Sitemaps 101

What are Sitemaps?
In simple terms, a Sitemap is a list of URL’s for your site that help inform the search engines about pages that are on your site, and search engines like, Google, Yahoo and Bing really like them. Instead of us trying to explain…we’ll let the experts explain…

 
Basic explanation of Sitemaps and protocol:
www.sitemaps.org

Here’s what Google says:
http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=156184&from=40318&rd=1

How do I create a Sitemap?
Ideally, your Sitemap should be in XML format, however you can provide them in RSS feeds and text files, however those provide limited information compared to XML formatted Sitemaps.

Click on the link below for information from Google on how to create a Sitemap.
http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=183668

If you don’t have an XML editor on your computer, you can download a free one by going to:
http://free.editix.com/download.html

Here are some Sitemap generators that you can use as well (some of these do have a fee).
http://code.google.com/p/sitemap-generators/wiki/SitemapGenerators

NOTE: We do not provide support with assisting you on creating a Sitemap.

How do I add a Sitemap to my DistributorCentral website?
Once you have your Sitemap created, you can simply upload the XML document to your website.

To do this:
Edit your site
– Go to the Content Manager area
– Click on the Documents tab and then on the Add New Document button
– Browse and Upload the Sitemap file from your computer
Publish your site

Once published, you should be able to access the Sitemap by entering in your URL and then your sitemap name (see image below).

Next, you can then submit the Sitemap in your search engine webmaster account(s) (see example below).

Now…there is a different type of Sitemap that you can create for your site for visitors use as opposed to search engines. Basically, it’s just a custom page where you list all the different page URL’s associated with your site. This could be beneficial if you have a particularly complex website with many pages (below is a basic example).