwash Kunwar



    Actually, those two links has rel="noopener noreferrer" meaning that this will prevent any information to be passed to the new tab and the end result is that any traffic that will go from it to the linking website (by clicking the link), will not be shown in Google Analytics. This should not hurt site SEO and ranking.

    In addition, the sitemap file intentionally contains a ‘noindex’ robots meta tag as it is not meant to be indexed and it should not appear on the search results. It has a “noindex, follow” header that lets Google know that the file should not be indexed, but except those two links on it should be followed.

    Thread Starter ontario777


    Actually there should be added rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer" if the reason you place the links is only human traffic.
    If there is no “nofollow” attribute that means that you steal the web page rank from the customer’s web.

    Plugin Support Md Mazedul Islam Khan


    We appreciate your concern about the relevant link. We can confirm the relevant link that we use in the XML sitemap XSL stylesheet doesn’t steal anything. However, if you think that it’s not something that should be on there, please do feel free to submit an issue report directly at our GitHub development repository so our development team can decide on this. We only track issue reports and feature requests on our GitHub development repository. So, that would be the best place to submit your thoughts.

    Thread Starter ontario777


    So what is the reason you inject 2 links there?


    We appreciate the feedback regarding these links! We had a request at one point to remove those links here: However, the links remain in order to provide clarification that Yoast is outputting the code.

    Thread Starter ontario777


    The comments in XML that’s ok, but not the links on the visible sitemap.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by ontario777.
    Plugin Support Priscilla Chapman


    Hi @ontario777,

    We can understand that some users may not want visitors to see which plugin they’re using or visible links in the sitemap even if they’re not seen by search engines. We hope we’ve answered your questions and concerns.

    If you have any other technical issues related to using Yoast SEO, you’re welcome to create a new forum topic.

    Plugin Support devnihil


    We are going ahead and marking this issue as resolved due to inactivity. If you require any further assistance please create a new issue.

Viewing 10 replies - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
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