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Best Practices for SEO-Friendly URLs

Search Optimization

Many digital marketers often overlook the importance of URLs when optimizing their websites for search engines. What they don’t realize is that URLs actually play a role in improving SEO and user experience.

In this post, we’ll tell you what makes a well-optimized URL a powerful tool for SEO, and then we’ll go over eight of the best practices for SEO-friendly URLs.

Without any further ado, let’s get the ball rolling!

Why Are URLs Essential for SEO?

Search engines factor many variables into their decision-making process, and URL is among their top priorities.

URLs help describe a web page to both search engines and visitors. Along with the title tag, link anchor text, and the content itself, search engine crawlers use the URL to understand what the content’s all about.

That said, your URLs should be well-structured, accurate, and enticing.

If you’re not sure where to start, you can consult an experienced company specializing in SEO Fort Lauderdale. If you’re willing to take time to learn, however, the tips we’re showing below will definitely come in handy. 

8 Best Practices for SEO-Friendly URLs

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1. Use a Good URL Structure

Before building your website, it’s a smart move to have a URL hierarchy already. You want to make sure that your visitors can get around your site seamlessly without any confusion.

Here are two things to remember: Not all websites follow the same URL structure and there’s no exact rule for determining the best URL structure.

A blog site might have a structure that’s different from an e-commerce site, and a social network’s URL structure will likely differ from that of a government website. It all comes down to the purpose of the website.

While there are no official guidelines in deeming the perfect URL structure, anything that’s simple, logical, easy to remember, and relevant to the page, is always the most ideal.

For your visitors and search engines to quickly understand the connections between each page on your site, you should keep your URL structure as intuitive as possible. After you’ve settled on a URL structure, that’s the time to choose the right URL keywords for each page.

2. Define Your Content

Potential visitors should be able to have a clear idea of what your post is about at first glance by looking at the URL. To do this, make sure that you include a term or phrase that relates to the content of your page.

For example, if someone is searching for information about the best sandwich shops in Florida, a URL like “https://www.tripstodiscover.com/best-sandwich-shops-in-florida/” will likely get them to click on that link.

3. Include Keywords

Keywords are the backbone of SEO, which makes sense that you’d want to sneak them into your URL.  

A good rule of thumb is to place the most important keywords at the beginning of the URL. Search engines don’t really pay much attention to terms toward the end of a URL.

Also, avoid overusing keywords. Crawlers can easily identify keyword stuffing, and if that happens, expect your website to incur penalties.

4. Always Use HTTPS

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The secure version of the HTTP protocol, HTTPS makes your website more credible to users. It gives them the feeling of trust and security, especially when they’re providing personal information or making a purchase with their credit card details.

HTTPS is secured by an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer), which is responsible for encrypting communication between your browser and a website. This makes it impossible for hackers to read any data, even if they manage to trap them.

If you’re only using HTTP for your website, odds are, you’ll lose potential business from tech-savvy users. Put yourself in their shoes - you wouldn’t want to disclose your exact address to a company that doesn’t guarantee security now, would you?

Another reason why you should use HTTPS is that Google prefers websites with SSL. In other words, those who follow the HTTPS protocol have a greater chance of ranking high on the search results page.

5. Keep It Short and Sweet

Your URL should be brief yet descriptive, as it’s much faster to type and read.

The fewer words your URL has, the more valuable it is to search engines, allowing you to rank well. Just be sure to avoid repeating words in your URL, no matter how short it is, as it can still be viewed as keyword stuffing.

As much as possible, stay away from stop words such as a, an, the, and, or, for, of, etc. They don’t need to be in your URL, as they can only make it longer.

6. Separate Words with Hyphens

If you haven’t noticed, there is not a single website that uses space to separate words. Underscores aren’t a good idea, either.

Using hyphens to break words in URL phrases is crucial to both SEO and user readability. As a matter of fact, Google recommends using hyphens instead of underscores. That’s because hyphens are treated as spaces between words, whereas search engines consider words connected by underscores as one word.

7. Focus on Lowercase Letters

Using capital letters is a no-no if you’re optimizing your URL for search engine optimization.

URLs are case-sensitive for everything that comes after the domain name. For instance, if you type YourDigitalResource.com, you can still gain access to our homepage. However, typing yourdigitalresource.com/Blog will lead you to a 404 page instead of our blog page.

8. Be Careful in Using Subdomains

In some instances, subdomains are being treated by search engines as a separate entity from the primary domain. This can leave a negative impact on several aspects of SEO, such as trust value and link building.

Here’s an example for your reference:

Optimized: https://www.yourdomain.com/support

Not optimized: https://support.yoursubdomain.com

Instead of using a subdomain, you might want to go for subfolders - unless you have a specific reason.

Need Professional Help? We’re Here for Ya!

Optimized URLs are just one of the many things that can improve your SEO. There’s also web design, link building, and social sharing - all of which are services we offer here at Digital Resource, among many others.

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If you’re wondering where you can find the best SEO Fort Lauderdale, looks like this is your lucky day. It would be our pleasure to work with you and help you get ahead of the competition through the power of SEO and other digital marketing strategies.

Get in touch with us now to learn how we can bring success to your business.  

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