A site map is a model of a website’s content designed to help both users and search engines navigate the site. A site map can be a hierarchical list of pages (with links) organized by topic, an organization chart, or an XML document that provides instructions to search engine crawl bots.
Site map may also be spelled sitemap.
When the site map is for users, it’s just a plain HTML file with a listing of all the major pages on a site.
In the context of search engines, the site map, also known as a sitemap.xml file, helps search engine crawlers index all pages on the site. While a site map does not guarantee that every page of a site will be crawled, major search engines recommend them.
Diagnostics for errors
- See if the problem is out of your hands
The website you wish to access just might not be up right now. To find out, visit Everyone Or Just Me and enter the problematic website’s URL.
If the site tells you that “It’s not just you,” you may as well relax. There’s nothing you can do but wait for someone else to fix their technical problem.
2. Try another browser
Whatever browser you’re using, try something else. There could be a conflict between your browser and the website in question.
In the long term, this isn’t a very satisfactory solution—especially if you’re attached to a particular browser. But it works in a pinch, and you can start doing some research on why that particular site has problems with that particular browser.
3. Try the IP address
Remember that a domain name is just a friendly label. The real location is the IP address. Try entering that in the browser.
But first, you have to get the IP address. Go to Whois Domain Name Lookup, make sure the Who Is tab is selected, and enter the domain name.
After you’ve proved yourself human with a simpler-than-most CAPTCHA-like test, you’ll get a screen with a lot of data. Scroll down to the second section, Geo Information, for the IP address.
4. Alter your hosts file
This file contains specific exceptions to domain names and IP addresses. Perhaps there’s something wrong here—a likely possibility if the domain name failed and the IP address worked.
Use your Windows Search tool to find notepad %windir%\System32\drivers\etc\hosts.
This will bring the hosts file up in Notepad. Search for the site name. If you find it, put a hash tag (#) at the beginning of the line. Save and close the file.
5. Make sure you didn’t block the site
Search for Internet options and open the Control Panel tool. Select the Security tab, the Restricted sites icon, and then the Sites button.
If the site is on the list, remove it.