If you manage your company’s website or online presence, there is a chance you have heard of XML sitemaps. XML sitemaps have a few purposes and can greatly benefit your SEO efforts. We wanted to write a blog on the importance of this feature within Google Search Console and why they impact how you rank!
What is an XML Sitemap?
Simply put, a sitemap is a file that lists all the URL’s that are within a website. The XML portion of the term refers to the type of file it is. Those who manage websites can create and submit this sitemap to search engines directly in order to allow search engines to crawl all the URL’s on the site. While Google and Bing do a great job of this already, they can skip over important URL’s. Submitting a sitemap ensures these search engines don’t miss any pages users may be looking for!
What do Search Engines look for when crawling?
A search engine’s true goal is to provide users with the best and most relevant user experience possible. As search engines crawl and index these submitted URL’s, they look for things like when it was last updated, how often said pages change and how your site is interconnected. Google and other search engines have found out through years of tracking user behavior that sites that are interconnected through links tend to lead to a better user experience. This is why internal linking is an SEO best practice as it promotes users to stay on your site and learn more about what you have to offer. Submitting a sitemap is the best way to ensure search engines take the edits made with SEO in mind, into account.
Creating a Sitemap
If you are managing your site through a CMS or Content Management System, there is most likely a feature or plug-in you can use to create this sitemap. The process behind creating one of these may vary depending on how your site was initially set up. The SEO experts here at Boston Web Marketing can help in the creation and submitting of your sitemap.
How and when to submit your Sitemap?
One can submit a sitemap through Google or Bing’s Search Console. If you don’t have your site verified within Google Search Console, read about how to in this blog! If all versions of your site are verified, Search Console has a separate tab dedicated to submitting sitemaps. Simply add in the sitemap URL (Generally SiteName.com/sitemap.xml) and the search engines will begin crawling your site.
Boston Web Marketing: A trusted SEO Partner
If you have questions regarding how sitemaps work, their importance within SEO, or any of the services we offer here at Boston Web Marketing, give us a call today! Our team of SEO and web marketing experts will seek to understand your business, where you stand in terms of your online presence and create a plan proven to bring results!