How Important Are XML & Image Sitemaps To Google?


Image optimisation is becoming more vital as Google’s search results are becoming visual. This trend is more visible in industries like ecommerce, travel, etc., where users expect various views of the product. Apart from search engine optimisation, website owners should have XML and image sitemaps on their respective websites.

In case you don’t know, an exemplary XML and image sitemap resembles your website’s roadmap. In simple words, these two elements lead Google to your website’s essential pages. That’s why XML and image sitemaps are boost SEO as they allow the search engines to discover important web pages quickly.

Well, having a good XML and image sitemap is an integral component of your methodological SEO. So with these things in mind, let’s see how these two components affect search engine optimisation. 

A Brief Overview of the XML Sitemaps

To be precise, XML sitemap refers to a file that lists the vital pages of a website. In short, XML sitemaps ensure that Google can find all your website’s pages easily. XML sitemaps also help Google to comprehend the structure of your site.

If you want your website to rank higher, you would need search engines to analyse every webpage present on your site. At times, there are pages that lack internal links. As a result, Google is unable to analyse all the pages of your website. In simple words, a sitemap will boost the discovery of content. Nowadays, web development agencies embed XML sitemaps in websites to ensure your site ranks higher.

Does your Website need an XML Sitemap?

The concept of XML sitemap was launched way back in 2005. Soon after XML sitemaps, the image sitemaps came into the SEO scene. No doubt, XML sitemaps are your go-to strategy to allow search engines to discover larger websites.

In short, websites with a large number of pages along with linking or crawl issues usually deployed XML sitemaps. What’s more, with XML sitemaps, you can even input essential data like the last modified date, priority, etc.

Even a few years ago, XML sitemaps were an essential ranking factor for websites. Even there were tools to help website owners to keep a tab on the data. However, XML sitemaps are not an SEO ranking factor nowadays.

No webmaster needs an XML sitemap for images or pages. XML sitemaps can be compared to a band-aid to address a variety of issues present among large sites. Quite impressively, SEO Company experts nowadays are of the view that you have to follow the right SEO strategies.

If you are following the right SEO techniques, search engines can quickly analyse your website. Also, the coding of your website should be done in such a manner that search engines can assess them. On the other hand, you should also have a sufficient amount of external links to your site. This would cause the search engine spiders to come back to your website.  

Is there any Need to Submit an Image Sitemap to Google?

The same notion holds for image sitemaps too. In simple words, you don’t need an image sitemap at all if the images are coded in an SEO-friendly manner. What’s more, the pages on which the images are should be easily discoverable by the search engine crawler.

However, that is not the case for a majority of the sites out there. A large number of images on websites are presented in such a manner that search engines cannot analyse them. If you maintain a large number of websites or have a feature-packed site, you should deploy image sitemaps. With the help of image sitemaps, you can quickly get your images indexed and incorporated into the search results. 

Types of Pages that should be in XML Sitemap

Contacting web development agencies is a great way to include XML sitemaps in your site. But to find the apt pages which need an XML sitemap? It would be best if you always commenced by analysing the URL’s relevance. Do you want your clients to see that specific URL?

By including an XML sitemap on that page, it would help the page to rank higher. In other words, it is a great way to rank your website higher. On the other hand, even if you don’t include the XML sitemap in the URL, Google would index it. If your website has good internal links, Google will index the specific URL.   

You can check your own XML Sitemap

So as you can see, an XML sitemap is of great significance. In other words, with the help of XML and image sitemap, you would be able to boost your site’s visibility. No doubt, Google can discover the critical pages on your website even if you aren’t using sitemaps.

However, if you have a resource-rich website, including sitemaps is a great way to bolster its rankings. Google would be able to find updated content easily, which helps your website rank higher. In case you don’t know, adding your XML and image sitemap to the Google search console helps Google find your sitemap fast. You would also be able to check for errors related to the sitemap.  

Always remember that an XML and image sitemap is not a ranking signal. In case you don’t know, XML and image sitemaps are the crucial components of Local SEO audits. Before adding sitemaps, ensure to check the internal links and size of your website. But note that including an XML and image sitemap would boost the visibility of your website.