Wednesday WordPress Quick Tips-URL Editing

Welcome to my series of quick tips for WordPress bloggers! Please note that nothing I post here will be for experienced users. Instead, the series is just quick little tips that I’ve come across since moving to WordPress. If you happen to have a random question about WordPress, feel free to send me an email and I’ll do my best to hunt down an answer!

This week’s quick tip…URL editing!

girl with dot com magnetsBy default, most people have the URLs on their WordPress posts set so that they automatically contain the date and the title of their post. It’s a great way to set up your URLs so that they reflect the content of the article but when you’re also trying to write engaging titles, the URL can end up being pretty long.

I wondered for a long time whether it was worth it to take that extra minute to edit the URL so that it was a little shorter. And recently I learned that not only is it worthwhile because the URL will be shorter, it can actually be beneficial for my site!

Words that don’t add any real content like the and with take up a lot of room in your URL. By taking them out, your URL will rank better in search engines. And editing that URL couldn’t be easier.

When you are creating a post, you will see a line of text labelled Permalink right below your title box. Click the Edit button at the end of this line of text. This will open up the entire URL so that you can edit out the words that you don’t need. For example, here’s the URL of one of my recent posts:

http://www.mommykatandkids.com/2012/03/taste-the-goodness-of-the-new-freshly-baked-dempsters-bagels.html

Now, just delete any words that don’t provide any real value, making sure to leave a dash to separate the words that do remain. Here’s what the URL looked like after editing:

http://www.mommykatandkids.com/2012/03/new-freshly-baked-dempsters-bagels.html

Or if you prefer, you can even cut it down to the bare minimum and just leave this:

http://www.mommykatandkids.com/2012/03/dempsters-new-bagels.html

Easy peasy, and now this URL is not only shorter, it’s also more descriptive to Google and other search engines!

Bonus Tip: If you have a word that appears throughout the text but that isn’t actually in your title, you can add it to your URL to increase its SEO impact. So for the above example, I could also add in the word Canada since it helps add value to the URL and it appears throughout my review!

Do you edit your WordPress URLs before publishing?

6 thoughts on “Wednesday WordPress Quick Tips-URL Editing”

  1. wow great tip, I’ve pinned and will try my very best to remember all of the wp info dancing around in my head making me dizzy lol

    1. Tee hee! Hang in there, Jen! I’ve been on WordPress for just over a year and I can’t even believe how much there still is to learn! Just take it one step at a time and you’ll get there! :)

  2. FYI for those that forget about this (like me) there is a plugin that will do it for you. If you search for “slug” you will find a ton of them. That is if you want to add another plugin.

    1. That’s true, Colleen and it’s much better than leaving the URL as is, but a Plugin won’t give you QUITE as much control either. They’re great for taking out those really useless words, but sometimes a good word is still pretty worthless for SEO purposes (like taste and goodness in the above example). A Plugin is a great solution for those that just won’t remember to edit the URL though! :)

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