Jul 15, 2015

How to create a Sitemap?


How to Create a Sitemap?

How to create a sitemap and let Google know where you're at from.

A sitemap is like a road map, except, you know, for sites not roads. It tells Google where it should go, so it can crawl your site more quickly and get more of your great content into the search results. Having a sitemap is great for SEO and it’s often great for users. But how to go about creating one? Luckily, it’s quite easy.

There are two types of sitemaps, HTML and XML.

If you’re trying to earn money from your website, take a few minutes to create and submit your sitemap today.

Build Your Own Site Map:

Start a new document in a text editor. The editor should be a plain text editor, such as Notepad on Windows or TextEdit on Mac. This method is best suited for small sites, as you will be manually entering in each page.

Create your sitemap template. Paste the following into your text document. Basic sitemaps are XML files that are submitted to search engines in order for them to be able to read your site easier. By using this format, you can quickly list all of the pages on your site:
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9">
 <url>
<loc>http://www.YOUR SITE/</loc>
</url>
<url>
<loc>http://www.YOUR SITE/page1</loc>
<lastmod>YYYY-MM-DD</lastmod>
<changefreq>always/hourly/daily/weekly/monthly/yearly/never</changefreq>
<priority>1.0</priority>
</url>
<url>
<loc>http://www.YOUR SITE/page2</loc>
</url>
<url>
<loc>http://www.YOUR SITE/page3</loc>
</url>
 </urlset>
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Replace the example <loc> with your URLs. Visit your site in a browser and go through each link, copying the URLs from your browser’s address bar and pasting them into the template. If you have more pages than space in the template, simply copy a “<url>” section to the bottom as many times as you need.

Use the optional tags. In the first entry of the example, you will see several tags that can be added to each URL, these are optional but may make crawling your page easier for the bots.

1. The <lastmod> tag is the date that your page was last modified.
2. The <changefreq> tag shows about how often your page is updated. Always means that it is updated every time a user views it, while Never means that it is archived.
3. The <priority> tag allows you to rank the importance of each page on your site in relation to the other pages. This value can range from 0.0 to 1.0. The default priority for all pages is 0.5.

Save the file as an XML file. Click File and select Save As. Use the “Save as type” menu and select All Files. Change the file extension from “.txt” to “.xml” and save the file as “sitemap.xml”.

Upload the sitemap to your server. Once your sitemap file is complete, you need to place it in the root folder of your web server. This is the lowest directory on your web server. The final URL for your sitemap should be www.YOUR SITE/sitemap.xml

Submit your sitemap to the search engines. All of the major search engines allow webmasters to submit the URL for the file to their web crawlers. Log into the Webmaster Tools for the search engine that you want to submit to and navigate to the Sitemap section. Paste the URL for your sitemap into the field.

Using a Sitemap Generator:

Browse the available services. There are a variety of sitemap generators available, both free and paid. You can use online services. Server-side tools, or downloaded programs to generate your sitemaps. Free services typically have a 500-1000 page limit.
1. InSpyder
2. SiteCrawler
3. XML-Sitemaps
4. Free sitemap generator.com
5. G-Mapper

Check if your CMS (Content Management System) has a sitemap creation program. Many CMSs such as WordPress have sitemap generators that can be accessed by logging in to your Dashboard. These are often preferable to using a third-part program because they are more suited for the content on your site.

Choose an alternative sitemap. Beyond standard XML sitemaps, there are alternative sitemaps for specific types of sites. If you are building a sitemap for Mobile, Image, News, or Video sites, Google supports specialized sitemaps for those kinds of sites. If you need to build a specialized sitemap, check that the program you are using supports those formats.

Submit your sitemap. All of the major search engines allow webmasters to submit the URL for the file to their web crawlers. Log into the Webmaster Tools for the search engine that you want to submit to and navigate to the Sitemap section. Paste the URL for your sitemap into the field.

HTML:

An HTML sitemap is really just a list of links. If your site doesn't have lots of rich media (videos, images etc) and is smaller (ie, has a relatively simple structure and doesn’t have lots of categories) this would be the way to go. If you do still want to create an HTML one, this sitemap generator creates HTML sitemaps automatically and quickly.

XML:

An XML site map isn’t visible to users, but they’re better if you have a large site. This is because you can create sitemaps within sitemaps. (Eg, in your main sitemap you can link to other sitemaps that map out a sub-category of your site). There are a number of free and paid tools available. I‘ve used XML-Sitemaps and like it.

You can also add a reference to your sitemap in your robots.txt file. Simply add the line Sitemap: http://www.YOUR SITE/sitemap.xml to the file.

It’s the work of a couple of minutes. And, as sitemaps have been considered best practice SEO for a number of years, there’s officially no excuse.



0 comments:

Post a Comment