Sitemap in the website is an XML file known as sitemap.xml. This file contains the structure of the website, pages, blog posts. It means that sitemap.xml is used to display content and pages under the domain. It helps readers to navigate or visit different pages on the website and it helps search engines to index the website and collect information and data systematically.
When a website is systematically structured and information or pages are submitted correctly to search engines that it improves the SEO of the website.
You can create sitemap.xml by using an online sitemap generator. And if you’re using WordPress then you can use the Yoast SEO plugin.
Where sitemap.xml file is located or exists or placed?
If you’re creating a sitemap.xml file manually then you can upload the sitemap.xml file in the public HTML folder and you will find it in your hosting Cpanel file manager.
If you’re using WordPress then the sitemap.xml file is automatically generated by SEO plugins. For example, you can find your sitemap.xml file in the Yoast SEO plugin – General -> Features. Click on the XML sitemap? then you can see the file. Make sure you enable it.
Test your sitemap.xml before you submit it for indexing. Make sure that you can see it like this in URL bar “yourdomain.com/sitemap.xml
Where to submit the sitemap.xml file?
For proper indexing of your website in Search Engine, you have to submit “yourdomain.com/sitemap.xml”URL or link in Google search console and in the Bing webmaster tool or search engine.
What is included in the sitemap.xml file?
It depends on you what do you want to display in the search engine when someone searches for your domain name.
Normally you can add a home page and other pages such as about us, services, contact, blog page.
If you want to index a blog then you can also add categories and tags, blog posts as well.
Personally, I have used categories and post-site maps only. And even I have optimized the categories with the content. But adding everything in the sitemap.xml is not good for the SEO and website experiences on google.
Why sitemap.xml is important for SEO?
It’s because when you have too many things in the sitemap.xml then search engine bots have to crawl each page or post under your main domain or home page URL. And if any page or link is broken or loads slowly then it will notify you in the Google webmaster tools as an error.
The importance of sitemap.xml is SEO is very important. It provides a clear path or road to follow for search engines. It will also help to find duplicate pages or posts on your website. And you will also get notifications when any post or page is not working or the crawlers are not able to read the page.
Even I don’t use images in the sitemap as a separate URL so that it will not duplicate the URL and confuse the traffic or readers and search engine.
The simplest the sitemap.xml the better it will be for your blog SEO and readers.
And make sure that you test your sitemap and also visit google webmaster tools often so that your blog will remain error-free.
And also, never ignore the error notification emails from the search console or webmaster tools. I know that we’re busy with many other things, so we ignore or procrastinate on those mails, but all those errors or reports are important to study or resolve those errors for the consistent success of your blog and business website.
In beginning, you will not see the impact in the traffic, but later when those errors create more other errors on the blog, then it will decrease traffic to the posts and blog.
If you keep delaying then later solving those errors becomes hard for you. And if you’re not that technical then you have to hire someone or a WordPress expert or WordPress SEO expert to resolve them. And it cost not only the current traffic, revenue, and but also the future value of your blog traffic.
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