All the major search engines (Google, Yahoo!, MSN/Live, and Ask) use the XML Sitemaps protocol for getting URLs from websites. Of course they all still use good old-fashioned crawling, but the XML sitemap can be helpful for getting new content indexed quicker and also helping spot errors using other tools the search engines offer. Simply put, if you don’t have an XML sitemap already, we suggest you get one. XML-Sitemaps.com offers a free service that works very well, and you can also download (not free) a version to run on your own server.
As the major search engines all agreed to a protocol (basically Google’s protocol), they also made it easier to let them know when a sitemap has been updated. They let users “PING” them with the URL for the sitemap. This makes it easy to build into software and such, but not necessarily easy to do. So, we thought we’d make it easy to do for you.
XML Sitemap Ping Tool
Just put in the URL of your sitemap, and then we’ll send it on to all 4 search engines in one big swoop. If there happens to be an error, you’ll get an error message.