How to create a site map (Sitemap) to WordPress

No matter how well you do on the ground, it is always useful to have a map, right? Same thing with the search engines. They can and do crawl your site, but you can make their jobs easier, creating a so-called a site map.

In fact, Sitemaps inform the search engines like Google and Bing how to construct your website. Thus they can more effectively view and index your site. Search engines are key in SEO strategies. In this article we will explain why and how you can customize your site map for WordPress.

What is Sitemap and what is its use

To explain what a site map, you need to know how the search engines index the web. Search engines send robot pickers that go through all the links on the Internet. Every time they find a new link, collectors index the new page. And then this page can be found in the search engine.

Maps of the sites accelerate this process, providing search engines a detailed map of your web site. Instead of finding internal references to your content, the collector instantly knows the location of all pages on your web site.

Maps of the sites – it is nothing like a magic wand for SEO, they will improve the indexing of your website.

They also provide search engines with additional information, for example, date of last page update, frequency of changes and importance. This information can further help the search engines to optimize the research of your website.

Sitemaps XML vs HTML

Sitemaps XML are the most common. They are as we have described above are designed for search engines. Their data is not useful to people, and you can only use them to improve indexing.

Maps of the sites HTML, on the other hand, can use both humans and search engines. This is a real page on your website where visitors and search engines can find out the location of your content. Search engines will still be able to explore this page, but it will appeal to both curious visitors.

So what type to use?

The answer is BOTH! No need to choose one or the other. They do not conflict and both bring benefits. If you don’t believe us, see what says former Google guru on SEO XML and HTML site maps:

How to create a XML Sitemap in WordPress

Given the popularity of SEO plugins, chances are that you already have everything you need to create a site map XML. If you are using Yoast SEO, All in One SEO or SEOPressor, you just need to find the appropriate settings of the plugin to create your Sitemap XML.

Yoast SEO

For example, to configure the Sitemap in Yoast SEO you need to just go to SEO → XML Sitemaps:

In tools Sitemap Yoast SEO, you can enable multimedia applications for the site map XML:

This will increase your traffic from search pictures, increasing the indexing of your media downloads.

All in One SEO Pack

Create site map XML and similar to All in One SEO, just go to All in One SEO → XML Sitemaps:

Google XML Sitemaps

If you don’t have one of those plugins, or you want to have more control over your XML Sitemap, you can use the plugin Google XML Sitemaps. It’s free and is also available in the plugin repository WordPress.org.

After installing the plugin you can configure it in Settings → XML Sitemaps:

Here, you will need to configure on this settings page:

  • Priority records: Set up the calculation of the priority of the scan record. The plugin can automatically calculate the priority depending on the number of comments, or you can do it manually.
  • Content site map: Select the type of content that will appear in your site map. For example, if you want to exclude a category of records archive, then simply remove the checkmark in this field.
  • Frequency change: the frequency changes each type content. This will give search engines the ability to set the priority of the scan. For example, you want to page with frequent updated photos scanned daily.
  • Priorities: You can manually set different priorities for scanning the different content. You probably want to set highest priority for the home page.

How to create Sitemap HTML WordPress

To create a site map HTML you need to go to a special plugin. It’s called WP Sitemap Page and is available for free on WordPress.org.

WP Sitemap Page

After installing the plugin you can start setting it up in Settings → WP Sitemap Page:

You can exclude certain types of records, choose view, header display record and choose to show or not the records that belong to several categories.

You can add a Sitemap on any page using shortcode. The plugin has many custom shortcodes that allow you to display only pages, tags, categories, etc. You can also configure collation settings.

A good idea is placing the shortcode in the section, accessible from the footer. So people and search engines can find it quickly, but it will not take the place of the menu.

How to tell search engines about your XML Sitemap

After you create a site map left to do only one thing — to tell search engines where they can find her.

Showing search engines where you store your site map, you will be assured that they will find it and be aware of any changes on your website.

To submit your site map to Google, you need to register in Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools) and follow their instructions.

The results

Sitemaps is a simple and fast way to improve your WordPress website. Creating a XML Sitemap you will simplify the job search engines to study your content. And with the help of maps of the sites HTML, you can not only improve the user-friendliness of the web site to the search engines, but also to satisfy curious users.

You just have to, at least, create XML Sitemap, but if you have time, we recommend to add a site map HTML.

And you have already created a site map? Tell us in the comments!

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