The URLs on your website have the potential to help or hinder your SEO. If you are still using basic URLs without keywords, product or service names, and other factors included, your business is losing out to the competition. Improve your URLs so they are SEO friendly, well-structured, and keyword inclusive. With this simple change your business may see big boost in your SEO rankings.
Users Benefit from Better URLs
A well-structured URL makes use of the best keywords for your site and will boost your SEO. Even though URL structure is not a major ranking factor, it still has the potential to move your page up in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
Clear, concise, and effective URLs benefit your consumer because they are:
Concise and Easy to Read
Easy to Share Across Social Media Platforms
Easy to Remember When Speaking About Your Site
Definitively Associated with a Specific Page
Likely To Impact The Decision Making of Searchers
As the average internet user gets more well-versed in online search, identification of the URL is a way a user determines a page’s relevance with a quick glance. This recently discovered phenomenon, called domain bias, covers “a user’s propensity to believe that a page is more relevant because it comes from a particular domain” (International Conference on Web Search and Data Mining). By properly naming your URLs, you are able to keep your site relevant to the consumer as well as the search engines.
The Basics of URL Structure
The term URL standards for ‘uniform resource locator’ and is simply a webpage address. The first part of a URL is made up of the domain or subdomain name of the site. This is your site’s domain name, like http://www.mediamadefresh.com.
The second part of the URL is specific to a unique post or page on the website. For the typical website, it may include something such as www.mediamadefresh.com/about-us. While this URL indicates the topic of the page, it does not have any SEO value.
What Keywords Should You Use for Your SEO Friendly URL?
Every page of your website should have a target keyword. By definition, a target keyword, is defined as “the primary term that search engines will use to categorize and identify the page.” The target keyword needs to be relevant to your page’s content. Be sure the term you select is:
Tied to Your Industry. For example, if you are a lawyer the terms you want to start with are common to your business. These may include: estate law, estate lawyer, and estate attorney.
Popular Among the Search Engines. Once you’ve considered the terms you’d like to include, search in the Google Keyword Planner for their popularity in the search engines. You want a word that is searched. Pro Tip: If you provide a service that is geographical, be sure to narrow down searches to those conducted in the region you serve.
Low In Competition if You Wish to Rank Highly. Your site has a better chance of a higher rank is your fight to compete against less popular keywords. For example, the word ‘lawyer’ has more competition than ‘estate lawyer.’
Writing Your SEO Friendly URLs
After you’ve selected the appropriate keyword for your page, you are on your way to writing a URL. If you apply this set of rules to every page, you will likely see a jump in your rankings.
Use the keyword in the URL. If your keyword is “social media management” then your URL should include that exact phrase. For example, your URL for your social media page would start with or include: www.mediamadefresh.com/social-media-management
Make the URL match the page title. The URL should reflect the title, and therefore the content, of the page. The title of your page and the structure of the URL should align. For example, if the page title is ‘About Us’ the URL should include ‘About Us’ not ‘About Our Company’.
Get rid of numbers and automatic labeling. This is especially prevalent in blog posts where the URL assigned to the post is a random string of letters and numbers. Be sure you correct this before making a page live. It appears confusing, is difficult to share, and has no SEO value.
Eliminate unnecessary words and leave out stop words. Long URLs don’t cause problems with search engines but they do cause problems with your users. Shorter URLs are easier to share and remember. You can cut out words around your keyword that aren’t required to understand the post. Words that can often be eliminated are, ‘to’, ‘that’, ‘an’, ‘a’, ‘and’, ‘such’, and other stop words. Search engines often filter out stop words.
Don’t include special characters. Special characters cause links to break. This creates problems with your URLs that may take some time for you to notice. If you use & on your site, spell out the word in your URL. If you don’t know what characters are allowed, here is a comprehensive list of safe and unsafe characters from Perishable Press.
If you use these practices to create a custom URL that is also SEO friendly, you will see results on your page. Not only will your page rank better on search engines, it will get more attention from discerning users.
About Media Made Fresh
Media Made Fresh is a full-service marketing agency that provides clients with a complete range of digital services. From creating SEO friendly URLs to long-term brand management, we help our clients build businesses. Our team takes a collaborative approach to consulting and believes in long-term relationships. Meet the objectives of your brand or business with the help of Media Made Fresh. Schedule a consultation today.