Search Engine Friendly URLs

Including key phrases and search terms in your web page URLs

URLs with that include relevant key phrases are commonly referred to as ‘search engine friendly’ (SEF) or ‘SEO friendly’ URLs and having web pages with SEF URLs are of particular value when it comes to search engine optimisation and improving rankings.

The name of a URL is a very important contributing factor when Google crawls websites. There have been many cases where traffic has increased up to 10 times just by implementing this simple change.

Changing your existing URLs to SEF URLs can be a time-consuming process, depending on how you manage your website, however there are some content management systems which will do this for you at the click of a button. After this is done make sure that a 301 redirect is linked from the old page to point at the new page, allowing you to ensure a smooth transition and also ensuring you will not lose any traffic coming from the old indexed pages.

Page content must be relevant to the URL to have the desired effect

Be careful though, when it comes to internal pages be sure that the page name is relevant to what’s displayed on the site as Google cannot be fooled. If you are thinking of taking advantage of this handy tip please make sure its 100% pure white-hat SEO, which basically describes ethical SEO practices that follow the terms of service of the search engine, in this case Google.

If your on-page content doesn’t match the new URL, it will be noticed and may have the opposite effect, essentially you will be giving Google a reason not to rank that page.

Also make sure the URLs are no longer than 3 words as the more you have the less weight these keywords would have when it comes to re-indexing. Also, don’t have keywords that do not have any relationship such as

Choose Dashes (-) over Underscores (_) in SEF URLs

Dashes have more of an effect than underscores as Google will read the dashes as word separators. These words are also case sensitive so it is a good idea not to put the URL name in upper case as most people do not type in upper case.

In conclusion, if done correctly it is a good idea make sure your URLs have keywords in them.

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