Why Having a Sitemap is an Important SEO Tool

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Services for Real Estate Pros with Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing
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Why Having a Sitemap is an Important SEO Tool

A Sitemap is a snapshot of all the pages on your website. It's a file or page on the site that compiles a list of URLs of every page, post or blog on your website. Website Sitemap

Why is this important? Several reasons actually. Human-wise it's a helpful page for readers to go to if they want to find a particular page without searching through other blogs, posts or your menu.  This is especially helpful for sites with blogs since the archives only give you dates, not articles or posts.

This is especially helpful for search engines to crawl your entire site quickly and efficiently. It's basically showing a list of all the pages the search engines should crawl in a standard format that's easy to read.

Sitemaps are one of the only pages in which having over 100 links on the page is a good idea.(Typically this is not a good idea and it's always smart to check the number of links you have per page - Google stops looking at the links at around 100)

An XML Sitemap is even better if you can add it. WordPress sites have plug-ins that allow for an automatic XML Sitemap and will add your posts every time you publish them without you manually adding them. This is also a great way to submit a sitemap to search engines for easy crawling. This is just the type of format that the Sitemap is written in and it is best done through Google's Webmaster Tools.

Do I need a Sitemap?

In most cases search engines learn about the pages of your site by following links that lead from one page to another. This may be enough but if your site contains many pages and those that lead from one link to another and another, search engines may not be able to find them all quickly.  Sitemap files enable you to resolve these problems.

How do I create a Sitemap?

You can create a page on your site and simply paste in every URL of your site in list type format. If you don't have an XML capability you can do a Sitemap like I have done here  - Better Homes and Gardens Las Vegas Sitemap. Or you can create the XML Sitemap by putting the file in the root catalog of the HTML server of your website with this type of URL structure: http://yourwebsite/sitemap.xml. There are many online resources available that will help you to create a sitemap file automatically.

 Google's Rules for creating a Sitemap

Having a Sitemap is a good idea for search engines and for eaiser crawling. Yes, letting your pages be found naturally is better but this is not a manipulative tactic but one that Google and others appreciate and find useful. If you're interested in creating one, take a look at the link above for more specifics on how to create one on your specific platform and the rules behind a good one.

 

 

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ActiveRain and SEOTammy Emineth is an expert in custom content and original articles for blogs, website, press releases and more. Contact me anytime and feel free to subscribe to this blog to stay up to date on my latest blogs and informative information. Email me or contact me for Real Estate Website Marketing and SEO Content Writing.

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The information contained in this blog is believed to be true and correct and while every effort is made to assure that the information is as accurate as possible, the author of this blog, and its comments disclaim any implied warranty or representation about it's accuracy for any particular purpose. All information is copy written and the property of Tammy Emineth.  

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Re-Blogged 4 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Kevin Guttman Colorado Home Loans 02/15/2012 11:47 AM
  2. Marge Piwowarski 02/15/2012 01:04 PM
  3. Linda Jamail Marshall 02/16/2012 06:52 PM
  4. Winston Heverly 09/24/2012 09:14 PM
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Show All Comments
Rainer
96,421
Bart Foster
Keller Williams Realty Boston - Metro - Boston, MA
Boston MA Real Estate

Still questioning the power of a site map? This past week 3 buyers called me regarding listings which were listed with other agents...... Boya, love it. They Googled for an address and found me as one of the few sites with an actual name, not Realtor.com, Zillow.com or even one of the big brokerage... They wanted to talk to an agent not a faceless web site.

I suggest testing if your site is indexed?  Go to google and enter "site:YourDomainName.com" <please no need to enter the "'s> For Example, try my website: site:www.DistinctiveBostonRealEstate.com Notice that google now has about 205,000 indext pages; up from 170K 2 months ago.  A little over a year ago, this domain did not exist. After I moved I had only 20 or so pages indexed. The site increased to about 500 and stayed that way until I took action.

Community pages are a great way to do give your site some content such as http://www.distinctivebostonrealestate.com/back_bay_boston_ma_condos_for_sale.asp

For those real techie's out there, I run a program most every night from InSpyder.com to spyder my own site for new listings, upload a new listing sitemap and then inform Google.

However, if your site has a Framed IDX/VOW, all of this effort I am told will of little use as I hear google will not give your site credit. Good luck with the SEO. It is worth the effort

 

February 16, 2012 01:11 PM #91
Anonymous
Anonymous
Self Defense Products

A SEO plan is of the utmost importance when promoting your website. The XML sitemap is the way to get indexed quicker by Google. Without links your site will get found eventually but the quicker your property is indexed the quicker your site will show up in search. Also if you have created any outbound links, they will also not be found til your site is crawled by the google bots. Therefore let that be your most important part of your website as the gratification of your site showing in search will give you that push to put your next step in action which is the building of links to raise yourself up in the rankings.

February 16, 2012 01:29 PM #92
Rainmaker
36,615
Mark Simoff
Downing-Frye Realty - Naples, FL
Naples Beach and Vacation Homes

Thanks for the information Tammy, I have to get more pages so I can create a map!

February 16, 2012 01:41 PM #93
Rainmaker
160,972
Karen Steed
Tallapoosa, Bremen, Waco, Buchanan, Temple, Carrollton - Tallapoosa, GA
Associate Broker Haralson Realty licensed in GA and AL

Thanks Tammy.  Your info always makes me realize how totally clueless our office is.

We may have to specialize in people who do not use the internet at all.

