Why You Need a Sitemap


handwritten SEO flow chart

The Importance of a Sitemap

Why You Need a Sitemap is not really understood, and sometimes considered redundant. When you build a website your sitemap is the framework which links your content together in a structured way. Google looks at the relationship in your site between posts, pages, and content and and determines the semantic value of your site. If you structure your sitemap just for the sake of having one, then you
will probably miss out on the benefits a sitemap can provide.

Your site’s theme

Your site’s theme is how your visitors get the gist of your site within a very short amount of time. Most visitors just want an overview of your site to asses if the content is relevant to them. They want a “big picture” of your site without having to check out each page. This will improve your bounce rate, and lead to a more successful website.

Navigation

A sitemap literally acts as a map of your site. If your visitors browses your site and gets lost between the thousands of pages on your site, they can always refer to your sitemap to see where they are, and navigate through your pages with the utmost ease. This is Why You Need a Sitemap, but a good menu also helps visitors find what they want promptly and efficiently.

Seo

When you create a sitemap, you are actually creating a single page which contains links to every single page on your site. When search engine robots hit this page they will follow the links on the sitemap and naturally every single page of your site gets indexed by search engines! It is also for this purpose that a link to the sitemap has to be placed prominently on the front page of your website.

Organization and relevance

A sitemap enables you to have a complete bird’s eye view of your site structure, and whenever you need to add new content or new sections, you will be able to take the existing hierarchy into consideration just by glancing at the sitemap. As a result, you will have a perfectly organized site with everything sorted according to their relevance.

The best way to create sitemaps is to use a plugin which will create not just one sitemap, but several sitemaps broken down into pages, posts, categories, etc. This way you will be able to keep your website easily accessible and neatly organized for everyone.

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By Joe Conde