When you're running a small business, the internet can prove to be an incredibly powerful resource to raise awareness for your brand.
If you're like most small businesses, you've decided to start a blog so that you can deliver quality content to your audience and give your website a boost in search rankings.
An important aspect of search engine optimization (SEO) that should not be overlooked is the URL. As a best practice, you should take a moment to optimize the URL of each blog post that you publish for both your readers and search engines. By doing this, you'll most certainly have an edge over your competitors in search.
Here are several tips for creating a search friendly URL:
Keep your URLs short.
Google gives preference to shorter URLs in search rankings. Google actually offers its own URL shortener, and another great tool for shortening URLs is Bitly.
Include 1 to 2 keywords in your URL.
Focus on adding 1 or 2 of your targeted keywords to your URL as this has been shown to lead to a boost in search rankings. It's important not to get carried away, though, as including too many keywords can actually hurt your ranking. Remember to keep your URL short and sweet.
Make your URLs readable for your audience.
You shouldn't just optimize your URLs for search engines. By creating URLs that are more readable for your audience, you'll be enhancing the user experience, thus earning a higher search ranking.
Take advantage of canonical URLs.
If you find that you have multiple URLs with similar content, you can take advantage on canonical URLs, which will consolidate the URLs. This will help to more effectively communicate to search engines what the content on your website is about, which will ultimately improve your search ranking.
Use HTTPS URLs.
Google recently announced that preference is given to URLs that use HTTPS encryption. Considering the number of security breaches that we hear about these days, it's in every company's best interest to now have an HTTPS website.
Use a .com domain.
You have a lot of options for domains, and none of them really have a direct influence on search rankings. However, a .com domain is typically the most trusted and authoritative option.
Use safe characters.
What we mean by this is to use letters of the alphabet instead of untraditional characters such as the space bar, quotations, percentage symbols, and more. Again, this ties back into the readability of your URL.
If you take the time to optimize your URLs so that they are both search friendly and easy for your audience to decipher, you'll be pleased with the exposure that your content receives.