tutorial of a sitemap, its importance and how to create it
An indisputable fact for every website owner: that search engine visitors are the most important and best way to get visitors. Therefore, it was an inevitable duty for every website owner, to make his site prepared for the way search engines work, this is what is called in general the science of SEO or search engine optimization , about which we published an integrated guide previously in the winners.
If you want to get good visitors from the Google search engine, you must first ensure that your links are well crawled by Google spiders, and then indexed.
In this article, we will talk about a very important factor, from improving the crawling and indexing of websites, today we will talk about a sitemap.
In this article we will answer these questions:-
- What is a sitemap or sitemap?
- What is the importance of a sitemap for each website?
- What does a sitemap consist of?
- What are the most important tools for making a sitemap?
- How do I make a sitemap for my WordPress site, and the most important plugins to make it work?
- How do I submit a sitemap to Google through Webmaster Tools?
What is a sitemap or sitemap?
A sitemap is a file that is uploaded to your site's server, in the main path of the site's files.
This file is supposed to contain all the links on your site, to help Google spiders and other search engine spiders crawl your site. This file is in the extension or XML format.
This file contains some references to website links, including:
- Indicates the last time a change was made for each web page.
- Indicate the importance of each website link.
This gives search engines a clue to the nature of the site's pages and links. Just as you can create a sitemap for your site pages, you can also create a sitemap for videos and images within your site.
Here something very important must be mentioned. That is, the sitemap or sitemap does not force you to force Google or the rest of the search engines to crawl your site in a certain way, but it is just a guide through which you provide search engines with information about your site links, and it is the right of Google and other search engines to take this guide or not.
But in any case, Google and the rest of the search engines recommend site owners to create a sitemap file, and stress its importance.
What is the importance of a sitemap for each website?
According to Google itself, the sitemap is of particular importance in the following cases:-
- Your site is new, and you want an easy way to make it known to search engines.
- Your site should be large in size, with a large number of internal pages.
- That the pages of your site are not linked together correctly, or that there are certain pages on your site that are not linked to the rest of the pages.
But anyway a sitemap is important for every website, not just in the cases mentioned.
In summary, the importance of Sitemap lies in that it gives a clear, direct and explicit map of Google spiders, and the rest of the search engine spiders, in order to crawl all pages of the site correctly and smarter, in order to archive them.
What does a sitemap consist of?
Any sitemap consists of a very simple code as shown in front of you below.
Above Sitemap in XML: The first and second lines of code are not repeated in the sitemap, this part represents the opening of the file. And the green line indicates the service through which the sitemap was created, then you will find that every link on the site contains almost the same code with the same link changed.
Here's a breakdown of the code that contains the sitemap for each link.
- You will find that any code for any link starts with this little
- Then, in the next line, you will find a code that begins and ends with this
. This line contains the link that this part of the code is talking about.
- In the next line you will find code that starts and ends with this
This is a signal through which the sitemap tells search engines the last time a change or modification was made to this link.
- In the line following the rate of change, you will find another line that starts and ends with this
symbol, which indicates the priority or importance of this link, and this priority is measured from zero to one true, for example, the priority of your site's home page will take a valid one, and perhaps Other pages will be 0.7 or 0.8....etc.
- The code for any link ends as it started with this code
- At the end of the sitemap completely, you will find it also ends as it started, with this symbol.
What are the most important tools for making a sitemap?
There are many sites that offer sitemap creation service, some of which are free and some of which are paid.
Here is a list of the most important services for creating a sitemap file:
- XML-sitemaps (Free tool for up to 500 links)
- Sitemap writer pro (paid program)
- inspyder (a paid program that specializes in creating a sitemap for Google search engines )
- dynomapper (a comprehensive tool for crawling your site, detecting broken links, and creating a sitemap file)
- slickplan (a paid professional tool for creating a sitemap file, it has many other services)
After creating the sitemap file, you must upload it to your server in the main path of the site (public_html).
How do I make a sitemap for my WordPress site?
Creating a sitemap for websites using the WordPress platform is very easy, and often completely free.
Although any of the tools mentioned above can be used on WordPress sites, there are WordPress plugins that are dedicated to creating a sitemap.
The most important of these additions are:-
Google XML Sitemaps
This plugin is trusted by more than 2 million WordPress sites, it is updated regularly to make it better in performance, and it has an excellent rating by its users.
Yoast SEO Yoast is a complete SEO
solution for websites that use WordPress . Among the features offered by Yoast is the creation of a sitemap file.
To activate this feature, go to the seo add-on settings >>>general, then at the top choose the Features tab, then set the XML sitemaps button.
How do I submit a sitemap to Google search engine?
Here you are supposed to have a Google Search Console account , but that's okay since you can create a new Gmail account with Gmail.
After creating the account and activating your site, follow these steps:
- Go to Crawl tab.
- Click on the small arrow next to it.
- A list will drop down for you to choose Sitemaps.
- Click on the add/test sitemaps button at the top right.
- Put the name of the file that you previously uploaded to the hosting, which might be sitemap.xml.
- Then click on the submit button.
- Wait for Google to check and approve the sitemap.
- Each time you log into your Google Webmaster Tools account you will find a report on the sitemap, in terms of the number of links that have been indexed by Google out of the number of links in the sitemap.
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