It is a very basic question bloggers often ask how to create a sitemap or what plugin I should use to create sitemap for my blog. According to Wikipedia:
A site map (or sitemap) is a list of pages of a web site accessible to crawlers or users. It can be either a document in any form used as a planning tool for web design, or a web page that lists the pages on a web site, typically organized in hierarchical fashion. This helps visitors and search engine bots find pages on the site.
From definition it’s clear that sitemap can be generated for both Search Engine bots & visitors. HTML sitemap is used for visitors when XML sitemap is for SE bots. Personally I use two plugins to generate these two sitemaps as follows:
Sitemap for Visitors
Dagon Design Sitemap Generator is a simple free sitemap generator which is highly customizable from its own options page in the WordPress admin panel. Some of its features include: support for multi-level categories and pages, category/page exclusion, multiple-page generation with navigation, permalink support, choose what to display, what order to list items in, show comment counts and/or post dates, and much more.
Sitemap for SE Bots
The basic premise behind XML sitemap is that some sites have a large number of dynamic pages that are only available through the use of forms and user entries. The Sitemap files can then be used to indicate to a web crawler how such pages can be found. Google XML Sitemaps plugin is the best for this purpose. This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your blog.
Both these plugins can be installed and configured easily from WordPress Dashboard. Extensive documentations can be found in plugins directory.
If you have any problem in using these plugins, please share your experience for further assistance.
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