I'm working on a site where currently almost all pages have URLs like:


regardless of the underlying directory structure of the site.

For example in that page the breadcrumb is


I'm wondering if the URL should be, from an SEO point of view, reflecting the structure and be like


Does not structuring the URL impact the seo of the page? Or it's only a matter of user experience? Actually the URL is build automatically by the CMS so I'm considering if to change this behaviour to make URL reflect the site structure or it is pointless. You have to consider that this site is not an e-commerce, it's a corporate informational site where new information is released monthly.

2 Answers 2


No, it's not compulsory to match the URL structure with folders.

Generally, these days you see multi-level URL structure which does not represent a physical folder. It is used to categorise the information.

A well-structured website helps users to navigate through the website easily and it also helps with SEO.

Also, note that you shouldn't over do it in simple information website unless it is necessary.

The higher level you go, it may be more confusing to users.

I would say you shouldn't depend on the system, make sure it should generate based on your need and setup accordingly.


no, there is no law or rule or even best practice, that urls should match the folder structure and/or category structure, and, further, breadcrumb structure. An example:

Your folder structure could be:


Your urls structure could be:

  • example.com/category1-product1/ or
  • example.com/category2/product2/ or
  • example.com/product1?cat=1&subcat=3 or
  • example.com/imprint?ref=product1

Note: this urls structure is not native for the folder structure i cited above, but it is possible through usage of url rewrite rules, available for all webservers and CMSs. A nativeurl structure would match the folder structure in the way, like:

  • Folder path: /public_html/index.html
  • URL: example.com/index.html and so on.

Your breadcrumb structure could be:

  • for index.html - Home
  • for category-1.html - Home → T-Shirts
  • for product-1.html - Home → T-Shirts → Bart Simpson Black XXL T-Shirt Unisex

The mainly importent characteristics of these structures in terms of SEO are:

  • are the structures match each other on the for user understandable way? Are they logically consistent? Do they produce many bounces?
  • is googlebot able to crawl the folder structure?
  • Is nothing blocked against crawling?
  • Isn't the folder structure too much nested? Like /publik_html/web667/home/website/english/us/category-1/subcategory-1/produkt-1/
  • Are the file name not too long? Like bart-simpson-black-xxl-unisex-t-shirt-mega-discount-price-only-today.html
  • are urls speaking? can user correctly predict, whether they get expecting information visiting this or that url?
  • how documents are interlinked with each other,
  • how fast can all documents be achieved from the entrance point (not only from the homepage!)

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