What Is A Sitemap And Do I Need It?

July 21, 2012 by  Filed under: SEO 

What is a Sitemap?

Hey, did you know that my website is indexed with Google, that is when I type in yourdomain.xxx on goggles’ search engine; presto my website is there on the 1st page. So I guess everyone can now locate me in a breeze. Damn I am good.

Good for you, well done but… unfortunately I most humbly have to add a “but” to your hard work and burst your bubble. To provide you with a little more knowledge of what needs to be done to have more exposure and success with your rankings, herein is a list of what is needed and how to accomplish creating and submitting your sitemap to the desired search engines.

Use this article as reference guide and if you wish a tutorial about what is a sitemap and how to go about creating and submitting your sitemap to the likes of Bing, Google and Yahoo.

Keep in mind that visitors come to your website seeking information. If that information is not available, then there is no reason to stay on your website and most likely the visitor would proceed to another site or just click the back button.

Sitemaps help the visitor understand structure and easily allows for the choice of the page the visitor wants to go to. It is also important for “robotic” visitors from search engines. Since a site map links to all internal pages from one page, it is a reliable tool to submit to search engines.

Personally, although it cannot be verified, submission of the site map to a search engine may assist in getting all web pages indexed quickly by the search engine.

OK let’s get down to the actual work of the sitemap – in my own opinion, too much of talk is boring and of no real value unless it shows the actual work done hands on.

Create your HTML sitemap and save it as sitemap.html or any relevant extension that your website is created in e.g. php

Use a Sitemap Generator which is the easiest, However if you are an advance website designer you can opt to do this yourself. For the novices out there like I, go to http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/

Get it done in 4 Simple Steps:

(a) Enter your full website URL and some optional parameters in the form below

(b) Change the frequency to at least weekly

(c) Last modification leave it as “Use Server’s Response”

(d) Leave the Priority checked at “Automatically Calculated Priority”

And click on the “Start” button.

Be patient, let it do its magic and when once done it, you will be taken to the next page “Your Sitemap is ready”. Here you have the option to download the created sitemap which is best suited for you as such as:

Download Sitemap

Initial website address


Download un-compressed XML Sitemap

sitemap.xml (Kb)

Download compressed XML Sitemap

sitemap.xml.gz (Kb)

Download HTML Sitemap

sitemap.html (Kb) [view]

Download Sitemap in Text Format

urllist.txt (Kb)

Download ROR Sitemap

ror.xml (Kb)

You may also get your generated sitemap emailed to you.

Once you have downloaded the sitemap as per your requirement, you will need to submit to the site engine. To accomplish this create an account or sign in to your relevant Webmasters tools

Google webmaster via https://accounts.Google.com/ServiceLogin?

You may have to verify your website first in order to gain access prior to submitting your sitemap. Once verified and confirmed, submit your website and in most cases you can test your sitemap.

If all goes well according to plan as defined above, CONGRATULATIONS! Your sitemap is now submitted and will be indexed in a short time with the search engine of choice.

Take note that Google has its own webmaster tools while Bing has its own and is combined with Yahoo, so that makes it easier thus submitting to Bing will automatically be indexed with Yahoo as well.

You can also keep track and view how your website is performing, the number of visitors etc via your webmaster tools and also manage other verified users to your webmaster/website account.

I hope that the contents of this article are sufficient as a guide to the description and function of a sitemap and the method of submitting your sitemap to your relevant search engine.

Email me at jmsroa88@gmail.com for assistance and I will do my best for you.

James Roa

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