The world wide web contains 4.5 billion indexed pages with new pages being added every day (WorldWideWebSize.com). Using SEO keywords in your URL (website address) helps your audience find you through all the “noise” on the internet. Here are a few basic guidelines to creating a more SEO-friendly URL.
Your website address basically tells the world who you are. There are several best practices to setting up SEO-friendly URLs.
Keywords can be tricky. Search engines and most human readers are instantly put off by any website that practices keyword stuffing. But you can definitely include a main keyword in the URL of your blog post or web page. You also want to strategically place your keyword in the:
It’s important that the SEO keyword in your URL appears as a natural part of the content to avoid looking forced or stuffed.
Remember to keep your url short to maximize your keywords. Stay within 50 characters or a three to five word limit. Get the 5 Simple Secrets to Identifying Powerful SEO keywords here.
You’ve decided your old URL just won’t do. It’s a bit risky, but you can change a URL without losing the rankings from the old page.
Use a 301 redirect to tell search engines a page has permanently moved, you want them to drop the old one from their index and index the new one instead. In addition to using proper 301 redirects, you’ll also want to update all page links to point to the new url. And remember to submit the new XML sitemap to your search engine of choice.
It is going to take some time for the search engines to crawl your site and pick up the new site paths.
Tip: Leaving the old sitemap up for a few weeks will help the search engine bots process the 301 redirects and other navigational changes.
Applying these best practices in URL structure, main keyword placement and page navigation can make a huge difference to any business trying to create an SEO-friendly URL. It will be much easier for your target audience to find your content and to connect with your business.
Creating a SEO-friendly URL isn’t the only way to get your content found faster. Our infographic can show you how to make small changes online and get big results.