30 May Why Your Blog URL Structure Matters
You’ve created your website, written a few blogs, and even published them. Although you’ve done a lot of work getting your blog ready to go, you’re not done yet.
For your blog to be successful, you need to ensure that each component is operating smoothly and correctly—including the URL.
Here are some basics regarding URLs, as well as a few of the most common URL structure issues we’ve found.
When you’re setting up your blog site, especially on WordPress, this is one of the most common URL structures you’re going to see:
Let’s unpack this.
The protocol, https, is the hypertext transfer protocol. Https sites are secure and will have a little green lock icon on the left side of the address bar. These days, the “s” is a necessity. It is no longer a nice-to-have option—it is a requirement. In fact, Google is actually starting to punish sites that do not have it.
If you do not have the “s” in your URL, reach out to us. We’re happy to talk you through why it’s important and how to set it up for your site.
The next portion of the URL, the www, is the sub-domain. There are times you may see something else in place of the dub-dub-dub. For example, instead of www, you might see blog or lp for landing page. The most common reason a subdomain is used is to organize content. Unique subdomains are typically only used when you have a ton of content, or when you have content that needs a space of their own.
The website, or your actual domain, is what you’re going to pay for. On our website, tresemergroup.com, “tresemergroup” is the domain.
The top-level domain is the dot com. Most of the time dot com is used for commerce sites. However, there are many other top-level domains out there. You’ve likely seen .us or .edu for educational institutions, and .gov for government institutions. Top-level domains are changing and becoming really fun and exciting. Now you can even get domains like .marketing. Keep in mind that you’ll usually pay a bit more for those, but they’re a little more custom and a lot more fun!
The most important section of the URL structure is the page. In the example above, “post-title-here” would be the title of your blog post. This tells Google and other search engines that the page is a top priority, which is likely not the case if it is a blog post. Blog posts are shorter and sometimes temporary. Sure, they can be evergreen, but they’re more like paper towels. They don’t have as long of a shelf life so they’re not key, core content for your website.
The example URL structure tells search engines that the page is essential due to its location. The closer a page and the words in that URL are to the domain, the website.com, the more important search engines think the page is. If you’re doing a really wide variety of blog post content, it can confuse search engines. If there’s no structure and no categories, search engines can’t figure out how critical a page is because, according to the URL structure, they’re all a top priority. And if everything is important, nothing is.
We recommend placing your posts under a folder or a path called blog, like in the image below. You can call it whatever you want, news, blogs, blog posts, but keep it short and sweet. This structure tells Google that these pages over here belong to the blog, so they’re not as important as your products or services pages.
When users spin up WordPress for the first time, WordPress pushes the year, month, and day as the default URL structure. As we mentioned above, the closer that page–the URL post title–is to the domain, the more important search engines think it is. In the default structure, the page is really far away. Too far away. Rather than being too close to the domain, we’re now three folder structures down the line.
So, what should you do instead? Just place it two levels down under /blog!
Got Structure Struggles?
Looking at your blog structure and thinking, “Ooh, yikes, I fall into one of these categories!”?
This is a big change to make. Fixing your URL structure is not as simple as just changing the URL. Trust us, you don’t want to do that. It will break a bunch of stuff. Let us help you make sure everything is redirected properly. Reach out to us, we’re happy to walk you through the process.