Websites have a lot going on behind the scenes and something that can be both in the background and front-and-center at the same time is a sitemap.
What is a Sitemap?
Simply put, a site map is a list of pages of a website within a domain. It is a file where you provide information about the pages, videos, and other files on your site. It also tells search engines which pages on a site are important, helping with ranking.
Types of sitemaps:
- An XML sitemap is the most common and usually automatically generated by your CMS or plugins like YoastSEO. XML stands for Extensible Markup Language and these sitemaps are in a textual data format.
- An HTML sitemap is an HTML page on which all subpages of a website are listed. They usually resemble a site’s navigation bar.
- A news sitemap helps search engines to parse and understand news content on your site.
- A video sitemap helps search engines understand your site’s video content.
- An image sitemap assists search engines in finding the images hosted on your website.
Why Do Sitemaps Matter?
- Sitemaps serve as a reference point for identifying relevant internal linking opportunities.
- They’re a ‘pathway’ between your site’s content, which is how Google locates and understands it as a whole.
- Helping you fill any gaps in your site’s content catalog, or identify older pages that need updating.
How Do I Make One?
As mentioned, most website builders and CMS will generate one and even submit your sitemap to the search engine for you. But you may also use plugins, online generators, or build one from scratch. Building one yourself might take some advanced tech know-how.
Wanna learn more about sitemaps and how to use them? Check out the full WebBuilderExperts article.