Now that you know the importance of a site map, let us look at how you create a sitemap and submit it to Google.
A sitemap is a great way to build SEO for your website. It ensures that your site is crawled and indexed properly. While some plugins (like Yoast SEO) and online sitemap generators do a fairly good job, they haven’t yet replaced the proficiency of creating a sitemap by hand. They leave too many things to chance, things that can make a difference in how many visitors your site receives.
Creating a sitemap yourself is still the best way to guarantee that Google is getting the information you want it to.
Here are the steps to follow to create your own sitemap:
A sitemap is simply a list of pages that make up your website. The most important thing to remember here is to focus only on the pages that should be in Google’s index. For instance, you don’t need to index a page that is a post-sale “thank you” page. Also, you likely don’t need a login page to be indexed if yours is a membership site.
Review each page and make sure it’s one that you want Google to be sure to find.
The next step is to make a list of the URL’s for each page that you want to be indexed. If there are pages that aren’t part of your menu and they are reached by links in other pages, make sure to include those too. Drill down to each page or post that you want to index. Start with your general menu pages, then drill down your services and/or product pages and your blog posts.
Now that you have your list of URLs, you need to tag them with appropriate tags. For this, you’ll need a text editor so that you can create XML files. Sublime Text is a site that will help you create these tags effortlessly and they offer a lifetime license with purchase.
Save your sitemap as a file, then use a sitemap validator, like Markup Validation Service, to make sure your tags are working correctly. Simply upload your document and let the program run. When it’s done, you should receive a message letting you know your sitemap has been successfully checked.
While it’s not difficult to create and submit a sitemap, it is time-consuming and there is a learning curve involved if you’ve never done something like this before. It may be well worth your time to hire someone with experience to handle this for you.
Submitting your sitemap to Google will ensure that it can find you easier and faster than before, sending more website visitors your way.
If you haven’t done so yet, now is the time to create a sitemap and submit to Google.