URLs that are well optimized play an important role when it comes to the user experience and the optimization of a search engine. Many variables are considered before the search engines come to their final decision, and the URL is one of those variables. Just like the title of the pages, URLs help in describing the web page to potential visitors and search engines, hence they need to be accurate, well-structured, and enticing. Keeping that in mind, here’s a list of things you can do to create SEO-friendly URLs.
1. Your URL Must Explain Your Content
Whoever visits your web page should be able to guess what type of content they will most likely find inside, just by reading your URL. To achieve that, you need to include a word or a phrase that accurately describes and is relevant to the web page’s content.
2. Your URLs Must Also Include Keywords
You should use at least one keyword to optimize each web page. Plus, this keyword needs to be in your URL as well. Moreover, it is crucial to place the important keywords towards the beginning of your URL, since search engine spiders don’t pay attention to the words that are at the URL’s end. Make sure that you don’t overuse the keywords because search engines know when keywords have been stuffed in and can penalize the website because of it.
3. To Separate Words, Use Hyphens
For a better search engine optimization and user readability, it is advised to always use hyphens when it comes to separating words. Google suggests that instead of using underscores in your URLs, use hyphens instead. This is because words that have a hyphen between them are considered as separate words. After all, that hyphen is seen as space. On the other hand, words connected with an underscore will be viewed as a single word.
4. Your URL Must Be Made Up of Lowercase Letters
Using a capital letter for your URLs is a bad idea. Search engines can decipher from lowercase and uppercase letters in the URLs, and this can result in an identical URL plus loss of the page rank.
5. Your URLs Should Be Short
Your web page’s URL should be descriptive yet brief at the same time. A short URL will be quicker and easier to both read and type. Plus, the fewer words you use, the more attention every word gets from the search engine spider. Moreover, a lot of the similar words inside a URL will be seen as the stuffing of keywords, hence this might cause the search rankings to drop.
6. Make Use of Static URLs
It is always recommended to use non-changeable and static URLs, whenever you can. Static URLs stay constant with every page load. Plus, stay away from unnecessary parameters, such as ‘&’, ‘=’, and ‘?’, which are commonly used in dynamic URLs. Moreover, it is easier for both search engines and users to read static URLs. However, this does not mean that you cannot include any extra parameters in the URLs that you will post to your social media to keep a track of the marketing data. But stay away from hard coding a dynamic URL directly on your website.
Making use of these practices will help you create an SEO-friendly URL that will increase the rank of your website in the search results plus attract users to your web page. Moreover, it is important to remember that a chief component of SEO and SEO-friendly URLs is its usability. You should always make sure that you approach your website from a user’s perspective. Furthermore, it is also important to remember that search engines often change their rules, hence you should always keep a lookout for any changes that might take place in the SEO world.