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How to Create SEO Friendly URLs

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Are URLs Important For SEO?

According to a Backlinko study, URL length, URL path, URL string, and keywords found in URLs are amongst Google’s top 200 ranking factors.

What Are SEO Friendly URLs?

An SEO-friendly URL is just a fancy way of saying that you have edited the URL of a page (ex: https://boopdigital.com/search-engine-optimization/) to make sure it is compliant with best practices for Google search engine crawlers. Read below for our easy tips!

How To Make a SEO Friendly URL

  1. Ideally your website should be a top level domain. This means that your website has a .com or .ca type ending rather than a less popular speciality one like .biz or .portfolio. Having a top level domain doesn’t actually affect your rankings in search engines, but it does affect your trust factor for real humans (and thus makes your site more click-worthy in search results).
  2. Make sure your domain is on a secure server (HTTPS://). If your site is on an insecure server (HTTP://) then visitors will see a warning screen before they can go to your site. Most will not carry onward to your site. Having your site on the insecure server will also affect your ability to rank high. To get a https:// address if you don’t already have one you will need to contact your hosting company and ask them to install a SSL certifcate to your site.
  3. Make sure your URL length is between 50-60 characters long. Shorter URLs are better for SEO. Anything above 80+ characters is likely to negatively affect your ranking.
  4. Make sure to have max around 3-5 words in the URL. Keep in mind if you are going to go about changing your URLs to make them better optimized for SEO, then you need to set up a redirect for the old version of the URL to direct people to the new version of the URL. Once a version of a URL exists, it always exists for Google. So to avoid broken links, you need to set up a redirect.
  5. Make sure your URL is readable. You want to make sure that your URL is attractively worded enough to be clicked. If your URL has a bunch of random letters, numbers, and symbols it is far less likely that someone is going to click on it.
  6. Use hyphens instead of underscores. This is the preferrered syntax by Google!
  7. Only use lowercase letters. Sometimes uppercaser lettering can cause 404 errors on certain servers, so to avoid mistakes, just use lowercase.
  8. Remove stop words if it makes sense. Stop words are ‘filler words’ like a, an, or, but. You can use them if you like, but if you can make the URL readable without filler words then leave them out.
  9. Only use safe characters. There are certain symbols that cannot be used in URLs and are considered unsafe. This includes a blank/empty spaces and the following symbols: < > # % { } | \ ^ ~ [ ] `
  10. Limit your URL structure to 1-2 folders. Website platforms tend to create folders and sub-folders (upon sub-folders) of content to keep things organized, but this can create really long URLs. Think of a ‘folder’ as the slash (/) in a URL. For example you might have a URL like this: www.yourwebsite.com/category1/subcategory2/topic1/etc but ideally you want to shorten it to 1-2 slashes only.
  11. Target 1-2 keywords for the page. Position these keywords near the beginning of the URL. You should not just shamelessly stuff keywords into your URL. It should still make sense, and it should still be relevant to the page. This is why you need to actually create valuable content/posts for each group of related keywords that you want to rank for.
  12. Do not repeat keywords (or any words) in the URL. Google will penalize you for repetition.