A URL, or Uniform Resource Locator, is an address for a file or resource that specifies where that resource is, and how to go about retrieving it.

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80
votes
10answers
2k views

URLs: Should I use hyphens, underscores or plus symbols?

Which is better for search engines? example.com/my_cool_page.html example.com/my-cool-page.html example.com/my+cool+page.html
55
votes
8answers
3k views

Should I include “www” in my canonical URLs? What are the pros and cons?

What are the pros and cons of having http://www.example.com/ vs http://example.com/? For example a problem I'm aware of is that if I use a domain without www I can't set a cookie for the current ...
38
votes
7answers
5k views

How should I structure my URLs for both SEO and localization?

When I set up a site in multiple languages, how should I set up my URLs for search engines and usability? Let's say my site is www.example.com, and I'm translating into French and Spanish. What is ...
21
votes
5answers
657 views

Why is it preferable to use paths with slashes instead of query-string variables in a web page URL?

Why is it preferable to use paths with slashes instead of query-string variables in a web page URL?
19
votes
7answers
5k views

Should I use a file extension or not?

I've always wondered about this and never found a good solution. But this question reminded me of it. When I have a URL on my website it can be displayed and accessed any of the following ways: ...
19
votes
3answers
13k views

What does the double slash mean in URLs?

What does the double slash mean ? (I'm not referring to the beginning right after http:). For example: http://www.imywebsite.gov/sectionA/sectionB//section/page/
18
votes
5answers
2k views

Why extensions are hidden in URL?

I know HTML and CSS like a mid level still not a pro. Many times I see in URL extensions are hidden (e.g. .html, .php) but everybody is not doing this. Why do they do that? Is it for security, or for ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

What does WWW do?

To be clear: I am not asking whether or not I should use www in my url, or what the pros and cons are, that topic is well covered. I also wasn't sure if this was a Stack Overflow, Server Fault, or ...
16
votes
5answers
403 views

Are there any technical issues with having an 'internationalized' domain name?

In my language there are numerous characters that are not allowed in the standard domain name. However, most of these can be easily replaced with safe equivalents (mostly dropping accents í becomes i ...
13
votes
3answers
760 views

Should my URLs be lowercase?

According to this blog ("Understanding SEO Friendly URL Syntax Practices") I should change http://example.com/Hello-Dolly To http://example.com/hello-dolly The reasons given are: ...
11
votes
1answer
655 views

How to handle canonical url changes like Stack Overflow

Stack Overflow sites all have pretty urls which include the question title. In the HTML it also have canonical url for that page. I just found out that when I change the question title, the url is ...
11
votes
3answers
940 views

What is the best stucture of SEO friendly URL?

I'm working for a website to convert the website URL to an SEO friendly URL. I plan to use this: mysite.com/category-name/pageid-123-page-name I looked at some similarly categorized, highly ranked ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I use asterisks in URLs?

Are there any reasons I shouldn't use an asterisk (*) in a URL? Background: With asterisks, I could provide these nice and user friendly (or what do you think??) URLs: ...
9
votes
4answers
599 views

What is good URI design?

How should a good URI be designed? What are the factors to consider? What are the pros and cons of the variants? Factors that makes up a good URI Stability over time Short Give the user an idea ...
9
votes
2answers
827 views

Why is there are tilde (~) sign in most university URLs

My university provides a web URL and some hosting space and the URL is like http://homepages.iitb.ac.in/~pritampebam. Almost all universities I've come across seem to use this structure where there ...
9
votes
4answers
495 views

What is the difference between URL's with and without trailing slash

Should we always add the final / or avoid it ? Example /url-without-trailing-slash /url-with-a-trailing-slash/ Does it make a difference?
9
votes
5answers
222 views

Which of these 3 URL-Rewritings are better SEO friendly URLs?

Imagine my current flat-file no-CMS website with an URL like http://website.com/en/tomato. This is of course very unsexy and could be anything really from tomato soup, tomato the music band, tomato ...
9
votes
2answers
5k views

What is difference between URI and URL

I have read these pages http://www.w3.org/TR/uri-clarification/http://www.damnhandy.com/2007/11/19/uri-vs-url-whats-the-difference/ I know basic about URL,URN,URI! and little on their difference! but ...
9
votes
2answers
886 views

URL paths and their effect on SEO

We are developing a website where there will be two distinct types of content: galleries and photos. It makes little sense to use URL paths like /gallery/photo as some photos can appear in more than ...
9
votes
2answers
791 views

SEO : urls : best place for the id

I would like to know what's the best location for an id in a SEO optimized URL: http://www.site.com/id/slug-title http://www.site.com/slug-title-id What do you think ?
9
votes
2answers
321 views

Where does the URL parameter “?chocaid=397” come from?

In Google Webmaster Tools, I noticed that my front page was indexed two times: example.com/ example.com/?chocaid=397 I know that I could fix this with the use of link type canonical, but I wonder: ...
9
votes
1answer
496 views

Multi Language URLs

I'm building an online store that will be supported in 3 languages: English, Traditional Chinese, and Simplified Chinese. My question is whether or not it is a good idea to make language specific ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Is trailing slash automagically added on click of home page URL in browser?

I am asking this because whenever I mouseover a link to a home page (e.g. http://www.example.com), I notice that a trailing slash is always added (as observed on the status bar of the browser) whether ...
8
votes
3answers
771 views

Is it a problem (e.g. for Google) when my site has no root page?

