Guide to Sitemap Design
If you are creating a website or simply redesigning your current one, you have to make sure to create a sitemap which is very important for it. A sitemap is basically a list of your web pages. Some website owners only have a simple sitemap which includes a text list of their webpages, but there are others who what to give site visitors a better experience so they have a more structured sitemap which contributes positively to overall site planning.
Below are some things to consider in setting up your sitemap.
A sitemap can be created manually or with a tool such as Slickplan if you want something hassle-free. Different website owners have different ideas on how their sitemap should look like and some want their webpages listed in alphabetical order while other divide their pages into categories.
The design of the sitemap is dependent on your niche, the amount of content you plan to add, and how user-friendly you want your site to be.
Web crawlers can crawl from your homepage down to the pages in your sitemap’s listing so that they can go through every page. Your pages will not be included in search engine page rankings if spiders don’t crawl some of your pages. Link your sitemap to your homepage, for SEO purposes.
Too many pages is a no-no for sitemaps. You can be penalized and banished if search engines will think that your site map is a link farm.
What site visitor is there who would be happy to see a 404 in the link he tried to access, a link that was supposed to give him access to information that he is looking for? This can happen if there are breaks in your links. This will not happen if all your links go to the pages that they are supposed to go to.
It is important for your titles to be rich with keywords for SEO purposes. It is also important that short descriptions are included in your sitemap links. With these descriptions, you will give your visitors an easier time in looking for information about specific products and services that they want to know more about.
Make sure that your sitemap has a cohesive design that it relates to other pages in your site. The HTML template should be the same for all pages, and make sure that you think in terms of consistency and unity for all the design elements of your website.
A good sitemap for your website will be for the benefit of your users who will find it easier to use your website and go to your web pages. Just follow what is given above so that you can create a good sitemap for your website.