If you’re new to SEO, then you’ll need to learn how to optimize your website for search engines. If you plan on optimizing your website, then it is important to understand the use of URL structure for SEO.
Here are some of the best practices for URL structure for SEO:
Lead with Your Domain
The domain name and brand name are the most important words in the URL. They are the first things Google ranks and displays in the search results.
URLs should always visually reflect the brand name–the name of the business or website. The domain name becomes the brand.
Have a Standard Structure
It’s good to keep the URL format consistent across the board to create a standardized look and feel. This way, people will understand where they are on your website after visiting a few pages.
Also, make sure to use the same redirect rules so that users aren’t redirected to different URLs when clicking around your site.
Ensure it’s Readable
It’s a good idea to use words that are easy to read and understand. Ideally, the text should be no longer than five words.
URLs should reflect the content of the webpage and the information that the webpage presents. A URL typically does not include the word “the.” It is only used when the page itself has a title.
SEO experts now recommend including keywords in your URL. It is a good idea to use the URL structure to help users find the information they want and to help search engines find your website.
Including keywords in your URL is a good idea if you can do it properly; that is if the URL still makes sense.
Think of the URL as you think of the search query. The user types in a keyword or a phrase and expects to get a response that’s related to that search phrase.
Separate Words with Hyphens
There’s no rhyme or reason to the underscores, hyphens, and words you place in your URL. Just make sure it is easily read and understood.
The best practice is to use hyphens between all words (except for the domain name) to create a more readable URL. The hyphens also help with the flow of related keywords.
Use Canonical Tags
There are some situations where you cannot include keywords in the URL. For instance, if you redirect to another URL or if you have duplicate URLs, then you should use canonical tags.
Canonical tags basically tell search engines which URL to use when there are duplicate URLs. The canonical tag is basically a hint to the search engine to leverage the URL you want them to use.
There are a number of best practices that you should follow when you’re optimizing your website for search engines, especially when it comes to URL structure. If you do not follow these best practices, your website might be penalized or not appear on Google’s SERPs. By implementing smart and effective SEO strategies, you can ensure that your website is fully optimized and visible.
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