Alacrify Ltd

Submitting Websites to Search Engines

Published on: 23rd September 2009
By Alacrify



Submitting Websites to Search Engines

This week we have been making sure we're getting the most exposure for all our clients' websites and have started to resubmit their site information to four of the major search engines: Google, Yahoo!, Bing and Ask Jeeves.

To achieve this we have updated (and in some cases created) new XML sitemaps for the sites which Google, Bing and Ask Jeeves can then use to find all the pages in the site really easily. The format for these sitemaps is really simple;

<urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance" xsi:schemalocation="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9 http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9/sitemap.xsd>
<url>
<loc>https://www.alacrify.co.uk/page/terms+and+conditions</loc>
<priority>1.00</priority>
<changefreq>daily</changefreq>
</url>
</urlset>

Every page is listed individually using the script above that is shown from <url></url> Each page then has a priority (1 for most important, 0.01 for least). And then there's the change frequency showing how often the page content is updated.

This little file is then saved as sitemap.xml and saved into the root directory of the website and uploaded on to the server.

Each of the search engines is then notified that the sitemap exists so they can then visit it and use it to index the site.

Submitting Sitemaps to Google

You need to have a Google account to submit sitemaps to Google. Go to https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/home?hl=en and log in to use Google's Webmaster Tools to register you site and submit the sitemap.

google webmaster tools

Registering your site is a two-step process. Firstly you add the site using the "add a site" button where you type in the url of your website. Then you need to verify your ownership of the site. This means either uploading an empty html file with a particular filename that is allocated by Google, or by adding in a meta tag with a verification code in it to your home page header. Both of these options are reached by clicking on the "verify this site link" and following the instructions on the page.

Upload the sitemapOnce the site is verified you can then add a sitemap which is done by pointing Google to the sitemap file on the site. Click on the site name on your Webmaster Tools home page. Then at the bottom on the right hand side is the sitemap area. Click on "more" to add a new site map or administer you current site maps. You can then add a new sitemap by clicking on the "Submit a Sitemap" button.

Checking sitemap indexing

Submitting Sitemaps to Yahoo!

To submit a sitemap to Yahoo! you also need to have a Yahoo! account. Then go to  https://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com and when you've logged in you can add the site in the top box. When the site is added you will need to download a verification file, which again needs to be uploaded into the root directory of your website to confirm your ownership of the site. Once this is done your site will be added to the queue for indexing.