What’s a Sitemap For? How Do You make One?

Learn How to Make an XML Sitemap

If you’re interested in creating your own website, one of the problems you may run into is creating a sitemap. So, what is it and how does it work? Essentially, a sitemap is a tool that allows search engines and visitors to look up pages within a website. It’s a navigational tool that plainly lists all of the pages available on any given website. These lists are arranged in predominance, in a hierarchical fashion, and give indexing information for search engine bots. Search engine bots “crawl” on websites and send indexing information to search engines such as Google and Yahoo. Therefore, sitemaps assist search bots with crawling and indexing your your website more thoroughly.

 

Simply, sitemaps are XML files that document URLs for websites along with data, such as update history, the frequency of changes, and how important the given page is in relation to other URLs within the website. All of this information is taken and categorized, allowing for search engines to be more efficient, and allow search bots to deliver the best information for their searches.

google xml sitemap

NOT a Google xml sitemap

 

 

It should be noted, however, that even though sitemaps allow for websites to be picked up by crawlers, it does not guarantee that web pages will be included with search engine searches. But, sitemaps do allow bots to do a better job at information grabbing, and in turn, boosts your website’s chance of a better page ranking.

 

Now that you have an idea of what a sitemap is, you’re probably wondering how to make one.




Thankfully, there are many options available to create one, either manually or through a generator. For inexperienced webmasters, a generator program would probably be the best option, seeing as manually imputing code could be tricky. If you would like to manually create an XML sitemap, there are manuals, tutorials, and guides that could help you create one. But for the more cautious webmaster, here are a couple of options that could aid you in creating a sitemap.

1. SitemapDoc offers an XML sitemap generator and editor by simply entering your website’s URL.

2. AuditMyPC.com has a free sitemap generator and provides many other resources for the creation of sitemaps.

3. Google XML Sitemaps Generator offers an easy way for webmasters to include sitemaps into their existing websites. Google installs a tool into your web server and automatically generates a sitemap for your website.

4. XML-Sitemaps.com has a 4 step process for generating a sitemap online. And with purchase of an upgrade, this program can have unlimited use.

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