resources such as web pages, images and files on the Internet.
Search Engines like Google "crawl" the Internet and index all of the URLs
they can find in a directory, that we then use to search for things on the
Like any listing in a phone book or an address book, the easier the
number or address is to use, the more favourable the number/address is.
Search engine indexes are no different.
Make URLs Meaningful
The more meaningful a URL is, the more useful it is around the
Internet, and you create meaning by using keywords.
For example - the URL
versus the URL
Even though the two URLs are almost identical, the second URL uses
keywords related to the page content instead of ID numbers.
The use of keywords is an advantage for two reasons:
It gives people a better idea of what to expect at the end of a
link after reading the URL, which also makes the URL better for
It adds weight to search engine rankings.
Avoid "stuffing" your URLs with keywords however, as not only does it
unnecessarily increase the length of your URLs, the practice of
keyword stuffing is frowned upon.
Keep them Short
Like addresses and phone numbers, the shorter you can make a URL, the
While the URL
is a meaningful URL, and includes useful keywords, the length of the
URL will become a burden.
Just like the benefits of using keywords, shorter URLs make for
easier reading and easier sharing, particularly on social media
platforms with character limits such as Twitter.
Furthermore, tests by some SEO specialists have shown that shorter
URLs also improve the direct traffic to a website1.
Use Hyphens Between Words
There are many ways to handle multiple words in a URL.
YouCouldJoinThemAltogether, but that just makes it look like one long
word, which is not useful for search engines.
Or_you_could_use_underscores, but best practice is
The reason for this is Google. Actually, the real reason is the use
of the underscore in programming, but Google (and now most search
engines) have made this part of the way they index numbers and
Whatever the reason is, it has become universally accepted that
hyphens should be used to separate words in URLs.
Make URLs Lower Case
Consider the URL www.example.com.au/about-us.html versus the URL
Both URLs should point to the same page, but there is a very good
reason for using lower case URLs - some web servers are case
sensitive, meaning that about-us.html and ABOUT-US.html are
interpreted as two different addresses.
When a search engine crawls a URL, it will try both versions of the
address and dependent on the type of web server hosting the website,
it will index the results differently.
You could either end up with a search engine resolving the two
versions of the same URL as being two different pages, or, the search
engine will resolve one version and see the other version as a dead
In either case, the result is poorer Search Engine rankings that what
could otherwise be achieved by using lower case URLs.
Use HTTPS URLs
In mid-2014, Google announced that a small Search Ranking boost would
be given to HTTPS URLs. HTTPS is the secure version of HTTP
(Hypertext Transfer Protocol). Using HTTPS rather than HTTP allows
web browsers and web servers to communicate to each other with an
added layer of security and encryption.
While recent tests by various Search Ranking professionals are
showing that, at present, the benefit received by migrating to HTTPS
URLS is so low as to barely be worth the effort, small differences
can have a big impact so it is still worth considering the switch if
you are able to - at the very least you will be providing extra
security for your website visitors, and your website will already be
in line to receive the ranking boost if and when Google does decide
to give HTTPS URLs more weight in their rankings.
After almost 20 years providing content management systems we understand
that website administrators generally don't know the first thing about
page URL's, and that's why the iASP™ content management system
takes care of most of the considerations above automatically.
If your current solution does not support this level of control please
contact us to arrange a no obligation
demonstration of the iASP™ platform.
While your page URLs may not be the number one priority when working on
your website, a few simple considerations can make a huge difference to