by Articles, Tips & Tricks

Optimize URL Structure For Search Engines-Top Tips and Tricks

optimize-url-structure

If you want your web pages to rank high in search engine result pages, then you should make sure your URL is properly optimized. This is one of the important on-page optimization technique.

Why We Need To Optimize URL?

First reason to optimize URL structure is to increase search engine rankings which will bring us free natural traffic. Secondly human readable URL structure can increase your clickthrough rate. People click more on readable URLs as they give us idea about the actual content on the web page.

Here are top 8 tips that you can employed in every single web page URL you have in your website.

#1 Convert Dynamic URL To Static URL

You should avoid using dynamic URL and stick with static URL. There are a few reasons for this.

Here is the example of dynamic URL:

http://www.example.com/product.php?category=media&title=twitter

From the example above, you can tell that a dynamic URL is having characters such as “=”, “&” and “?” in the URL. In general, dynamic URL content gets indexed very slowly and some search engines might have problem indexing it. Besides, dynamic URL is not readable and it will lower the clickthrough rate in search engine results.

So the above mentioned dynamic URL can be converted to static URL as follows:

http://www.example.com/product/media/twitter/

#2 Separate Multiple Keywords In URL Using Hyphens (Dashes)

Separating multiple keywords in URL using hyphens will make it easier for search engines to understand your URL structure and exactly when it starts and when it ends for each keyword.

http://www.example.com/duplicate-content/

#3 Limit The Number Of Words In Your URL

Search engines limit the crawling if the page URL contains too many keywords. Generally keywords not beyond 10 in your web page URL is the best. Search engines always prefer short and descritive URLs.

#4 Keep Your URL Structure Unchanged

You should keep in mind that once your should keep your URL stable and remained unchanged once it is created. It means you should take care of URL structure optimization when you setup your website or blog at the beginning.

If you would like to alter the URL structure at the middle, then the best idea is to redirect your old URL to new URL. This will ensure that Google and other search engines are able to transfer your link juice and PageRank from old URL to new URL without hurting your site.

#5 Keep Only Keywords In Your URL

We should keep only keywords in URL. And remove all numbers and words such as “the”, “of”, “in”, “your” and etc. If we keep those redundant words in the URl, it will dilute your keyword density in the URL and possibly make our URL exceed the length of 10 words.

#6 Use One Version Of URL To Access Your Web Page

Multiple version of URL for the same web page is considered as duplicate content in the eye of search engines. Search engines treat each URL uniquely. Each URL is an independent content even if the URL is just single character different from another URL. For example:

http://example.com
http://www.example.com

Although these 2 URLs are pointing to the same home page, search engines treat them differently. So only use one version of the URL and stick to it.

You can use 301 permanent redirect to forward your home page URL to a preferred domain. For example, you can forward example.com to www.example.com. Or simple use Google Webmaster Tool to set the preferences for www or non-www URL version.

#7 Keep The Number Of Subfolders In Your URL To A Small Number

Always keep the number of subfolders in your URL to a small number.

http://www.example.com/blog/wordpress/plugins/twitter/twitter-tools/

The above URL is using 5 subfolders and this is really a bad idea of URL structure. Keep your content up to 2 or 3 subfolders deep in URL and separate multiple keywords with dashes.

#8 Keep Your Primary Keyword Near To The Starting Point Of Your URL

You should put your primary keywords near to the starting point of your URL. Search engines think that words at the left hand side of the URL are the most important keywords. Look at the example below:

http://www.example.com/duplicate-content-hurts-website/

Conclusion

In conclusion, be careful while setting up new domain or URL structure of each blog post. Dont’ underestimate the power of URL structure. Optimized URL structure will give you an edge in the search engine rankings.

Please share with us if you have any other URL optimization tip.

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