Submitting an XML sitemap to Google Search Console, is key to allowing users to find your business and learn about your services to maximize your conversion rates. By uploading your sitemap, Google is able to read the content included on each of your webpages and rank it for relevant search results pages. Without this essential step, Google is unable to identify or locate your webpages the content they include and your website will be untraceable through organic search. The entire process of uploading a sitemap is quite simple and can be done in just a few minutes using the proper tools. For a step-by-step guide, read on below, or contact Boston Web Marketing for professional website design services.
What Is a Sitemap?
By definition, a sitemap is a domain file that includes a complete list of all webpages and the content, metadata, and information found within each. Generally, sitemaps are known as the “road map” for any given website that guides the user to find the pages or information they are looking for. Most sitemaps can be categorized into two types: XML and HTML. When performing an upload to Google, Bing, Yahoo, or any other search engine, you will need to work with XML format.
Step One: Verify Your Website in Google Search Console
Before you can upload your XML sitemap to Google, you first need to verify your business in Google Search Console. In the world of SEO, Google Search Console acts as the intermediary between Google and your website for communication. Here, you can find the details for any errors that occur with your website and submit requests for revision. By submitting your XML sitemap to Google Search Console, Google is able to identify and analyze each page’s content to include in a relevant search results page. For more information about Google Search Console and how it can help with optimizing your website, read our blog.
Step Two: Locate Your Website’s XML Sitemap
Next, you want to locate the XML sitemap file for the website you would like to submit to Google. If you have created your website using WordPress, this file can be simple to generate using the All-In-One SEO plug-in. If you are unsure how to locate this information, visit our website for an inclusive guide on creating an XML sitemap. Another simple method for finding your business’s sitemap is by including “/sitemap.xml” at the end of the URL in the search bar located at the top of the browser.
Step Three: Navigate the Sidebar to Find the ‘Sitemaps’ Menu
After retrieving the XML sitemap for your business’s website, toggle back to the Google Search Console window. From here, you want to navigate the sidebar on the left of your screen until you find the option reading ‘Sitemaps.’ Generally, this menu option can be found under the main heading “Index,” and is found between ‘Coverage’ and ‘Removals.’
Step Four: Copy & Paste Your XML Sitemap to Submit
Once you have located your XML sitemap and are currently viewing the ‘Sitemaps’ menu in Google Search Console, it is now time to upload your file. This can be done by simply pasting the sitemap URL into the designated textbox and pressing the ‘enter’ key on your computer. It is important to note that during this step, you only need to paste the end of the URL that includes the sitemap information, not the entire address.
Step Five: Confirm Google Verification
Now that your website’s XML sitemap is uploaded, the only step left is to confirm Google verification. Before leaving the page and completing your submission, you want to make sure that Google has successfully received and read your file. Patience is key, as this can take up to several minutes depending on the size of your website. Once you have received verification from Google, your XML sitemap is officially submitted and ready for use.
Importance of Keeping Your Website Index-Up to-Date
After initial submission, it is crucial to continue to monitor and update the pages you have indexed in Google Search Console with the most current information. If you perform any dramatic changes to your website, such as removing pages or changing any metadata, it is always a good idea to update your sitemap. By doing so, you can avoid any potential redirects or website errors.
Contact Us for More Information on Sitemap Building & Submission in Boston, MA
By submitting your XML sitemap to Google Search Console, the webpages for your business are able to become visible on a search engine results page and increase in ranking for optimization. Boston Web Marketing offers expert SEO services, including sitemap creation and submission for those looking for further assistance in the Greater Boston area. For more information about how we can help boost the ranking of your business’s website, call us today at (857) 526-0096, or fill out our contact form.