The Sitemap: Real Estate Internet Marketing Tip

Good search engine ranking can do wonders for a real estate Internet marketing program.

Real estate websites with excellent search engine ranking don't have to work as hard driving traffic, because the traffic finds the website. This is the real estate agent's dream -- to receive daily inquiries through a website because of its visibility.

But achieving that kind of search engine ranking takes time and dedication, for there are many steps to follow and tactics to implement.

An XML sitemap is one of those tactics.

Now before I invite confusion, let me clarify the type of sitemap I'm referring to in this article. Basically there are two kinds of sitemaps:

  1. A sitemap that's visible on your website and intended primarily for people.
  2. A sitemap that's not visible on your website and intended for search engines.

In this article, I'm referring to the second sitemap, the one intended for search engines. Basically, the second sitemap is an XML file (acronym not important) that you upload to the main directory of your website. This XML file lists all of your web pages, and it's one of the first files a search engine will look for upon reaching your web domain.

So if a search engine finds this sitemap file -- and if the sitemap lists each of your web pages -- then there's an excellent chance the search engine will locate and index (record) all of your web pages.

This is especially important if you have a large website, a website with complex navigation such as drop-down menus, or a combination of the two. Complex menus that use copious amounts of JavaScript and the like have a way of stopping search engines dead in their tracks. When this happens, the search engine will only give you credit for the pages it can find. A properly created sitemap can alleviate this by giving search engine spiders a "side door" to all of your web pages.

The end result is that (A) you'll have more information to feed the search engines, (B) you'll get credit for more pages and content, and (C) you'll have a better chance of ranking well for the key phrases found within those pages of content.

How to Generate an XML Sitemap

  1. Go here http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/
  2. Enter your URL in the box provided.
  3. Click the start button.
  4. When the sitemap is generated, download the first XML file.
  5. Leave the file name exactly as is (sitemap.xml).
  6. Put the sitemap in the root (main) level of your web domain.

Learn More

This article is part of an ongoing (and extensive) blog series on real estate Internet marketing. For more tips on this subject, visit the author's blog at http://www.armingyourfarming.com/realestatemarketing/