There are two important points around URLs that are relevant:
- Keywords in the URL don't matter much at all for SEO right now. Having the year in the URL isn't going help you rank better.
- Stable, unchanging URLs are best for SEO. Having the year in the URL makes you change the URL every year.
Having the year in the URL is not good for SEO. This is a common problem for conference websites. If there is a yearly conference, it is tempting to create a separate URL for the website of the conference each year:
Instead, it is better to put the current information at the root URL and then archive it once the next year's site is created:
Common pages such as
schedule.html that are used every year don't need to be redirected from the root, but any unique pages for that year should be redirected. For example if you had a 2018 page called
bob-smith-keynote-speaker.html you would now redirect that page into the 2018 directory.
This allows links created to each year's conference boost next year's conference. With a year in the URL, back links tend to get distributed between the different years. Your current year looks like the weakest and least popular page on your site to search engines.
In your case you should use the URL
/best-x and leave it stable from year to year. If you want to archive last years version so that users can view it, move it to
/best-x-2019 when you update it.
It sounds like you need to communicate to your users that you have up-to-date information. That is often important and can help click-through-rate (CTR) from the search results. I'd recommend putting the year into the title:
- Title: "Best X for 2020"
That way you get a stable URL that collects link juice from year to year while still signaling to users that you have the latest information.