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How to Create an XML Sitemap

A sitemap contains a list of all of the pages that are on a particular website.  It is useful because you can submit the sitemap to search engines to let them know when you have added a new page instead of submitting your pages one by one. Sitemaps help search engine crawlers to index your site faster and crawl other pages of your website.

Here are step by step instructions on creating a sitemap:

1. Visit the XML Sitemaps website.

2. Enter your web address.

3. Copy (Ctrl+A) (Ctrl+C) the contents that are in the window which reads,

“XML Sitemap Content (XX pages):”

4. Open a text editor such as Word Pad or Note Pad and paste (Ctrl+V) the contents into a blank document.

5. Save the document into your web folder as  sitemap.xml.

6. Upload the sitemap to your website.

That’s it, now you can submit your sitemap to Google , Yahoo or where ever you would like.

If you are like me and you manually add in urls to your site map, be careful. I edit my sitemap manually because in certain directories I only want to have a few pages included in my sitemap so I block out the entire directory and manually add the pages that I want shown in the sitemap.  I use my sitemap tool to generate the sitemap and then for directories where I only wanted the few pages to be shown, I add in the code manually for my pages like this:

<url>
<loc>http://www.hooverwebdesign.com/directory/</loc>
<lastmod>2008-03-13T15:20:16-06:00</lastmod>
<changefreq>weekly</changefreq>
<priority>0.5</priority>
</url>

 I made the mistake one day of adding one of my subdomains like this:

<url>
<loc>http://www.photos.hooverwebdesign.com/</loc>
<lastmod>2008-03-13T15:20:16-06:00</lastmod>
<changefreq>weekly</changefreq>
<priority>0.5</priority>
</url>

This gave my sitemap an error in Google Webmaster Tools. Oops. I fixed it right away by adding a new sitemap without the subdomain included.

So don’t add a subdomain to your sitemap. A subdomain needs it own sitemap.

Enjoy!

Gina

Content © 2008 Hoover Web Design http://www.hooverwebdesign.com

March 15th, 2008 at 7:21 am


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