How To Create Descriptive Permalinks for SEO with WordPress

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What Search Engines Want

Descriptive URLs (Permalinks)

A URL (Uniform Resource Locator) is just a web address, i.e. In WordPress and other CMS/blogging applications, this is also called a permalink.

Why Search Engines Want This Info

Helps Describe Content

One of the things search engines use to determine the relevancy of your web site is your URL. URL SEO is easy with WordPress. As long as you have things set up correctly, creating descriptive permalinks with WordPress is something you almost never have to think about.

Where They Look
For It

Address bar of the web browser

URL In Browser

How To Give It To Them With WordPress

Adjust Permalinks Settings

This is easily done via the WordPress dashboard. See below for illustrated, step-by-step instructions on how to do this easy, but important, step!



Step 1: Set permalinks to /%postname%/

A. Go to “Settings”
B. Click on “Permalinks”

Settings permalinks



C. Click on “Custom” and type /%postname%/
D. Click on “Save Changes”

Permalink structure



Step 2: Write descriptive titles to achieve descriptive URLs

A. Go to “Posts”
B. Click on “Add New”

Add new post



C. Type your post title in the the title field (screen shot with arrow)
D. Click on the “body” portion of the write post page
E. Within moments, a descriptive URL will appear

URL SEO rendering



F. If you wish to edit the URL to be slightly different than it was rendered by WordPress, click the small “edit” button near the rendered URL under the title

Edit URL in WordPress



G. Change it to your desired URL (must be lower case, have no spaces, and have a dash between each word)
H. Click “OK”

Edit URL in WordPress


I. Create your post as you normally would, and click “Publish”

Your post will now be published with a DESCRIPTIVE SEO URL.

This also works for pages, and you can also go in and edit the URLs of previously published posts with this same technique.


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  1. Thanks! Free SEO optimization. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Sherry Dedman says:

      My pleasure! Watch for more in the future. This is just the first in a planned series of articles about SEO for WordPress.

  2. Hi Sherry,
    Nice explanation with images.My personal experience about it is that if we are using /%postname%/ in permalink along with SEO slug WordPress plugin,we can optimize our website for SEO more effectively.

    Thanks for sharing.

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