ClickHelp User Manual

Documentation Portal Sitemap

Sitemaps are great SEO tools that allow search engines to discover all your content and index it. Basically, a sitemap is an XML file that contains all the URLs that need to be indexed. 

Without a sitemap, the search engines will index only the pages that have links from other pages that have already been indexed earlier. Once you get a sitemap and give it to a search engine, all your publicly available content will be indexed unconditionally (as allowed by the robots.txt file, of course).

ClickHelp automatically generates sitemaps files for all public publications.

Some documentation portals can be quite big and contain multiple publications that need indexing. In such cases, multiple sitemaps are created - one sitemap file for each public user manual. A sitemap index file is used to unite all the sitemap URLs in one place. ClickHelp automatically generates a sitemap index file with all the sitemaps listed. 

Learn how to submit sitemaps:

Submitting a Sitemap to Google Search Console

To be able to submit your sitemap or sitemap index file to a search engine, you need to be the confirmed owner of your online portal in the webmaster tools of that search engine. This needs to be done only once per portal by using the integration with Webmaster Tools.

  • Open your ClickHelp Author Dashboard and go to Tools → Portal Settings → Content Search → Sitemap and find the link to the sitemap index file there. Copy only the part after your portal link without a slash.
    Find the link to the sitemap index file in the Sitemap section of the Portal settings
  • Open Google Search Console and click Sitemaps in the left-hand navigation bar.
    The Sitemap button in the Google Search Console 
  • Paste that part of the sitemap link to the text field and click Submit.
    Paste the part of the sitemap link to the text field

Submitting a Sitemap to Bing Webmaster

  • Open your ClickHelp Author Dashboard and go to Tools → Portal Settings → Content Search → Sitemap and find the link to the sitemap index file there. Copy the whole link of your sitemap.
  • Open Bing Webmaster and click Sitemaps in the left-hand navigation bar.
    The Sitemaps button in Bing Webmaster
  • Paste the link of your sitemap to the text field and click Submit.
    Paste the link of the sitemap to the text field

When this is done, the search engine will check the sitemap index file from time to time to see if there are new topics to index in any of the publications. This will ensure optimal indexing of your online documentation.

Deleting a sitemap doesn't mean that your content will disappear from search engines. A sitemap just helps the search engines to find and index your portal pages faster. To prevent the whole portal or separate topics from appearing in search results, use robots.txt