If you wants to represent business online, SEO is a most important technique that you can’t neglect. SEO is a process, divided into two part – Onsite and Offsite, to increase website’s appearance in search engine result page. Onsite SEO includes so many steps like keyword research, meta creation, navigation and content optimization, URL optimization. Each steps have their own significance in SEO, but in this post we will discuss more on URL optimization.
Do you know what is URL?
In simple term, URL means the unique address for resource or file which is available on internet. The full form of URL is Uniform Resource Locator. Basically every website have IP address (like 126.96.36.199) to collect information from server which is converted into human readable text.
Common URL forms:
Understand components of URL
http: It is a Hyper Text Transfer Protocol, useful to exchange hypertext or data. [Wikipedia]
www: It is a World Wide Web which is a information system of interlinked or correlated web pages that are accessed via the internet. [Wikipedia]
Domain Name: It is a name or string of the website or blog which indicate ownership over the internet. It is useful to create unique identity on the internet that means only one owner for one domain. [Wikipedia]
TLD: It is a Top Level Domain or highest level in the hierarchy of domain name system. TLD would be .com, .co, .net, .info, .in, .org and much more. [Wikipedia]
Sub-directory: Sub-directory is a folder on server where files are stored. Sub-directory is placed inside the root folder or main directory.
File Name: File name is a name of your file which will be your page name, image name or anything else.
How to Optimize URL for Search Engine and Human:
Search engine and human being likes the website which is constant and easy to remember URL. During URL optimization you have to remember following things to make your website’s URL more lovable for both, Search Engine & User.
Create Clean and Keyword worthy URL
To get a maximum benefits of SEO for your site, keywords should be placed in your website’s URL. It will helps search engine crawlers to index and return it for the appropriate query search. URL should be descriptive and shorten, so whenever user wants to recall the site they can easily. Placing a primary keyword in starting of the URL will help you more because search engine spiders will not give more value to end of the a long URL. Another most important thing is, don’t do keyword stuffing means no repetition of keyword.
For eg. www.xyz.com/about/about.html instead of use www.xyz.com/about/company-xyz.php
Do not pass parameters like ?, % and &. It will not easily describe your page content or title. URL should not contains Capital letters.
Static vs Dynamic URLs
A CMS or web server creates the dynamic URL. When the user request the particular URL, the CMS creates the URL with lots of parameters and useless characters dynamically which is not SEP friendly. The dynamic URL looks like,
That is the reason static URL is best for SEO. With CMS like WordPress, you can change the permalink structure and incorporate your page title or post title in URL.
Hyphens vs Underscores
If we want to separate words, we always use hyphens or underscores. But google considers hyphens as a word separator, so it is suggested to use hyphens instead of underscore.
www.xyz.com/free-seo-tool [This is good]
www.xyz.com/freeseotool [This is not good as it doesn’t look readable]
www.xyz.com/free_seo_tool [This is not recommended]
WWW vs no WWW
This is an initial step when you are doing URL optimization. Both form of website, is valid but confirm that your website always open on one address. So many webmasters forget to fix this issue and therefore your site will open in both cases. When search engine spider see this, it will take both url as a separate URL – means one url is www.xyz.com and another is xyz.com – which cause duplication. The process to fix this issue called canonical process. There are two techniques to do canonical process – 1. by adding rel canonical tag or 2. 301 redirection. So, if you do not have fixed this problem, solve it as soon as possible. Your site must be open on one address either with WWW or without WWW.