Different Types of Sitemap

Sitemaps are an important part of search engine optimization and also helps to make the website
user-friendly. It is very similar to the index page of the book. Index page helps us to understand
the content of the book along with the information of where it is located. With the help of the index
page, we can easily browse to the desired chapter in the book. Similarly, a sitemap helps real
users as well as various search bots to identify different pages on the website and where they are
located. As we have understood how sitemap works, let's divide in detail to understand different
types of sitemaps, benefits in SEO, how to create a sitemap and where to upload them on the

Sitemaps make navigating your site easier and having an updated sitemap on your site is good
both for your users and for search engines. Normally there are two types of sitemap from the
viewpoint of purpose, one for the real users and another one for the web crawlers. For real users,
you can use HTML sitemap generated either by Php or by an asp, nowadays when you host your
website in CMS such as Wordpress a sitemap plugin will help you to easily generate sitemaps and
keep them regularly updated. 

The sitemap for Real users:

HTML Sitemap:

Code example of HTML:

HTML lang="en"
head This is a site map head
h1 header of HTML site map h1
p site map paragraph with links

You can also have an XML version of the above-mentioned sitemap i.e. HTML sitemap as XML

Code example of XHTML:

?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"
!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Strict//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-strict.dtd"
html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" xml:lang="en" lang="en">
head This is a site map head
h1 header of XHTML site map h1
p site map paragraph with links p

Apart from these let see the sitemap that serves the purpose of Search Engines i.e. Sitemap in the format which Search Engine understands, as such sitemap is only visible to search engines they are worthless for Real people. Anyway, its importance cannot be Underestimated.

Text sitemaps

Text sitemaps contain one website URL per line. Many search engines including Google and Yahoo can scan text sitemaps. For Yahoo, name the primary text sitemap file urllist.txt.

Example of text sitemap file:


ROR sitemaps

ROR (Resources of a resource) expands on the RSS protocol with its own extensions. The standard file extension for ROR files is .ror. All search engines that understand RSS sitemap files continue to understand the RSS parts of ROR files. However, no major search engine, if any at all, currently supports the ROR sitemap extensions. So let we don’t elaborate it.

XML sitemaps

In 2005 Google started its own sitemaps protocol based on XML. It was called Google Sitemaps. Google later convinced more search engines to follow and the standard was renamed to XML sitemaps protocol. Currently, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft MSN Search, Ask, IBM and possibly more supports XML sitemaps. It is likely that more search engines will implement support for XML sitemaps.

The protocol of XML sitemaps also defines auto-discovery, i.e. how search engines can automatically discover website XML sitemaps. The answer is linking to the XML sitemap, e.g. sitemap.xml, from robots.txt.

Linking to the XML sitemap:

User-agent: *
Sitemap: http://www.example.com/sitemap.xml

Instead of just pointing to one XML sitemap file for auto-discovery, you can list multiple sitemaps:

Sitemap: http://www.example.com/sitemap-1.xml
Sitemap: http://www.example.com/sitemap-2.xml

Or point to XML sitemap index file:

Sitemap: http://www.example.com/sitemap-index.xml

Code example of XML sitemap:

?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?
urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9"
loc http://www.microsystools.com/ loc
priority 1.0 priority
changefreq weekly changefreq
lastmod 2007-06-18 lastmod
loc http://www.microsystools.com/blogs/ loc
priority 0.8 priority
changefreq weekly changefreq
lastmod 2007-06-21 lastmod

RSS feeds as sitemaps

The RSS (Really Simple Syndication) protocol is often used in feed files for the blog, forums, etc. The RSS file format uses XML and has evolved over multiple versions and names, all fairly compatible with each other:
• Really Simple Syndication (RSS 2.0)
• RDF (Resources Description Framework) Site Summary (RSS 1.0 and RSS 0.90)
• Rich Site Summary (RSS 0.91)
After Google and Yahoo adopted RSS feeds as a kind of website sitemaps, more search engines have followed

Code example of RSS sitemap:

?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?
rss version="2.0"
title Website title title
link http://www.example.com link
generator A1 Sitemap Generator generator
lastBuildDate Tue, 13 Mar 2007 22:28:20 GMT lastBuildDate
title Page 1 title
link http://www.example.com/page1.html link
title Page 2 title
link http://www.example.com/page2.html link

(Note: In the tag above arrow mark is not used, please consider the same anyway hope I have done well to make it readable.)

Benefits of Sitemap
Sitemaps are extremely beneficial for both search engines and for real users. With the XML
sitemap, search engines can easily discover an important page on the website. This way by
including an important page of the website in sitemap we can ask search engine bots to regularly
crawl and index them. Even the orphan page on the website can be easily discovered by Search
engine bots if they are available in XML sitemaps. 
HTML sitemap plays an important role in helping real users to easily navigate the website and find
what they are looking for. While browsing a big website if they are lost in between and are unable to
find what they are looking for, such users can easily click on HTML sitemap and find easily find
important pages.
Now we have understood the importance of sitemap, here are some resources which will help you
to create sitemaps within 20 seconds & validate it.
Where to upload the XML Sitemaps?
XML sitemaps are always uploaded at the root directory of the domain. For example:

As now you have understood how to create a sitemap and where to upload them also you need to
understand that an XML sitemap carries a maximum of 50,000 links or not more than 50 MB in
case if you have more pages in the website you need to create multiple sitemaps with name
sitemap1, sitemap2 as explained earlier and need to create & submit sitemap Index file to
Google bots.


  1. Web page creation is no child’s play. Sitemaps can be created either in XML or HTML. These two types of sitemap are created for two different purposes – XML: reaches out to the search engine spiders, and HTML sitemaps are meant for users. An XML sitemap allows web crawlers to easily navigate and access top and deep level links throughout your site. In the case of new websites, an XML sitemap acts as a ‘lighthouse’ for search engines, enabling them to ’see’ the site and index your site much more quickly and thoroughly than simply waiting for the crawlers to find the site on their own, with no map. Visit SEO Company for more information.

  2. Hi, ur article is really nice, while reading it I truly like it. I just wanna suggest that u should submit your blog in this website which is offering very unique features at cheap prices there are expert advertising team who will promote ur blog & affiliate ads through all over the networks which will definitely boost ur traffic & readers. Finally I have bookmarked ur blog & also shared to my friends.i think my friend might too like it hope u have a wonderful day & !!happy blogging!!.

  3. What about image and video maps?

  4. Nice Article, both sitemaps, i.e for users and crawler have their own importance, and its recommended to use both of them, Sitemap for user helps the visitors to find the section which they wants easily, whereas the sitemap or crawler tell the spider to Crawl all the URL's included in sitemap, which again is very important..


Powered by Blogger.