Imagine for a moment that you are the Google crawler robot, and you are tasked with indexing the internet. I know, you are thinking that this is ridiculous, but play along for a second. Your job is to make a map of the internet so that the average person can find their way around. You suffer because your job is tedious and boring… Then all of a sudden, you have a bright idea! Ask everyone to help you out! So you tell everyone that you will appreciate them if they provide you with a document meant specifically for robots like you to read. This document is to contain a basic index of their website so you don’t have to find all of their pages on your own.
Alright, now that you have seen the sitemap from the view of the Google, do you get why it might be important? For all of you SEO people, you all know how important it is to gain even the smallest amount of appreciation from Google.
Some people speculate that sitemaps will soon be a thing of the past… that may be so, but for now, it is still here, so here is how to get one. (I will be demonstrate on WordPress)
Once you click “Install now” Word press will automatically install the plugin which will then automatically generate a sitemap. To make sure that your sitemap is live, go to “yourwebsite.com/sitemap.xml” This should produce a list of urls associated with your domain.
Now that you have a sitemap, Google will find it in a couple of weeks and appreciate you
If you just can’t wait for Google to see your fancy new sitemap, or are afraid that google might miss it, you can submit it through Google Webmaster Tools.
In webmaster tools, navigate to >Crawl>Sitemaps.
For this specific site, Sitemaps tabs “By me” and “All” Show that while I have not manually submitted a sitemap, Google has found one.
In the box type: sitemap.xml
It is good practice to test the sitemap before submitting it so that Google can let you know right away if there are going to be any problems.
Once you submit it, Google may still take a few days to find it, but now you are sure that they will find it.
At this point, it is time for you to go take a break and sip some lemonade by the pool. 🙂
If you don’t want to have to worry about any of the above, Big Leap can do it all for you.