To put it simply, web crawlers discover different web pages from URLs within the website or from other webpages. Sitemap supplements this available data to allow link’s crawlers to select all sitemap’s URLs and crawl them by using their metadata.
There is no guarantee that if you are using a sitemap, the search engine will include your web pages. However, it will provide you a hint to crawl your site in a better way.
Why Are Sitemaps Important for SEO?
XML sitemaps have great functional significance when it comes to generating and improving SEO. To understand how they are important, imagine your website as your house where each webpage is a room. Now think of the XML sitemap as your house’s blueprint and Google as a home inspector.
Having a blueprint of each room, Google inspector can easily find the rooms in your house. That is to say, XML sitemaps are significant for improving SEO as they help Google find webpages easily on your website. Google does not only rank websites but also webpages.
Many SEO professionals prefer to create XML sitemaps.
XML sitemaps are important in the following scenarios:
- Your website’s pages are dynamic, for instance, e-commerce sites
- Your website is not well-structured or well-linked
- Your website is new and has very few external links
- Your website contains a huge amount of archived content
Misconceptions about XML Sitemaps
There is no denying that XML sitemaps are powerful tools to improve SEO. However, there are numerous misconceptions about using them.
It is a common misconception that XML sitemaps get your website pages indexed. It is not true. Google only indexes web pages because it crawls them. Another reason is Google finds webpage ’s quality good enough to index them.
Lack of Consistency
A common mistake that many users do is that they block their webpage in robots.txt. By doing this, they simply remove XML sitemaps from Google index. The key to fix this is to avoid including webpage in XML sitemaps and then setting meta robots that say’ index follow’.
Quality of a Webpage
Google uses some measures to assess the overall quality of your webpage. If your website has more than 500 pages, Google knows that not all of them are useful. Do not include all the pages on XML sitemaps as it affects the quality of your webpage. Instead of grade them, like 150 ‘A’ grade, 100 ‘B’ grade, and 50 ‘C’ grade on XML sitemaps to let Google search content for its quality and utility.
Overall, XML sitemaps are a great tool for SEO professionals that allow Google to crawl important pages of their website. They efficiently lead Google to find the most relevant and significant information easily and help it underhand the structure of your website.