I'm wondering if there will be any SEO/readability/memorability benefit to using this kind of URL structure for my upcoming project: www.moviereviews.com/movie/name?

Considering that /movie is not a real directory. So that page doesn't exist. Something similar to wordpress /category/ base that is used purely for content separation on the site.

What do you think? For user it will be beneficial, if domain doesn't signal what content is about my extra dir will tell what it is about. Correct?

But from SEO perspective?

  • Use a more specific directory for example "/genre/action/..." - this is readable and you already have "movies" in the domain.
    – dvnkiss
    Jun 22, 2013 at 23:30

3 Answers 3


For readability, memorability or SEO, I don't think this can be beneficial, especially if you have the word movie in your domain name. A good idea for SEO could have been for the word movie for backlinks as an URL but if you already have it in the domain name, no interest.

Just avoid tricks, think about users before SEO and for users more the URL is short, more the URL is easy to remember.


I think it makes sense to use the folder movie (or something like that) in your URLs. It works as a prefix so that there can be no conflicts with other URLs on the site. If you’d use no folder, think what happens if someone makes a movie titled robots.txt ;-) or more likely contact etc.

Search engines won’t penalize you if the hierarchical parts of URLs are not browsable, because it’s very common on the Web (as it’s not required technically).

But why don’t you provide some content under /movie? It probably doesn’t help with SEO much, but some users may thank you. You could show a list of all movies, or offer a form searching for movies. Or, if you can’t find any sensible content, simply 301-redirect to the front page.

  • Do you really think someone will create a movie titled robots.txt? Moreover, you're not answering the question which is about SEO perspective for URL.
    – Zistoloen
    Jun 24, 2013 at 7:56
  • @Zistoloen: Yes, there will be a movie titled "robots.txt". But that’s not the point (as I mentioned it’s more likely that there will be other conflicts, e.g. with "contact"). No, I answered the question re. SEO: no advantage, no disadvantage.
    – unor
    Jun 24, 2013 at 17:17

Using directory will not attract Google penalty but for user point of view its irritating because one might just remove the "name" from URL (www.moviereviews.com/movie/name) to browse the main category will surely give 404. I would suggest that you should redirect the URL www.moviereviews.com/movie to some relevant page to make sure it does not pass 404 to the user.

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