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WordPress Permalinks, which is the best one to use?

on April 4, 2011 | WordPress | Comments (1)

While there is no hard and fast rule for which WordPress permalink setup you should use on your blog or website, there are several different options for your consideration and you should analyse which may be best for your site.

WordPress offers several different options and variations to set your permalinks and of course you can customise these to your liking.

The main current options are:

%year%
%monthnum%
%day%
%hour%
%minute%
%second%
%post_id%
%postname%
%category%
%tag%
%author%

WordPress actually now advises (whereas previously I don’t believe they did) that starting your permalink with either postname, category, tag or author is strongly not recommended for performance reasons – as in it uses more processes and resources to dynamically create and parse the URLs.

I myself have gone down the route of trying not to make my site to WordPress-y

Ie, I am just using %postname%

This looks neat, simple and keeps the URLs as short as possible. Also you could say the URL will be ‘keyword rich’ and good for SEO. Google often looks at the anchor text of an incoming links – and some people may use the post title as the incoming link so this would result in a strong internal link to your site using this method.

Many high end blogs like to use

%year%/%monthnum%/%day%/%postname%

or %postname%/%post_id%

These 2 structures are fine, and would work well if you have lots of new content going up daily/ hourly. This ensure there is no way 2 posts may end up having the same URL, however if you are careful you can avoid this with a little extra caution when setting your permalink on post creation. In my case due to note a huge amount of content going up, I just take extra precautions that the URL correct.

It is important to setup your permalink structure at the beginning of your blog creation, as ultimately changing your permalinks can affect your backlinks, trackbacks, and therefore most probably your positions on the Search Engine Results Page (SERPs). If you change the permalink structure on website with lots of content you will have to spend considerable time with redirects and/or fixing broken links.

What is your preferred setup and why? Have you changed permalink options on an already establish site and what impact did this have?


David Cowling : Editor and Founder of SocialMediaNews.com.au. I also run a Social Media Agency where I do consulting work and another blog dedicated to Instagram news. Connect with me: Twitter | LinkedIn | Google + or contact me here. Alternatively, you can send me an email at david@socialmedianews.com.au

  • What about having "/%category%/%postname%/" or "/%category%/%postname%.html" as your permalink? Do you think it is better to have .html at the end of urls?











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