Increasing-search-engine-visibility-with-optimized-permalinks-and-slugs

For your blog or business website to gain search engine visibility and traffic, certain things need to be put in place. Some of those things are optimized titles, descriptions, and permalinks (or a slug as some people call it interchangeably). I’ll explain the difference later on.

Have you ever visited a website and discovered that the title of the page says a different thing from the permalink you clicked on? Quite misleading right? Some people may angrily leave the website immediately.

Remember how good you felt when you search for products or answers on-line and you find a result matching 90% of your search term and the content giving you some of (if not exactly) what you want. That’s one way a website increases search engine visibility, trust, sales, and referrals too.


What is a permalink?

permalink just like the name is the permanent link to a blog post, page or other pieces of content on your website. It denotes the full URL (Universal Resource Locator) of such content, page or blog post, example:

Search engine optimized permalink
https://www.backdesk.ng/web-design

or

Search engine optimized permalink
https://www.feelynx.ng/product/ever-pretty-3/

It is usually followed by what is called a ‘slug’.

 

What is a Slug?

slug, on the other hand, is that part of the URL that comes after the domain name. It’s that part of the URL that explains the page’s content.

Example:

Showing the slug part of a permalink
https://www.backdesk.ng/web-design

The web-design part of the above URL is called the slug.

 


Importance of optimized (SEO-friendly) Permalinks

Permalinks are very important parts of your website as both search engines and visitors use these URLs to index and visit your site.

By default, WordPress uses a permalink structure that’s not SEO-friendly.

These look something like this:

Non SEO-friendly permalink

This is why you need to optimize the title of the page or content and permalink to increase search engine visibility.

They need to be something very descriptive and engaging at first sight. It is supposed to portray its original intent and not be misleading.

For example:

Search result for Digital Marketing Company, Nigeria
Search result for Digital Marketing Company, Nigeria

From the above snapshot, you can see the title of the webpage and description showing what the business does at first glance. This helps Google show your webpage to people who are looking for the services you offer.


Steps to creating SEO friendly URLs (Permalink and slug)

Firstly, it should be as short as possible, while being descriptive. Long URLs aren’t bad, but using a short one makes it easy for Google and your users to focus, especially when they need to have it at their fingertips.

Secondly, avoid using words like ‘a’, ‘the’, ‘for’, and verbs too when the other words can explain the intent.

Thirdly, avoid using an underscore, ‘_’. It connects the words and makes them one word. Instead, make use of hyphens or dashes, ‘-’.

Fourthly, if your site is a blog or news website, there are some ways to construct your URL. Example:

  1. For a blog, the domain name, followed by the post title is the best structure.

 

Permalink structure for blog post

 

2. Then, for a news website or some other websites that you categorize your posts, the category name can come, before the post title:

News website permalink structure

Lastly, change the slug of your webpage to include the focus keyword(s). It’s one of the indicators Google uses to determine what a page is about.


Setting up the permalink structure for WordPress posts

If your website is running on WordPress, the default permalink format isn’t SEO friendly. For a better SEO friendly permalink, you need to take the following steps:

First step: Log in to your WordPress dashboard

Second step: Click the ‘settings’ menu and choose ‘Permalinks

Locating the permalink settings for wordpress

 

Third step: Under the common settings, choose ‘post name’ and that’s it.

Common setting - WordPress permalink

 


Summary

All businesses need search engine visibility, traffic, and referrals to at some point generate revenue and increase their customer base. These things aren’t easy to come by if you aren’t following the right steps. With this post am sure you’ve learned the impact of a good URL (permalink and slug) on your website. Follow these steps if you haven’t and be guaranteed of a well-optimized, SEO-friendly website.


Do you, however, feel this is a ‘too technical’ thing to do and you don’t want to break your business website? Or you do not have the time to do the optimization yourself?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Backdesk offers website maintenance services and we can take care of maintaining your business website, while you focus on your core business activities.

It’s that simple and We’re just a phone call away.

Call: +234 906 916 1331, Email: info@backdesk.ng or Visit https://www.backdesk.ng/website-maintenance to get started!

About The Author

Obinna Akaolisa

Obinna is a Full-stack Web Developer and Digital Marketer. As a creative Brand Identity Developer, he is passionate about promoting the Visual Representations of Businesses, Products & Services, helping them acquire leads & grow revenue.

2 Comments

  1. […] Your website URLs should reflect your title tags. This is because search engines use your URLs to understand the content of your pages. So, make sure your URL is simple and easy to understand. […]

  2. […] making sure your website is visible on search engine result pages (SERP) and ensure your products and services are patronized, installing XML Sitemap on your […]

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