Have you recently built your site on WordPress and wanted to show all your webpages on Google?
If yes, then you have to submit all your page URLs to Google. For this, you do not need to upload each and every page to Google manually.
You just need to create and submit Sitemap Protocol for one time, and it will update all the list of links you published every time instantly.
Here, in this guide, you will learn about
- What is Sitemap
- Which type of Site requires Sitemap
- What is the use of XML Sitemap in SEO
- What is the easiest way to create an XML Sitemap
- How to submit an XML Sitemap to Google
So let's start with the definition.
What is Sitemap
A sitemap is a file that contains the list of web pages (URLs) accessible to crawlers and users. It provides the overview of organization and navigation of your website.
A Sitemaps comes in two popular versions, HTML, and an XML.
HTML Sitemaps are mainly designed for the users to find important content on the site. In this type, you do not need to include each and every subpages. This is just a plain HTML file with a listing of most popular pages of your site.
HTML format used by online stores to guide their shoppers.
However, you cannot submit HTML sitemap to Google Webmaster tool as it is not a supported format for Google.
An XML sitemap was first introduced by Google in 2005, supported by Bing and all other Search Engines. This format is specifically intended for Search engine spiders.
It invites the Search engines to crawl and Index the URLs listed in your site.
An XML sitemap also provides additional information to webmasters, such as
- when the page was last updated,
- how often it changed and
- the importance of the page related to other URLs in the blog.
Why you need an XML sitemap for your WordPress blog
Having and submitting an XML Sitemap is a most basic SEO practice that every blogger should follow.
You will agree that Site traffic is the most important factor for the success of any online business, and nowadays Search engines are the major source of that traffic.
To get more search traffic, you have to make sure that all your blog pages are properly crawled and got indexed by Search Engines’s Crawlers.
The XML sitemap is a blueprint of your site, and it makes easier for Google to find all your pages. That is useful for SEO as Google rank for individual pages, not for whole website.
Sitemaps are crucial for new blog or website because usually, new blogs do not get enough backlinks. So, It will be harder for Search engines to finds all the pages available on site.
The sitemap allows them to crawl all your links efficiently.
For Large website It allows Google to guess how often the site is updating and which pages are regularly updating. This helps Google to set crawl rate over others.
No matter what kind of site your is, there is no downside of having an XML Sitemap, but having one will definitely improve your SEO. So I highly recommend it.
How to create an XML sitemap
You do not need to add all the URLs manually to create a sitemap. If You are a WordPress user, then you can easily create it by using Sitemap Plugins.
There are many plugins available to create XML Sitemap, but out of them Google XML Sitemap and WordPress SEO by Yoast are best to use.
Google XML sitemap plugin by Arne Brachhold ( is NOT produced by Google) specially designed to create an XML sitemap, readable by Google and otherSearch engines like Bing, Yahoo, and Ask.com.
On the other side, Yoast SEO is one of the best SEO plugin available for WordPress.
It has a lot of other SEO features addition to just creating a sitemap, thus helps to create fully optimized content and boost Search ranking.
This plugin also helps to decide which page has to show in Sitemap and Which not.
At ReadyForBlog, I am using Yoast SEO Plugin to generate a sitemap.
To know more about this plugin,
I highly recommend reading the Features offered and complete setup guide of WordPress SEO by Yoast.
In this post, Let's have a look at how to generate an XML sitemap using Yoast SEO (free) plugin.
To create XML sitemap, the first thing you need to do is install and activate the Yoast SEO Plugin on your website. Skip this step if you have already activated that plugin.
After activating the plugin, You will see SEO option with Yoast SEO logo in WordPress Dashboard. From there navigate to XML Sitemap and click on it.
Now enable the XML Sitemap Functionality.
Here you can also configure the maximum entries per sitemap. If you are unsure, keep the default value which is 1000.
Now you have created an XML sitemap for your site.
From now Yoast SEO automatically creates and update your sitemap as you update or create a new post on your blog.
Note: If you are not a WordPress user then you can use online tools like XML-Sitemap to create a sitemap.
To view your XML Sitemap append /sitemap.xml (or) /sitemap_index.xml to the end of your domain name.
Yoast SEO creates the sitemap in the clean form which is easily accessible and readable by humans too.
So, for many bloggers, there is no need to create separate HTML Sitemap. If you wish, just providing a link at footer is sufficient.
How to submit an XML sitemap to Google
Ok, you have successfully created XML Sitemap for your site.
Now it's time to submit to Google and other major Search engines.
You can directly submit your XML Sitemap to Google via Google Search Console.
Note: To submit, first you must verify your blog ownership with Google.
I am assuming that you have already had a Google Webmaster account and had verified your site.
If not? Follow the below quick guide.
How to Verify your Blog with Google Search Console.
- Login to Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tool) using your Google account.
- Click on Add a Property Button.
- Provide your Site full URL in the box and Click Add button.
- Next, choose the HTML Tag from Alternate Method and copy only the code.
- Now Login to your WordPress Website to verify your ownership.
- Navigate from WordPress Dashboard to ->SEO (WordPress SEO Plugin) ->Dashboard -> Webmaster Tools.
- Select Google Search Console and add the code in the box. Click Save Changes.
- Switch back to Google Search Console and Click Verify.
That’s it. You have successfully verified your site with Google.
After having your website listed on Google, you can follow the below guide step by step.
Sign-in to your Google Search Console account, and select the Property (Website).
If you have more website listed in Google, then choose the one for which you want to submit the Sitemap.
Then in the Left pane, Click on Crawl and under it select The Sitemaps.
From top right of the pane, Click on ADD/TEST SITEMAP button and type the URL of your website’s Sitemap in the box.
If you have generated using Yoast SEO plugin, then your sitemap will be like “sitemap_index.xml” if not it will be different (sitemap.xml), So Test it before submit.
However, the process is same.
Click on Submit, and you have all done submitting your XML Sitemap to Google Search Console.
Processing of submitted sitemap takes time to completely fetched by Google and can take from a few minutes to few days.
Follow the Same steps to submit a sitemap to Bing from inside your Bing Webmaster Tool account.
- Always test the sitemap Before submitting it.
- Resubmit the sitemap after doing significant changes to your site, like changing permalink structure, adding https port.
So, That’s my mega guide on Creating and Submiting XML Sitemap to Google.
Use the below comment box to let me know which plugin you use to create a sitemap?
Feel free to ask me if you have any query regarding this tutorial; I would love to answer.
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