Basic WordPress Permalinks
I’ve seen many great blog posts about how to properly set up your WordPress blog for SEO. The problem is they are outdated and don’t tackle to full range of possibilities when it comes to optimizing for search engines. It’s widely accepted amongst search marketers that search engine rankings have a correlation with keywords used in the URL of a page.
If you did a Google search for how to properly set up your permalinks for SEO, most sites would tell you to set them to look like the picture below.
SEO Friendly Example:
Most SEO’s would agree that the default method of WordPress permalinks needs to be changed to a method that includes the post name. Depending of what type of site you have and how many times you post to your blog will determine which post name method you should use. A website that posts a lot of content about a similar topic would probably like to select the month and name option. This will automatically add the year and month date to the url to show your visitors when the page was published. If your website doesn’t post as much, or the content is not necessarily date specific, you can choose the post name only option.
The More Advanced SEO Permalinks
The above example is a great way to instantly transform your WordPress blog URL’s into search engine friendly URL’s. The next example of permalinks is how you take it to the next level, and with hardly any additional work. Today, search engines are more than just a simple search bar. As a matter of fact, more people get their information from the internet today than television and radio. So if your optimizing your URL’s for search engines why not optimize them for services such as Google News as well. Make your WordPress permalinks structure look like the example below to maximize your search engine visibility across the board.
Google News and SEO Friendly Example:
Sites such as Google News have strict URL guidelines that determines which URL’s they will crawl for their news feed. Your website’s URL doesn’t have to look exactly like the one above but it must be unique, permanent, and display at least a three-digit number. The above example tackles all three of those requirements. The post name will display the keyword rich URL, and then the month, day, and post id number will concatenate together to form the necessary amount numbers you need in the URL for Google News. Feel free to ask any questions or continue this discussion in the comments below.
There’s Always an Exception
There is only one way to work around putting numbers in the URL, and that’s by submitting a Google News Sitemap in addition to submitting an XML or other sitemap.