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Role of URLs (Uniform Resource Locators) in Ranking

by admin | in SEO

URLs are prime ranking factors. A proper URL structure improves a website’s rankings and makes it more user and search engine friendly. So, use it as a starting point to empower your website.

Here are a few technical aspects (URL structure) that should be included in your SEO:

  • Keep your URLs simple – Keep your site’s URL as simple, logical and readable as possible. Complex and too long URLs can confuse users as well as search engines. (Tip – Keep your URLs short and memorable to improve crawl rates.)
  • Use hyphens – Punctuation is important. Use hyphens in your URLs rather than underscores. This is important to gain rankings in SERP. (Google recommends hyphens.)
  • Consider URL case – Developers often ignore this concept. You should use lower case version in your URL patterns. (Tip – If you have both the versions on your website, prefer redirection to the lower case URLs.)
  • Avoid using a, an, the in your URL structure – These are known as “stop words” and should not be used in URL structure of your website. So, avoid them.
  • Include keywords – Add keywords or key phrases in URL structure to gain prominence from search engines.
  • Use robots.txt – Use robots.txt to stop web crawlers to crawl certain pages of your website. This file also helps you to improve the experience of web crawlers.
  • Use Webmaster tool – Use Webmaster tool to check manual actions, HTML improvements and duplicate titles.
  • Session Ids – Avoid using session Ids in your URLs. You can use cookies instead of session Ids.
  • Redirections – Never use too many redirections because it may confuse users as well as search engines.
  • Avoid keyword stuffing – Some optimisers stuff their keywords in URLs, which is a bad practice. So, keep your URLs logical.
  • Avoid parameters – Always avoid unnecessary URL parameters to keep your URLs clean and clear.

So, follow these URL structure rules to strengthen your website’s architecture.

Quick facts:

  • Pages that use URLs with keywords often rank higher.

Quick tips:

  • Use hyphens to separate words for readability.
  • Use Open Site Explorer to research backlinks, identify top pages, view social activity, and analyse anchor text.
  • A URL should always be shorter than 2083 characters.
  • Use actual words in URLs rather than long ID numbers.
  • Session Ids can create massive amounts of duplication, avoid it.
  • Trim unnecessary parameters.
  • Avoid using high number of slashes in URLs.

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