Why You Should Use A Sitemap In Web Design
Many would associate the word “map” as some kind of guide or set of directions. This proves the same for a sitemap. It’s technically a map—but for a website. Sitemaps are also used for website planning and creation. Without this tool, navigating a website won’t be smooth or easy. Its absence will make you go through hiccups and challenges along the way.
Sitemaps are visual representations of your website that aid users in locating information and specific pages on your site. As a pragmatic part of a website, a sitemap will steer consumers to the correct destination rather than having them go around in circles.
Sitemaps are also used during the developmental stages of a website. For example, if you want your website to generate sales or attract more leads, developing the site’s hierarchy can ensure that your visitors will have a better user experience.
Whether you’re starting from the ground up or planning a website redesign, a sitemap is fundamental. Creating one isn’t that difficult, but it requires diligent work to make sure it’s done correctly. This article will give you reasons why you should take advantage of a sitemap:
Situates Everyone On The Same Page
Developing a website requires the expertise of a team of professionals. A team would usually consist of a designer, one or two developers, a project manager, marketing and salespeople, and a copywriter. In some cases, there are more members in the team depending on the project scale. Having a sitemap ensures everything on the project is in sync. Everyone in the team can find themselves on the same page. You can get more information here on how to use sitemaps to plan your projects.
Sitemaps should be kept in a central location where everyone involved in the project can access them and view any changes they make. The sitemap will likely change as the project progresses, so it’s proactively transforming. It can act as a central place to make sure you know what you’ve done, what’s still incomplete, and which parts of the website are making progress.
Easy Website Planning
An early visualization of the website structure is vital to adopt best practices in designing a website. Planning provides greater perspective and represents an essential step in arranging quality content for optimal SEO and a user-friendly interface.
You can clarify your site’s goal by creating a sitemap. You will be able to map out your site more effectively if you understand precisely what you want from it. Additionally, you will be able to decrease the investment, time, and efforts required in the process by taking this approach. When everyone follows through with the sitemap, goals will be achieved according to the timeline.
Search Engine Optimization
The ranking of a webpage in a search engine has become more significant than ever. Indexing available pages are done by search engines using a sitemap. These are the conditions where your site needs sitemap indexing:
- The site you have has a great deal of content.
- Only a few external links point to your website.
- You have just launched your site or added new pages.
- Part of your site isn’t connected internally or is isolated.
- You have uploaded pictures or videos to your site.
Your SEO will genuinely be enhanced with the support of a good sitemap. Unfortunately, the lack of it may lead to search engines identifying replicated pages of your site. This will result in decreasing rankings. There are available tools that let you improve website optimization and check the effectiveness of your sitemaps.
Organizes Your Conversion Funnel
In your conversion funnel, a natural and more straightforward process is the best way to go. With more steps and buttons to click, the greater chance there is for a visitor to exit the site in frustration.
Understand your sitemap to find out which steps you need, and combine efforts, when possible, to expedite the conversion. You can streamline your funnel by using a visual representation, such as a flowchart. After you’ve created a sitemap, perform the test one more time to ensure there are no other necessary steps to partake.
If you don’t have a sitemap for your site, you’ll spend too much time designing unnecessary pages. This, in turn, will make your site more complex and will discourage your visitors, and eventually affect your site rankings.
Before you start developing, spend some time brainstorming or holding practical meeting sessions with your web development team. Talk about what pages should be interconnected and which ones should be discarded. Keep in mind that it is cheaper to make changes early on than making changes when your site is nearly complete or has gone live.