We all know that Search Engine Optimization is built on the basis of outperforming your competitors in search engine results and maintaining that competitive level throughout the life of your site. But while we can all agree on what SEO actually is, there are many SEO myths that can cause even the best SEO expert to make mistakes that may not just cost their client’s search rankings, but may cost them in the way of resources as well.
SEO Myths: An XML Sitemap Will (not) Make you Stand Out
Here is an SEO myth we don’t run into as often anymore because most of our clients are using WordPress sites which is handled by use of a plugin. However, some of our older clients using other markup languages don’t have sitemaps, at least not regularly updated ones. This presents a problem… but not from an SEO standpoint for a couple of reasons.
First, let’s not forget that sitemaps are crucially important. When Google and other search engines crawl your site (crawl is a term meaning analysis for indexation) they use your sitemap file to gauge where the content of your site is located and to make sure its accessible. According to Neil Patel, Google takes an average of fourteen minutes to index new pages when there’s a sitemap in place. Staggeringly, whenever there is no sitemap, it takes Google almost twenty-four hours to index new pages. The myth that an XML Sitemap will boost your SEO is embedded within this concept. Your content and webpages will be visible to your target audience much quicker with an XML sitemap than without one… but there’s no guarantee that your traffic will increase just due to visibility, though it’s certainly a great start.
If you aren’t using an XML sitemap plugin like the Google XML Sitemaps Plugin or don’t regularly update your XML file by hand, I would highly recommend doing so–but for reasons unrelated directly to SEO. To see what we can do for you to meet your Search Engine Marketing or Optimization goals, contact us today.