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Use Sitemaps To Improve Your Search Engine Ranking
Originally Published: September 16, 2003
Editor's Note: Another way to make your site easy to spider is to create a search engine spider map which links to every page on your site. Notice that many people confuse site maps with spider maps. See Site Maps And Spider Maps: Linking Pages Compared.
Which page on your web site is the most important page? The product page? The contact page? Or the order page? Whatever it is, the sitemap page is among the most important pages on your web site.
A sitemap page is a navigation help for your visitors. It contains links to all important pages of your web site and it gives web site visitors an overview of your web site structure.
Check out these examples for well designed sitemaps:
If you don't have a sitemap page on your web site yet, you should create one. It's enough to create just a formatted list of links to the pages on your site to gain these benefits:
If you submit your web site to the search engines, submit your sitemap page instead of the home page. Sitemaps provide links to all important pages of your web site. This allows search engines to find all your pages and to index them easily.
If a search engine requires the submission of your main page, make sure that your main page links to your sitemap page.
Sitemaps allow you to use your most important key phrases in the description text of the links that point to your important pages. Many search engines rank those web pages higher that have links pointing to them containing the search term in the link text.
Many people can't find what they're looking for on a web site. If you provide a prominent link to your sitemap on every page of your web site, you can help your visitors to find what they're looking for.
A good structure for a sitemap is first a paragraph describing your company, your products and your philosophy, then a formatted list of your links, along with short descriptions for every link.
In summary, a sitemap helps visitors and search engines to find the most important pages of your web site. Don't miss the chance of improving your search engine rankings with such a simple tool.
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