5 Tips To Create SEO-Friendly URLs

Tuesday, July 7th, 2015

CODINGURLs remain an important part of your SEO setup, as well as an important component of getting your content shared and well received. Balancing the two – readability and SEO grunt – is the key to creating the best possible URLs for your website. Most CMS platforms will automatically generate a URL based on your settings and site structure, but altering it slightly yourself can take it to the next level and maximise the SEO benefits.

Keep it simple. Long URLs are more difficult to share on social media platforms such as Twitter, and while there are sites that will give you a contracted version, this means you miss out on the link speaking for itself inside your post. Keeping it simple and succinct encourages people to share.
Example is: www.yoursite.co.nz/checked-your-mobile-stats-lately-and-why-it-matters/
Better as: www.yoursite.co.nz/why-mobile-statistics-matter/

Remove breakable bits. Likewise, once you’ve encouraged someone to share your link and give you a quality backlink, the last thing you want is for it to become broken and result in a 404 page when someone clicks it. This can happen when there are dynamic parameters in the URL such as ID numbers, dates or parameters on how the content is displayed (ie, in a list or a gallery). Create simple, strong URLs that won’t change much over time. This also applies to the odd characters that get inserted automatically in place of punctuation marks – read through to ensure that your URLs are fully alphanumerical if possible.
Example is: www.yoursite.co.nz/articleid?=244354-ABC-mobile-statistics/
Better as: www.yoursite.co.nz/mobile-statistics/

Make it readable. As much as possible, the title should be readable on its own to give a good overview of the article. This will mainly be visible on search results pages as well as when it’s shared on social media, so it’s a good chance to summarise the post in a way that may be slightly different from the title, but still very much on topic and relevant.
Bad: www.yoursite.co.nz/resources-category-mobile-survey-new-zealand-2015-matters/
Better: www.yoursite.co.nz/key-2015-new-zealand-mobile-statistics/

Use a single domain for links. Ideally, you’ll have all your blog posts (i.e. most likely your most frequently linked-to material) on one single domain. This helps strengthen your link base and backlink profile rather than having it diluted.
Example is: blog.site.co.nz/new-zealand-mobile-statistics/
Better as: www.site.co.nz/new-zealand-mobile-statistics/

Include keywords, but carefully. Keywords in URLs do help with SEO traction, but it’s not worth including them at the cost of readability. If you can find a way to include a keyword do so, but otherwise leave them out.
Example is: www.yoursite.co.nz/how-to-make-the-most-of-mobile-visitors-to-your-site /
Better as: www.yoursite.co.nz/seo-optimisation-for-mobile-traffic/

Additional resources on creating strong URLs:

Creating solid URLs is extremely important for SEO, as well as for encouraging people to share your website and

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Katie is a lover of words and art, born and raised in Christchurch. With a BA in English and Japanese, she’s happiest tapping away at her keyboard writing copy or articles, or else working on the latest illustration. To balance the creative side, Katie is also very motivated and a bit of a perfectionist, which helps with her SEO duties. Although her hobbies could probably be described as art, art and more art, she also enjoys long walks, good friends and travel.

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