The URL structure is one of the most fundamental – and overlooked – parts of SEO. Despite this, optimising URL structure is simply more of a “can do better” part of SEO as opposed to a critical part of SEO campaigns, keywords and content still hold that title. But there’s definitely no harm in optimising your URL structure for SEO!

Readable URLs

Your URLs should be readable by humans and give users an idea about the content they are about to experience. Something like “example.com/blog/best-tips-for-designing-websites” is easily readable by humans and gives a clear understanding of the content: it’s a blog with tips for designing a website. Compare this to something like a BBC news link: “bbc.co.uk/news/business-45776288” This URL shows it’s a news article relating to business, but that’s all. You should always try to give users a preview of the content via the URL in the same way you do for your SEO title and meta description.

Keywords in URLs

Google gives a small boost to results which have the keyword in the URL and it shows that your content is relevant to the searcher. Plus, research has shown that users look to the URL when deciding which result is more relevant to them and which result to click. In addition, if someone shares your content through the link and can’t use anchor text, the presence of your keyword adds value to the link.

Exclude Parameters

Parameters in a URL serve no purpose to the user and just makes your URL look clunky and contain irrelevant information. It’s best to either remove them or rewrite them as text – at least for the snippet slug. Some parameters can cause issues such as keyword cannibalization – when two pages of content are similar, and a search engine becomes confused. You can use Google Search Console to define that these pages with parameters are not to be crawled. Parameters also mean your URL is needlessly long, which brings us to our next point:

Keep URLs Short

Short URLs are much better than longer URLs. This includes pretty much everything. Longer URLs will shrink in the SERP and may show unimportant parts of your URL. Shorter URLs are also better for user experience. It doesn’t fill the user’s URL bar, it makes it easy to be shared (copied and pasted) and generally, a shorter URL means you are trying more to convey only important and relevant information to the user via the URL. An easy way to keep URLs short is to remove stop words. These are words such as “the” and “for” which search engines have been programmed to ignore when indexing and retrieving web pages.

Blue Whale Media

Blue Whale Media are the local experts for SEO, utilising various white hat SEO strategies to get your website to the top of search engine results. From keyword research and writing SEO-friendly content for your website, we can do everything. Call us today on 01925 552050 or use our form below!

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