Front Range Blogger Meetup Message Board › What's a Sitemap, and do I need it?

What's a Sitemap, and do I need it?

Christian T.
user 8530912
Denver, CO
Post #: 4
I'm trying so hard to read everything I can on blogging and how to promote my film site (whatwouldtotowatch.com)

One thing I just came across is sitemaps. According to Google Webmaster Tools i don't have one, and i have a feeling it's important.

But after scouring the web for help I feel more confused than ever. Can anyone in the group help me create one (I'm guessing it's not a hard process)? Or, perhaps they can steer me to concise info that can help?

Is this important, or should I not waste time getting a sitemap in the first place?

I appreciate any help you can offer! And, if you need anything proof read please let me know. I'm a freelance journalist and would be glad to help.
Corrinda C.
Corrinda
Denver, CO
Post #: 17
Hi Christian-

There are two types of sitemaps one that resides on your website and is a page that shows a list all of your web pages and how they are linked. It looks a little like a flow chart and is another way visitors can get to the content they are looking for.

This isn't a requirement and it depends on your website and your visitors on whether you need include this page. They are not as widely used as they used to be. Search engines have gotten more precise and they now use the second type of sitemap discussed below.

Some WordPress themes have this page template built in. This is a plugin I found in the WP.org repository that will help build this sort of page. Note I have not used the plugin or read a review but it is up to date.

http://wordpress.org/...­

The other type of sitemap contains the same information but it is stored in a type of file type called an xml file. While it can be viewed using a web browser this type of sitemap is used by the search engines. I would say this type of sitemap is a "must have" for your website.

This plugin is the most widely used for this purpose and I have installed in on every site I've built over the last three years:

http://wordpress.org/...­

The ideal is to not only have this file available for the search engines but to also submit it as well. At Google you can create a Webmaster Tools account that allows you to submit the sitemap xml file and keep track of what the search engines are seeing as they crawl and index your site.

I hope that helps answer your question.

Corrinda Campbell
Small Business WordPress Services
(303) 249-4615

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