Let's talk about sitemaps.
If your website has more than just a few pages, you probably need a sitemap. But exactly what type of sitemap do you need? There are essentially three main types.
XML is a computer language. Don't worry yourself about the technical details. The most important thing to know is that an XML sitemap will help Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines to crawl and index your website faster and easier.
Just as an XML sitemap is for the search engines, an HTML sitemap is for your human visitors. And it should achieve a similar purpose: let people navigate your site easily and quickly.
Yet another technology, ROR is an independant type of XML. It's basically a way of listing particular types of content so that it can be better understood by the search engines. What type of content? Products, events, reviews, jobs, classified adverts are some examples. If your website contains any content similar to these, you might need an ROR sitemap. See the official ROR website for more information.
What's the easiest way to get a sitemap?
But unless you use a Content Management System (such as Drupal or Wordpress), generating a proper sitemap is not the easiest of tasks. The quickest and easiest way to get your sitemaps is by using a tool like XML Sitemaps.
For websites of up to 500 pages, it's free and, of course, it's easy to use. Visit the homepage at xml-sitemaps.com and follow the simple instructions you find there.
XML sitemaps will generate an XML, HTML and ROR sitemap for you automatically.
It will also produce a text format sitemap which is a simple list of the URLs of all the pages of your website. All my direct clients use this list of pages to help them in their online marketing efforts. If you're following my website marketing program, download the file called urllist.txt and copy and paste this into your Online Marketing spreadsheet and you've got a ready made list of pages to check off your marketing and optimisation activities against.