How to design a sitemap: 15 pro tips

Visual sitemapping helps teams throughout the entire website development life cycle. Let's find out in more detail at what stages this is especially useful. Meanwhile, if you wanna now what visual sitemapping actually is, and why it is a great method for web developers, just start with this article about sitemapping in web development

FlowMapp Visual sitemap design tool interface. Website structure

Sitemap design in UX and web development

So, when can you find visual sitemapping useful?

  • 1.

    At the planning stage

    During the website structure planning stage, visual sitemapping allows web developers to get a full picture of the website (identify the relationships between pages and the structure of the pages themselves, as well as define their key elements), which can become a starting point for assessing the scope of work and choosing the right technology stack for the project’s implementation

  • 2.

    At the design stage

    At this stage, visual sitemapping allows web and UX designers to approve the structure of the future website with the rest of the team to speed up development and make it possible for several groups of specialists (for example, designers and developers) to work on the project simultaneously

  • 3.

    At the development stage

    Developers can use visual sitemaps along with a documented website structure. This helps them make it easier to understand what they have to do and how they need to organize dependencies between the individual components of the website

Key steps to create a sitemap

Now, let's explain how the sitemapping process occurs

Visual sitemap tool interface

Define website categories

Think about what type of content should be presented on your website. Get together with your team or client and start brainstorming - the more ideas, the better. By the way, you can save your idea, a moodboard, or the client’s brief in the Flowmapp’s Notes tool. It will allow you to edit all them in the same place where you plan your website information architecture

Add hierarchy

Despite the abundance of options for designing a content hierarchy, the most popular one is still the tree. It is better to form this tree from the top, that is, from the home page, and branches with lower priority pages from it. You can use arrows to define connections between pages. After the structure is ready, you can add screenshots of designs that you like to the page card on Sitemap - to do this, you just need to create a card and click on it to open the editor. Read about tips on how to create best visual sitemaps here

Come up with website content

Now, you can start adding content to the previously defined categories of the sitemap to give it a more complete look. In particular, these can be images, arbitrary text, and elements for performing targeted actions (buttons, toggle switches, etc.)

Refine the sitemap to a full-fledged design

Once you add the content to a sitemap, you can share it with your team: project or product managers, designers, developers, copywriters, or clients

Make sitemap design easier with FlowMapp tool

Among all the popular solutions for visual sitemapping, Sitemap by FlowMapp deserves special attention. Here are its main features:

Page editor

Plan the website’s structure, as well as think through all the information architecture and content in one place. Attach files that relate specifically to each new page

Visual sitemaps tool interface. Page cards, connected by lines

Two approaches to sitemapping

Choose a convenient one: covers, with an ever-growing library, or blocks

Example of hi-fi prototype created using flowmapp ux design tool


Submit comments, remarks, edits, and share access to your visual sitemap to perform the same actions with your colleagues and stakeholders

FlowMapp sitemap tool interface: sharing pop up

User flow

Optimize user flows by reducing the dependencies between pages and refining the whole website’s structure

User flow tool by flowmapp: logical blocks, connected by arrow

Hi-fi prototyping

Improve your sketches and turn them into full-fledged hi-fi prototypes. Use fully customizable templates to save your time; integrate them with those created in the previous version of Sitemap, FlowMapp 2.0

Interface of User flow tool by flowmapp. Logical blocks, connected with each other

Sitemap management

Handle navigation and sitemap management directly in the header

Interface of Visual sitemap tool by flowmapp. Sitemap page structure


Optimize your work processes by prioritizing each new task

Interface of Visual sitemap tool by flowmapp. Sitemap page structure

Sitemap design tool for comprehensive web planning

Read why 300,000 users use FlowMapp in their day-to-day work

Based on review by:

Amy Woolsey
Amy Woolsey

Design & Test

I was impressed with how quickly I’d generate an online sitemap and user flow in one connected place. The team's progress is illustrated by status tags on each area of the site's architecture, making it a visually pleasing and fast way to see progress. Also, it is a free sitemap builder.


Based on review by:

Jorge A. Machado Colon
Jorge A. Machado Colon

Experience Strategy & Innovation

Best UX/UI for best UX/UI designers 🔥FlowMapp website mapping tool is so simple to use. Easy export sitemap to PDF or XML. Their own UI/UX is a best practice case. The sitemap tool is just amazing. Quick and easy to set up while visually powerful.


Based on review by:

Rafal Jara
Rafal Jara

Graphic designer

Speed it 🚀 up.

FlowMapp sitemap design tool helps me organize the website planning process. It speeds up workflow. The website structure map then stays as a complete roadmap for my team.

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