Updated: Oct 23
Content Marketing is very important as a benchmark of the quality of your website, but how do we arrange the information and pages in your website so that it makes sense, and becomes seamless to the user?
Within your website, you may have different Buyer Personas, and different Buyer needs according to their needs, and what is relevant to them. So how do we arrange the information? How to create a sitemap that is most optimal for Search Engine Pages to crawl your website?
History and Background of Site mapping on How to create a sitemap
First of all, let's take a look at where site mapping came from. Essentially, it is related to the science of taxonomy. Everything has an order, class, and subclass, or children. Carolus Linnaeus developed Aristotle's methodology of classification and therefore created the first formal system of taxonomy.
So think of it in this chart hierarchy, and sort your information. Here are a couple of basic samples to get you started with, and get your ideas going.
Start with a Wireframe
Once you have your rough idea, map it out on a Website Wireframe, which is essentially the sitemap. You can either draw it out yourself, or if you want to up it to a more professional level, check out Adobe XD CC wire framing and mockup tool for free.
Creating a sitemap and wireframe are essential steps in the web design and development process. A sitemap is a visual representation of the structure and hierarchy of a website, while a wireframe is a simplified blueprint of a web page's layout and content. Here's how to create both:
Creating a Wireframe:
Page Structure: Start with a basic outline of the page's structure. Define where elements like the header, navigation menu, content area, and footer will go.
Content Placement: Determine where the main content elements will be positioned. This includes text, images, videos, buttons, and other interactive elements.
Layout and Spacing: Define the layout grid and spacing between elements. Consider the alignment of text, margins, and padding around images and content blocks.
Navigation: Design the navigation menu and placement of links or buttons. Ensure a clear and user-friendly navigation system.
Interactivity: Specify any interactive elements, such as forms, buttons, and links, and how they will function on the page.
User Experience (UX): Consider the user experience and how users will interact with the page. Ensure a logical flow and easy usability.
Visual Elements: Add visual elements like placeholders for images, icons, or graphics. These can help visualize the final design.
Annotations: Include notes or annotations to provide additional information to designers and developers, such as font styles, colors, or specific functionalities.
Testing: Test your wireframes for usability and functionality. Make sure they align with your website's goals and user needs.
Tools: You can create wireframes using dedicated tools like Adobe XD, Sketch, Figma, or online wireframing platforms like Balsamiq, Wireframe.cc, or MockFlow.
Creating a Sitemap:
Define the Purpose: Start by clearly defining the purpose and goals of the website. Understanding the site's objectives will guide the sitemap creation.
List Main Sections: Identify the main sections or pages that will be part of the website. These could include the homepage, about us, services, blog, contact, etc.
Hierarchy: Organize the pages hierarchically. Determine which pages are top-level (main navigation) and which are subpages (linked from top-level pages).
Content Flow: Think about how users will navigate through the content. Ensure a logical flow from one page to another.
Wireframe Integration: Consider the layout and content placement for each page in your sitemap. This will help in the wireframing stage.
Visualize the Sitemap: Use a tool like Lucidchart, draw.io, or even pen and paper to create a visual representation of your sitemap. Each page should be represented by a box or shape, and lines indicate the connections and hierarchy between pages.
Remember that both the sitemap and wireframes are meant to serve as guides and blueprints for your website design and development team. They help ensure that the structure and layout of your site align with your goals and user expectations before you move on to the more detailed design and coding phases.