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SEO Friendly Tips to Choose Best URL

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Guest article by Mr.Vinay from Tech18. This is a gift for all our readers on account of our 3rd anniversary celebrations.

Before we start developing any website or blog, we usually think a lot for URL. What kind of URL we should go for? How many letters long? We get lot of confusions while deciding a best URL. But we usually forget about the SEO part.

SEO Friendly URL

As a webpage developer and kind of SEO optimizer, I would like to say your URL also acts as a SEO keyword for Google spiders. Following are the few tips while choosing a URL for your website or blog or even a article URL inside your blog.

# 1. Short and descriptive URL

What you think about short and descriptive URL? Its very simple! What if you visiting some website like, allaboutyouandmeandmytechnology.com! Can you even read the URL which you are trying to visit! Same thing with Google as well. Treat yourself as a Google who is visiting your site and see what will happen.

According to Matt Cutts in and interview with Stephan Spencer

“If you can make your title four- or five-words long – and it is pretty natural. If you have got a three, four or five words in your URL that can be perfectly normal. As it gets a little longer, then it starts to look a little worse. Now, our algorithms typically will just weight those words less and just not give you as much credit.”

GC Note: Stephan Spencer is a Founder and President of Netconcepts. Matt is Google engineer extraordinaire, head of the Webspam team at Google.

# 2. DO NOT use auto-generated ID and numbers

When a new URL is generated Google visits that link to check the content and provide page-rank to that link. Before it does even Google will check the URL for SEO.

If you are using some auto-generated ID or numbers like

http://www.abcdefgh.com/i?id_sezione=360&sid=3a5e,

will it make any sense? Reader cannot make it out easily about the content inside the article.

# 3. Keyword in URL

Keeping in mind about the auto-generated ID or numbers, it is advisable to have some SEO friendly keywords in your URL. Even Google will search for a keyword in your URL. A normal gets attracted towards the URL which briefs about the article or content inside the URL.
[ad#Google Adsense 468]
GC Note: URL with descriptive keywords drives more traffic as the user tends to click those URL’s.

# 4. Hyphens (-) instead of Underscores (_)

Matt Cutts says,

If you have a URL like word1_word2, Google will only return that page if the user searches for word1_word2 (which almost never happens). If you have a URL like word1-word2, that page can be returned for the searches word1, word2, and even “word1 word2”.

What you think about this Google search algorithm? It is easy to read http://www.gadgetcage.com/2010/08/7-best-sites-to-grade-your-twitter-profile.html than, http://www.gadgetcage.com/2010/08/7bestsitestogradeyourtwitterprofile.html or http://www.gadgetcage.com/2010/08/7_best_sites_to_grade_your_twitter_profile.html

# 5. Case Sensitive

Most of the people use standard lower case URL’s. It is advisable to use lower case URL because if you are using URL’s in upper case and somebody links to your post with lower case URL, both of you might loose Google PR Juice. Avoid 404 error page!

# 6. Avoid multiple parameters

Googlebot may consume much more bandwidth than necessary, or may be unable to completely index all the content on your site if your URL contains multiple parameters.

# 7. Session ID and Sorting parameters in URL

Avoid using any session ID or sorting parameters in your URL as you may get some duplicate URL’s. You will never be knowing how many number of duplications are there with same session ID! Crawlers usually perform some type of URL normalization in order to avoid crawling the same resource more than once.

# 8. Avoid EXE in URL

Google crawler doesn’t crawl disallow the URL having EXE in it. So please avoid using exe.

9. Special Characters

Not all search engines don’t crawl pages with special characters and generated dynamically by cgi scripts. So try to avoid to present your web pages as cgi generated pages.

# 10. Content Friendly URL

Last but not least! Choose the URL with matches your website or blog. Do not choose URL like abcdef.com for technology related site!

URL of any website or a blog should be as simple as possible. The structure should be user friendly so that a reader can identify the content inside the article by looking into the URL rather than just long ID numbers.
[ad#Google Adsense 468×15]
In this article I would be telling you how to make SEO friendly URL structure so that you can rank your blog or website article higher in Google and other search engines.

Are you following all this tips? Like to add some more tips? We would be glad to see your view. Thanks for reading my post.

