Submitting your sitemap to google webmaster tools is a critical setup piece of your website.
Whether you are launching a brand new site or just recently switched over to using WordPress as your content management system (good choice by the way) you need to verify your site with google and submit your sitemaps.
Setting up & submitting your sitemap lets google know about all of your awesome pages & should get them fast tracked into the almighty Google index.
The sooner your optimized pages are indexed, the sooner all of those searchers can query your pages.
Follow the below steps inside of your wordpress install to submit your sitemaps in under 10 minutes.
1. Create Your WordPress Sitemap with a plugin
I use and love Yoast’s WordPress SEO plugin. It allows me to get all of my on page SEO in order and also has built in sitemap functionality.
If you are using another wordpress plugin for sitemap functionality, that is fine too. Just skip down to the submission process
2. Generate Your Sitemap the Plugin
In the XML Sitemaps panel in Yoast, you will see this screen.
Check the box to enable sitemap functionality, exclude any custom post types, tag pages, category pages, that you don’t want to submit to google. I don’t generate (or use) tags on inbound now so I have that checked to exlcude.
I’m also excluding a custom post type for Shortcodes that I use, because the content is gibberish to search engines and you don’t want to muck up google’s index.
3. Grab Your Sitemap Links!
Head over to your new sitemap index page.
4. Look a sitemap!
This is the example of what my sitemap index looks like on Inbound Now. The next step will be taking these links and logging into google’s webmaster tools
5. To to Google Webmaster Tools and Login
If you have not added in your website to your google webmaster tools account you can do that in the top right, with the add a site button. You will need to verify ownership of the site. Please see this article to do that.
If your site is already in here, go ahead and drill down into your site’s settings page.
6. Head into the sitemaps section for your website
Under the optimization tab you will see the sitemaps section. Head in there!
7. Now (finally) add your sitemaps into Google Webmaster Tools
Go ahead and add/test your sitemap
8. Test & Submit the different .xml sitemap files
From the Yoast sitemap directory page, go ahead and grab all of those sitemap .xml links and drop them into google webmaster tools. Just use the trailing /whatever-sitemap.xml as your base domain is already there.
9. Success! Google now has your sitemap