How to submit a sitemap to Google

Submit sitemap to Search Console

You can’t succeed on the web if Google doesn’t know about your site. Learn how to submit a sitemap to Google.

It’s the biggest search engine out there with over 3.5 billion searches daily. People rely on it to bring them everything from movie schedules to explanations of brain surgery.

Google needs to know your site exists before it can rank it. Wait long enough, and Google will find it, but why wait?

You can submit a sitemap to Google and speed up the process.

How do you do that? Let’s dig into the process.

Preliminaries

Before you submit, you need to make a sitemap. While they can be HTML-based, XML sitemaps are standard and most tools default to that format.

If you use WordPress (and why wouldn’t you?), you can use a plugin to make the sitemap.

Validating your sitemap is optional, but it can save you trouble later on. W3schools offers a free XML validator, while W3C provided a free HTML validator.

The sitemap needs to be added to your site if you build it offline. Most hosting companies include an FTP option in the control panel. A standalone FTP application will also let you upload a file to the site.

Be sure to make a note of the sitemap’s URL.

Now it’s it time to head to Google.

How to submit a sitemap to google

You send the sitemap to the Google Search Console. You’ll need a Google account to sign into the system.

If you haven’t already, add your website by entering the URL into the box. Next, you verify ownership of the site.

There are multiple verification methods available, such as adding an HTML file or tag to your site. An alternate method logs you in with your domain registrar.

After verification, you need to look for the crawl menu and click on it. Select the sitemaps option.

You should see any previously submitted sitemaps and the add/test button. Select the test/add button.

Enter the URL of your sitemap into the box and click on submit. Assuming the submit sitemap to Google was successful, it should start indexing almost immediately. It may require some time for Google to complete the indexing process.

Submissions do sometimes fail. If Google doesn’t identify a particular problem, validate the sitemap again. Recheck that you have the right URL for the sitemap before you try to submit.

Considerations

Google limits the size of sitemap files to 10 MB and limits them to 50,000 URLs. If you have a large site, such as a retailer with an extensive catalog, you’ll need to break up the sitemap into several files. Google permits multiple sitemaps.

XML also provides media type extensions you can apply to images, videos, and news. Some website owners choose to create separate sitemaps to handle these specific media types.

Submitting your sitemap to Google requires minimal work, but puts you on a global stage. Anyone in the world searching for your keywords can find your site.

Remember, keeping your SEO in order is more than just working with your sitemap. I like and use WordPress SEO and All In One SEO Pack, both of which have XML sitemap functionality – Check out the article When It’s Yoast vs All in One SEO Pack, Who Wins?

You should also check out  5 Easy WordPress SEO Tips and use the optimization checklist to ensure best SEO results.

 

About Lars Koudal

My name is Lars Koudal and I work as a WordPress Consultant and SEO analyst.Born and raised in Denmark I moved to Barcelona in 2008 and in 2015 I moved to Miami.

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