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If I keep the pattern (index.php?module=test&param=1) will pages be less likely to be indexed then if I use the pattern (test_param_1.html) ?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

I do not believe Google says. It used to be true that test_param_1.html was better than index.php?module=test&param=1 but I do not believe that is the case anymore for Google.

However, if your 2 examples pages are very similar in content then you will want to use a rel canonical on them so Google knows which one is the master. Otherwise your pagerank will be split between the 2.

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+1 the rel canonical should take care of this. –  jessegavin Jul 8 '10 at 20:25
    
Just whatever you do, make sure you get the canonical right; one of our production apps had an error in the canonical tag, targeting the index page instead of the details page, and it took us a while to figure out why we were getting such odd SERPs :) –  JasonBirch Jul 27 '10 at 15:06
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No, URL rewriting has no positive influence on crawling or indexing; oftentimes it can even have a negative effect. For instance, many websites embed all parameters as well as plain text (eg the "title") in the URL when rewriting them, creating pages with many possible URLs (we often even see session-IDs rewritten in URLs...).

We did a blog post on this at http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2008/09/dynamic-urls-vs-static-urls.html

Personally, unless you are absolutely certain that you are able to set it up absolutely correct and that it has a measurable impact on user satisfaction (ignore the search engines for this!), then I would strongly recommend not rewriting URLs at all. We see so many big problems with sites that use URL rewriting that you should really think quite a lot about this before going down that road -- and certainly never do it just for an assumed search engine advantage.

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Would the typical (rewritten) Wordpress URL fall into the 'correct' category? –  Tim Post Jul 27 '10 at 14:34
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Tim, in the ones I've looked at, the WordPress URLs were set up properly. WordPress is generally pretty good with URLs :) –  John Mueller Jul 28 '10 at 19:37
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