 

February 16, 2012 02:03 PM #94
Rainer
45,004
Jairo Arreola
Aladdin Realty - San Jose, CA
VA Home Loan Specialist - SF Bay Area - South Bay - San Jose

Thanks again for the info Tammy! Bookmarked for future reference

February 16, 2012 03:27 PM #95
Ambassador
407,705
Tammy Emineth
Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing - Marysville, WA
Content Marketer, SEO Teacher, Website Fixer

Olga - Great! Let me know if you need help

Craig - Hey, I have one of those! ;-)

Bobby - Great! Awesome

Jaz - great! (Anyone tell you that you look like Tiffany Amber Theissen!?)

Kimo - Absolutely!

Oscar - It's not a bad idea at all. I like having the one in my example for people, it's a great way to link back to your pages in an outline type formate using the titles and keywords, then the URL one for search engines.

Tracy - Great! And there are a lot of rules out there! AND they keep changing!

Travis - Great! Good luck!~

February 16, 2012 04:00 PM #96
Ambassador
407,705
Tammy Emineth
Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing - Marysville, WA
Content Marketer, SEO Teacher, Website Fixer

Derek, Thanks so much!! Glad it was so helpful!

Bart, you should take all this and create a new blog with this information. Framed IDX's are starting to get some traction but are a little more difficult to index since so many have the same.


SDP - Simply submitting your link all over the place helps get it out. Submit to facebook, twitter and linked just to name a few will help. Having that sitemap to really crawl will be worth its weight.

Mark - you can do it now! Get the plug in.. better yet, have Tim install it for you! ;-)

Karen - HA... good luck with that! ;-)

Jairo - great! Glad its helpful!!

February 16, 2012 04:05 PM #97
Ambassador
354,672
Rich Cederberg
eXp Realty - Albuquerque, NM
eXp Realty

Where do you recommend putting the site map link for humans to find?  Should it have a link in the navigation at the top of the page below the header or just a small link at the bottom of the page? 

February 16, 2012 06:28 PM #98
Ambassador
407,705
Tammy Emineth
Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing - Marysville, WA
Content Marketer, SEO Teacher, Website Fixer

I like having it at the bottom in the footer. Than it's on every page for easy indexing and locating.

February 16, 2012 06:40 PM #99
Rainmaker
1,244,324
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

Tammy thanks for the explanation.  I had some ideas about what it was, but you really helped me to understand why it is a help to me.

February 16, 2012 07:01 PM #100
Rainmaker
26,089
Aaron Mazurek
Coast Realty Group, (Powell River) Ltd - Powell River, BC
Powell River Property For Sale (BC)

Excellent advice... and excellent timing too.

We are just redesigning our site. So I will ask for this to be included.

February 16, 2012 07:07 PM #101
Rainmaker
360,327
Cathy Bureau
www.GreenHomeRealty.com - Austin, TX
Your Personal Real Estate Concierge

104 comments later, great blog! I'll forward this one to my IT guy, aka my hubby. He really is an IT consultant, but for large companies who have document mgt issues.

February 16, 2012 07:32 PM #102
Rainer
14,339
Derya Martin
Meybohm Realtors - Augusta, GA

Hi there i love your blogs they are very helpful thank you:) How much do you charge to work on sites do you have a price sheet of services provided?

February 16, 2012 09:35 PM #103
Rainmaker
275,599
Steven Pahl
Keller Williams Tampa Properties - Tampa, FL
Real Estate Consultant Tampa, FL 813-319-6423

It's so easy a Caveman can do it,

"Or you can create the XML Sitemap by putting the file in the root catalog of the HTML server of your website with this type of URL structure: http://yourwebsite/sitemap.xml."

So much to learn, so little time.  Thanks for letting me know about one more thing I didn't know about!

February 17, 2012 06:13 AM #104
Rainmaker
630,004
Stephanie/Bob The Ruiz/Miller Team
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

Hi Tammy, great suggestion.  I haven't used a stie map myself in a while, but remember how helpful they are.

February 17, 2012 01:50 PM #105
Anonymous
Anonymous
Brad Thomson

Thanks for the post!

February 18, 2012 06:19 AM #106
Rainmaker
350,236
Pete X-Investment to Luxury, Huntington Beach, CA -GRI-MCNE 714.459.2017 OCLister.com
X Group Real Estate Advocates - Huntington Beach, CA
Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide

Tammy,

There is much I need to learn about SEO.

Thanks for your information!

February 18, 2012 09:41 PM #107
Rainer
57,445
Wayne Jackson
Lakeshore Realty 208-714-4109 - Hayden, ID
North Idaho Realtor, Serving Coeur dnullAlene and Hayden Lake

Tammy, I'm just starting to build a website and I'm reading many of your posts. There's a lot to learn.

March 13, 2012 10:39 PM #108
Rainmaker
261,430
Wayne B. Pruner
Oregon First - Tigard, OR
Tigard Oregon Homes for Sale, Realtor, GRI

This SEO stuff hurts my head! My site map is automatic. Whew!

October 22, 2012 05:11 PM #109
Rainmaker
125,758
Matt Robinson
ERA Emerald Coast Realty - Pensacola, FL
Pensacola Real Estate (850) 292-4000

Great post and great information.  I just made a note to add a sitemap to my sites, and I tweeted your article to my followers on Twitter.  Good stuff!

October 31, 2012 09:27 AM #110
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Ambassador
407,705

Tammy Emineth

Content Marketer, SEO Teacher, Website Fixer
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