There is a part of the website that is at the same time one of the most highly visible and overlooked parts of the website. This part of the website, which is frequently neglected, can have a big impact on not only how well a website ranks in Google and the other search engines, but also has a big impact on the likelihood of a person following a link to your website. No search engine optimization analysis is complete without attention to this often neglected part of the website. Like many search engine optimization tips, this Google search engine optimization technique impacts both the person using your website as well as the search engine spiders and robots. When this part of the website is properly optimized, people will be more likely to click on your link when it appears in the search engines, and Google will rank your website better as well. This SEO tip deals with the site structure – the URL (uniform resource locator) of the webpage.
Have a Simple to Understand URL
A simple to understand URL will convey the content information for a web page easily. Here are two example URLs to looks at – the first is SEO friendly, the second is not:
If you were shopping online for Nike cross trainer shoes, you would feel more confident clicking the first URL as opposed to the second. As you look at both addresses for the web page, one communicates the content information for the page very clearly and the other does not.
Use keywords and key phrases as the names for your web pages and also the folders / directories on your website. In the first example above, the brand name is used as the directory name and the model of the shoe is used as the page name. This provides a way to include those valuable key words not only in the page itself, but also in the file structure of the website.
How to use SEO URLs to improve your Google rank:
- Use keywords in the name of the files and directories on your website.
- Use file / directory names that are specific to the contents of the page.
- Use file / directory names that give enough information to be helpful to the people using your website.
What to Avoid:
- Using file / directory names that are not relevant to the contents of the page.
- Generic file / directory names like home, page, or untitled.
- Using file / directory names that are too long to be helpful for the people using your website.
It is much easier to implement this when a site is designed from the ground up than it is to implement the SEO URLs when the website is laid out like the second example above. Dynamic URLs may be re-written as static ones to make them SEO / Google friendly URLs. If you need to change the file structure / file names on your website, make sure you use search engine friendly redirects (301 redirect) so that the search engines know to update their records for your website. URL rewriting and redirects are advanced techniques that you will need to use your webmaster or web host to properly implement. This situation, changing URLs, is one that brings to mind the old expression, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Review the file / directory names in the URLs on your website and determine if they are optimized for people and search engines visiting your website. If not, contact your webmaster or web host to begin the process of implementing SEO URLs on your website to improve your rank in Google. If you haven’t already done so, be sure to include optimizing title tags and meta tags in your on-page website optimization.