How To Sitemap: Search Engine Submission

by Stephanie Woods November 4th, 2009 

When I was first learning how to submit XML sitemaps to search engines, I found all the information I needed, however, the information was spread out amongst several sources. My intention is to create a quick reference guide on how to submit your XML sitemap to all of the major search engines (in one convenient location).

If you have no idea what a XML sitemap is, or you are interested in learning how to create one, be sure to check out the precursor to this post: How To Sitemap: Creating XML Sitemaps.

Monty & Spider by Ratkimo

Monty & Spider by Ratkimo

You can wait for the search engines to spider your site and find your XML sitemap via the robots.txt file. Or, you can manually submit your XML sitemap to the major search engines. Personally I’d do both. Submission doesn’t take that long and it doesn’t affect your site negatively.

Please keep in mind that the following search engine submission steps only apply to static sites. If you install one of the XML sitemap plugins for a CMS based site mentioned in my previous post, you will have different steps to follow specific to that plugin. In most cases search engine submission is automatic once you have the plugin installed.

Google XML Sitemap Submission

Webmaster Tools provide valuable information on how your site is crawled (including errors). I personally find Google’s Webmaster Tools to be the most useful and recommend submitting your XML sitemap this way.

Check out Google’s step-by-step instructions for adding a website to Webmaster Tools.

Once you have your site setup in Google Webmaster Tools, login and go to the dashboard on the left. Under Site configuration click on Sitemaps then simply click on the Submit a Sitemap button and enter your website address alongside the location of your XML sitemap: www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml.

Google Webmaster Tools - Add a Sitemap

Yahoo! XML Sitemap Submission

To add your XML sitemap to Yahoo! visit Yahoo! Site Explorer.

After you login with a Yahoo! email address you’ll encounter two options:

  1. Submit a Website or Webpage
  2. Submit Site Feed

Select Submit a Site Feed and enter your site URL alongside the location of your sitemap: www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml.
Yahoo Site Explorer

You can also choose to authenticate your site and utilize the free tools offered by Yahoo! Site Explorer.

Bing XML Sitemap Submission

Bing also provides useful crawl information in their Webmaster Center. You can add your site to a Bing Webmaster Center account here.

First you need to login with a Windows Live ID (you can create a Windows Live ID with any email account). Once you are there you'll see where you need to enter in your site URL alongside the address of your XML sitemap: www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml. Next you simply follow the steps provided for authenticating your account and you’re good to go.
Bing Webmaster Central - 0.2

Alternatively, the quickest (and easiest) way to submit your sitemap is via an HTTP request. This might sound complicated. In reality it is incredibly effortless.

Simply copy and paste the following URL into your web browser. Replace www.yoursite.com with the actual URL of your site. If it works properly you will see a thank you page. And that’s it. You’re done!

http://www.bing.com/webmaster/ping.aspx?sitemap=www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml

Ask XML Sitemap Submission

While you’re on a roll, submit your site to Ask.com. It only takes a matter of seconds, so you might as well. Submit your sitemap via an HTTP request (like the Bing example above).

All you need to do is copy and paste the following URL into your web browser. Replace www.yoursite.com with the actual URL of your site. If the submission works properly a thank you page will be displayed after you hit enter. Easy smeasy.

http://submissions.ask.com/ping?sitemap=http://www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml

If you choose to set your site up with any of the webmaster accounts, be sure to go back and check the data at a later date. The engines need time to collect data, so keep checking back!

For any additional information on sitemaps, a good resource is www.sitemaps.org.

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Stephanie Woods is an internet marketer living in Kelowna, BC. You can find her at her (very) new internet marketing blog. She has also been known to frequent Twitter if you’re into that sort of thing.

Stephanie Woods

Stephanie Woods is a Search Specialist at Blast Radius in Vancouver, BC.

Steph Woods SEO

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9 Responses to “How To Sitemap: Search Engine Submission”

  1. I ALWAYS forget to submit sitemaps to Yahoo…I don't know why, but I just do! I guess it doesn't matter anyway since Yahoo is going to start showing only Bing results soon.

    Anyway, thanks for another great article!

    On a related note, I wrote an article on the difference between XML and HTML site maps after Google recently announced that it prefers HTML site maps. It's called XML Sitemap vs HTML Sitemap, which is better for Search Engine Optimization?

  2. [...] How To Sitemap: Search Engine Submission [Learn SEO], The SEO Scoop [...]

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  4. I really didn’t have an idea about how to submit XML sitemap to major search engines. Hey Stephanie, thank you very much for posting such nice detailed information about how to submit XML sitemap in major search engines. I think you have mastered this subject. Anyway thanks for sharing valuable information.

  5. Meri Garcia says:

    Great article!

    Sitemap submission is one of the many tasks that need to be covered for Online Optimization in Search Engines. There's many other equally important jobs that need to be done in order to get results including

    * Submit Site To DMOZ
    * Submit Site To Yahoo Directory
    * Submit Site To Bing
    * Submit Site To Yahoo
    * Submit Site To Google
    * Configure Google Analytics Feed

    For an easy-to-use SEO project management tool that includes step-by-step tasks I have found http://www.analyticssseo.com. I hope that's helpful too.

    Cheers,

    Meri Garcia
    http://www.websiteredevelopment.com

  6. Miltski says:

    Great! But just a few concern, does it really works the same with siting map for affiliate websites. I made one affiliate website founded by blogging to the bank and I created a landing page for it. But don't know how to create a site map.

  7. Stephanie Woods says:

    Miltski – For more information on how to create sitemaps, you can visit my earlier post on sitemap creation: http://www.seo-scoop.com/2009/10/21/how-to-sitemap-creating-xml-sitemaps/

  8. Leo says:

    Stephanie, what a great article! I was able to get it done in minutes. Thanks for making it simple.