Technology is making life easier, better and enjoyable. Owning a website is nolonger a reserve of the few with technological know-how. In fact, anyone who can use a MS word can now own and even manage a website without any support from the tech-savvy fellows. This is the good news, but here is the bad. Because everyone can create and own a site, there are currently far too many websites in the world; in fact, a billion to be precise as at October 2014. Most of these websites are very active, and fall under common niches. Large numbers are synonymous with competition, and in this case, all sites are competing for search engines’ attention. If you have the content online, it has to be found by the search engines so that it can be availed to web users.
Well, with a billion websites all struggling to be indexed, it only means that only the best will survive to make it to the search engines results pages. This shouldn’t however be the case because all sites can be crawled, indexed and ranked. It is easier for search engines crawlers to revisit a website that has been crawled before and content indexed than new websites. In the past, they would follow back-links to find fresh information. However, not all sites have external links pointing back to them. This problem was fixed in 2005 when Google launched sitemaps. Seeing its success, other search engines like Yahoo, MSN, Bing adopted and all of them jointly endorsed sitemaps. Today, anyone can create sitemap. This can be done manually or using an automatic sitemap maker.
People are generous with information. In fact, you can find any data you need about anything in the world today. Some sites may have similar information, but the search engines will only bring up the content that is considered the best. When you create a new website or modify the content of an old website, it is advisable to alert search engines of such developments. When you create sitemap, the search engines will follow the URLs to discover and index the new content. Some websites have tons of content, making it difficult to find some of the information from their home page. Using the “search” button may not be helpful either, but it is made possible with the help of a sitemap. A sitemap therefore informs search engines about new content availability so that the same information may be passed to the users searching for it.
Generally, there are two major sitemap types; HTML and XML sitemaps. Both can be created using a sitemap creator but target different audiences. HTML sitemaps are meant for use by website users, enabling them to navigate a site with ease while XML sitemaps are designed to help search engines find fresh information on a site. It has been known that web surfers are an impatient lot. Therefore, they will not hesitate to check out other websites if the information they are interested in cannot be found. With sitemaps, they can always be guided because they serve as a site’s table of content.
Waiting for your website to be indexed can be frustrating. Use a website mapping tool to create your sitemap and speed up the process to save you time and effort.
Create, edit, customize, and share visual sitemaps integrated with Google Analytics for easy discovery, planning, and collaboration.