I am a self made programmer. Co-owner of the Tech18 blog. Very passionate and eager to know new technologies, which made me to step into blogging world. You can find me on FB with user name “vinay gowda”. Follow me on twitter @tech18blog .

37 Comments to SEO Friendly Tips to Choose Best URL

  1. Thank you heaps for this, your article does 2 things for my lowly understanding of blog tech. It gives me the why’s and wherefores of url mechanics and does this by highlighting the implications for creating within the seo environ.

    Right back to near the beginning of my blog I grappled with the word, the concept and gave it my best shot of winding it into a story. It presented a huge challenge to me both semantically and, perhaps more importantly challenging the ethics of 2 of my close friends. They canned me, my post and the sheer audacity I had of resisting their advice that I ought delete my post for in their opinion seo or SEO usages in blog posts was reprehensibly immoral.

    Nevertheless I relented and omitted the offending paragraph largely to win their support back for no less did I need their hugely useful advice.

    I did however manage to keep SEO in the title since the story revolves around a certain CEO of a company, on the basis they sound very similar when one says them out loud: http://www.neverthelessnation.com/2007/05/cluster-ballooning-seo-escapes.html

  2. @Jaydip: Bro try it out. Fire a search for “Chrome-7” and “Chrome_7”. You will find the difference. 🙂 Hope you accept with the point #4 after searching 🙂 TY for your comment buddy 😉

  3. Excellent tips.
    I was not aware of the fact that “-” and “_” are considered as totally different things by the bots. I used to think that both will be equally ignored by the search bots.

  4. It is not easiest work to choose the name of URL, Choosing correct URL name that optimized with keywords is not only helpful for people to understand easily, but it pours heavy traffic from search engines too,Thanking you for excellent write up :)…

  5. You have covered all the important ones, very nice compilation Vinay.

    I would add two more :

    1. Put your important keywords upfront: Put the important keywords in the beginning and the lesser important ones at the end. This is because sometimes, only a few words from the URL is shown under the description snippet in search result pages.

    2. Bring Harmony with the title tag: Creating a harmony between the title tag and the URL helps a ton.

    Example:

    Title – How to Delete Hard Disk Data Completely
    URL: delete-hard-disk-data is better than hard-drive-data-delete

  6. Good tips. I would like to add another one.

    Always use a fixed domain. Google considers http://www.abc.com & abc.com as two different domains. So a 301 Redirect would sort this issue out & give google or perhaps all the search engines that there is no duplicate site but only one fixed site.

  7. Hey buddy 🙂

    Good to start off with guest blogging, as it’s having lots of benefits 🙂

    When it comes to the permalink or “URL” structure of any page, I would like to add 2 more points :

    1. Avoid the usage of stop words like ‘a’, ‘the’, ‘in’,’to’..etc in the URL of the page to improve SEO of that page.

    Doing this manually consumes more time, so for WordPress blogs there is a plugin which optimizes the post url.
    Have a check => http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/seo-slugs/

    2. If you want your website to get listed in the Google News, then each page must have a unique post-id either at the start or at the end of the URL. This is exactly opposite of the 2nd point which you have mentioned, so hopefully edit it and add 😉

    I am glad to see you here Vinay 🙂
    Happy Blogging 🙂

  8. Thanks for pointers. I wasn’t aware as well about the – vs _. I did know that there was a difference but not clear what it was.

    So overall would you recommend keyword1 and keyword2 or keyword1 & keyword 2? Not sure about wither I should use and or &.

    Anyway, thanks!

  9. Yup your url should be free from any sort of special characters & preferably should be kept as simple as possible or the search engines might think you are spamming the url.

  10. Great little article. I was reading an article on SEOmoz and it said the longer your URL the more negative correlation it has. Therefore, the best url structure i have found is /basically your-keyword-here/ with not too many dashes. I would not put more than 3 or 4 dashes in a URL.

    Not only is excessive dashes bad for SEO its awful for users who may want to type in a URL.

  11. This article has provide us basic seo tips. There is no doubt in off page seo url has basic importance. If you want to get good serp position in specific keywords it should be part of your domain url. Your article has inspired me much.

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