I have a multi-lingual site, which contains languages in this manner: http://www.example.com/en/ http://www.example.com/de/ http://www.example.com/fr/ To avoid duplicate links, is it ok not to have ...
8
votes
3answers
818 views

why does stackoverflow question urls have the question id before seo friendly 'question'

Take for example this random question Tool or plugin required to show out in which html files a given css selectors is used, notice that the relevant part is /questions/16999. Now, it being possible ...
8
votes
6answers
1k views

Poor Man's Clean URLs vs. Mod_Rewrite

At the company where I work, we're getting ready to design a new web site, and there's some disagreement about how to do clean URLs. Over the past year we've been making small improvements to our ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

What should filenames and URLs of images contain for SEO benefit?

We know that good site architecture usually looks like this: example-company.com/ example-company.com/about/ example-company.com/contact/ example-company.com/products/ ...
7
votes
6answers
576 views

Subdomains or folders?

I'm working on a services type web application and I have to choose how to set up the URLs for the customers. Which solution is better, as a subdomain (e.g.: client.myservice.com) or as a folder ...
7
votes
4answers
224 views

What is the purpose of leading slash in HTML URLs?

I have noticed that some blogs posts have links using a value starting with / in the href. For example: <a href="/somedir/somepage.html">My Page</a> Does the leading / mean the path is ...
7
votes
4answers
560 views

Combine websites without hurting SEO

I have a friend that I'm helping out with some web design. Basically, the guy owns a few businesses that are all complementary of each other and he wants to combine them all into a single site. ...
7
votes
3answers
876 views

Why are YouTube URLs so ugly?

I'm just wondering why YouTube URL is so ugly (i.e unreadable and not friendly to search engines). Why they don't care about SEO? My friend said that it's because they are the top website now. But how ...
7
votes
3answers
216 views

SEO and Changeable-But-Optional URL's

Is there any sort of downside for a URL being changeable? Take any stack exchange question for example. The URL looks something like this: ...
7
votes
2answers
549 views

Are images with non-standard extensions (such as “.ashx”, instead of “.png” or “.jpg”) bad for SEO?

Certain CMS' running on IIS like Sitecore do not give image files appropriate file formats like .png or .jpg by default, but instead link to images as: <img src="/media/Some Folder/EX-IMG.ashx" ...
7
votes
3answers
474 views

Squeezing all the SEO out of a URL as possible

I am working on an ecommerce site, I told our SEO consultant that I plan to make the URL scheme: /products/<id>/<name>. This is similar to Stackoverflow's URLs which are ...
7
votes
1answer
184 views

My website accepts anything infront of www.domain.com

I'm experiencing something very strange. Whatever I type in the browser like for instance: qqqqq.mydomain.com the homepage loads. There is even a URL indexed in google which goes something like ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Are shorter URLS better for SEO?

Many people shorten their URLs. But as per my understanding it creates overhead of extra redirection, other can not guess about the target article with their url, and it should be less friendly for ...
6
votes
1answer
122 views

Process of automating domain registration?

I have a website where users register domain.com/user/username. I'd like to add a feature where users can search for and purchase a domain name that maps back to that URL. I'm not sure how big of a ...
6
votes
2answers
340 views

include full category hierarchy in url or only the “leaf”?

I'm currently redesigning a site that organizes information into categories. Some of these categories contain subcategories (and some of those contain even more subcategories). I'm trying to decide ...
6
votes
2answers
961 views

Canonical URL for a home page and trailing slashes

My home page could be potentially linked as: http://example.com http://example.com/ http://example.com/?ref=1 http://example.com/index.html http://example.com/index.html?ref=2 (the same page is ...
6
votes
1answer
125 views

URL path structure for a website with several directories

I am making a website with several directories that will have a high amount of content. For now I have separated the URLs into categories so that they’re like this: www.example.com/student/ ...
6
votes
1answer
89 views

How can I force Google to show my domain, not my IP?

I submitted a site to Google using their tool. At the time I didn't actually have a domain for the site, so I just used the IP address. Later I bought a domain, but Google still seem to be showing ...
6
votes
3answers
226 views

In terms of SEO, is it better to have a URL broken down by folder, or with dashed names?

I am creating a friendly url interpreter for my website. I have read dozens of similar topics on this site, but none that seem to address my particular situation. What I want to know is if it's ...
6
votes
2answers
299 views

URL strategy for multilingual website [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How can I get search engines to crawl my site and see a localised view of my data? I was wondering what would be the best URL strategy for a multilingual website (for an ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Chrome causing 404's ending with “/cache/[hex-string]/”?

Since the last weeks we see many 404's on our sites caused by Chrome adding /cache/[hex-string]/ to the current page URL. The hex strings we have seen are: e9c5ecc3f9d7fa1291240700c8da0728 ...
6
votes
2answers
149 views

When the canonical page itself changes URL

This is a continuation of the question: How to handle canonical URL changes like Stack Overflow. Say I have the canon URL: questions/11/car <---canonically-linked-from--- questions/11/ What ...
5
votes
3answers
286 views

Why treat these as different URLs?

These are all strictly different urls: http://www.example.com/page http://www.example.com/pAge http://www.example.com/page/ http://www.example.com/paGE/ I get that it conforms to the strict ISO ...
5
votes
3answers
308 views

Clean URL: with or without “?”

Simple question What is better: http://www.example.com/product/123/subpage/456.html or http://www.example.com/product?123/subpage/456 As far as I know they would rank the same SEO wise, but my ...
5
votes
3answers
8k views

Which special characters are safe to use in url?

Which special characters are safe to use in url?
5
votes
4answers
623 views

Benefit of date in URL segments

I was curious about the date in URL segments, is there any SEO point of benefit? For example the following URLs: ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

WWW.yoursite.com or HTTP://yoursite.com which one is futureproof?

http://yoursite.com www.yoursite.com http://www.yoursite.com yoursite.com Which of these would you choose as your favourite to work with, if you were to make a site for 2011 and beyond, which ...