Sitemaps. They can be confusing. They can be very large. Should you use a simple sitemap, or a sitemap index? When should you submit your sitemap?
Sitemaps for Knoxville Web Sites are very important. They are the blueprint for your website that Google and other search engines use to index your website correctly. The sitemap is the supreme Hierarchy. Without it, and your site will not rank well. If there are errors, you may not even get ranked at all. But don’t fret about it. If you use a custom site, there are many free websites out there that will generate a XML and HTML version of your sitemap, many like XML Sitemap Generator. If you use a CMS like WordPress, there are many plugins like Yoast that will generate a sitemap for you.
But I have a huge store with over 5,000 products and variations. I have a sitemap for my pages and one for my products, what do I do?
Then you need a Sitemap Index. A Sitemap index allows you to include several Sitemap files under one file called Sitemap index. It uses almost the same syntax but instead of including your pages URLs, you will have to add the URLs to your Sitemaps.
The best way to break that out to many sitemaps is a matter of how your site is structured. Do you have a blog based system with categories and content in each category? Do you have sets of products? Or many locations for your business?
- Simple: Groups of 100 pages per sitemap (or 1000, or 10000, but try to keep it smaller)
- Better: Static Pages (homepage, about, etc.), Products, Blog
- Best: Static, Categories, Subcategories, Locations, Blog by Date, etc.
When is the best time to submit my sitemap to Google? How often do I have to do this?
Different engines act differently. Generally, you can re-submit your web site once per month.
For Spider Engines, if your web site has been indexed already, the search engine’s “Robot” will re-visit your web site at a regular time(normally once or twice per month) and update their database with the changes you have made. You really don’t have to do this if you don’t want, but it is still good practice to keep your sitemap manually updated just in case the Spider Bot didn’t index some of your sitemap. Especially if you have a 50,000 url website.
You can re-submit your web site again if you make any changes to your web site. We suggest that you should always make some minor changes to your web site, so that the search engines will consider your web site are well maintain and it will also help to improving your web ranking.
If your web site isn’t indexed by the search engines, you can re-submit your web site again once per month. We suggest that make some changes to your web site contents before re-submitting.
If you submit your web site too often, you will be considered as “spam” and your web site will be banned by the search engines. Here are some general rules when submitting your web site:
1. Do not submit the SAME URL multiple times in one day.
2. Do not submit more than 5 different URLs under the same domain in one day.
3. If you have many URLs(or pages) under the same domain, please only submit 3 to 5 pages each day.
4. Always make some changes to your web site before re-submitting.
5. Do not re-submit the SAME URL more than once per month.
Need some help? Do you find SEO confusing? It’s okay. We are here to help you grow. If you are interested in marketing on your old site, or you need a fresh modern look, give us a shout at Appleseed Web Design. We are always here to help!