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I would like to select the best SEO friendly URL format for my WordPress based picture site. But I am not sure about the impact of SEO in the following formats. In other words I want a better format to help me from duplicate URLs problem.

www.example.com/picture/title-{Unique_ID} or www.example.com/picture-{Unique_ID}/title

Or let WordPress add numbers on the end to avoid dupes e.g www.example.com/picture/title-2

I am in the urge to put Unique ID or any number to prevent from the duplicate of URLs and not for any other feature as this site does with Unique ID.

By the way do search engines consider www.example.com/title-2 more weight compared to using just www.example.com/title-2?

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3 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

If I were you, I will choose the shortest URL to easily remember it (for you and your visitors). And if you want to put unique id at the end of the URL, you can do it.

If it's not important to you to distinguish pages and pictures in URLs, you can choose this kind of URL for images: www.example.com/imageTitle-{Unique_ID}.

Otherwise, the following solution seems to me good: www.example.com/picture/imageTitle-{Unique_ID}.

For SEO purposes, try to put keywords in URLs with the imageTitle variable but always choose keywords regarding the image.

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Thank you @Zistoloen what u say about letting the wordpress to name the duplicate urls (same picture in our case) ?? Still the search engines treat them as duplicate urls or something?? –  Felix Feb 22 '13 at 14:04
    
@Felix: The idea is to have one URL for one picture to avoid duplicate. If you have two pictures about the Eiffel Tower, you can choose these URLs to access them: www.example.com/picture/eiffel-tower-1 and www.example.com/picture/eiffel-tower-2. In that case, you put keywords in URLs for SEO and you avoid duplicate URL and you have one URL for each picture. Search engines will be able to find two URLs by themselves. Moreover, Wordpress associates each picture you upload to one URL, so no problem of duplicate. –  Zistoloen Feb 22 '13 at 14:11
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Basically you should always consider Google's one aim is to provide most relevant content to it's users - so "user friendly" and SEO-friendly are very close to each other. Once you start trying to optimize for search engines too much, Google might find it suspicious and you might even get punished.

That said I have to add there there are actually ways to optimize images especially for SEO - and yes, it might be a bit time consuming: a) not only name the URL of the page showing the picture but also the file itself meaningful. Something like "DSCN000745.JPG" is less attractive to search engines than "paris-eiffel-tower-07.jpg". And then again also this little bit of SEO-friendliness is basically related to human-friendliness since users uploading or downloading such a file will already understand from the file name what to expect from the image.

And then back to the page-URL question: I would always prefer example.com/picture/eiffel-tower-ID over example.com/eiffel-tower-ID. The second URL might be shorter and therefore "eiffel tower" might get ranked higher, but the first longer URL puts your pages ("eiffel-tower-ID") into the right context ("pictures").

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If you can avoid numbers in the URL, it is better for users. When users see a full URL (like posted into a forum) they appreciate having the slug in it to let them know what it is likely to be when they click on it. Having id numbers in the URL reduce the click through rate a small amount. Users seem to appreciate descriptive, but uncomplicated URLs.

If you put ids in the URLs, try to put them near the beginning to avoid problems with URL truncation, as described in this question: SEO : urls : best place for the id

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Actually i am looking for a seo friendly format than user friendly because there will be more number pictures in same title. For instance Paris tower, there would be more number of pictures in that name and naming them differently would be very tough and time consuming. So you have any suggestion from seo perspective? –  Felix Feb 22 '13 at 14:01
    
The user perspective is the SEO perspective. Keywords in the url may directly help for ranking purposes. Increasing CTR helps rankings. So increasing CTR s the main purpose of friendly urls. –  Stephen Ostermiller Feb 22 '13 at 14:53
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