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How to Use Permalinks to Optimize WordPress

Posted In Products Review, Webmaster, Wordpress tips - By Techtiplib on Friday, September 13th, 2013 With No Comments »

WordPress is a content management system that allows you to build a blog without any sort of programming experience. There are lots of different plugins that you can use, and they have templates (known as themes) that can be search engine optimized up to 90% of perfect. Permalinks are part of WordPress and refer to the URLs of the page. The URL is the bit you can type into a browser address bar in order to find a specific page.

Why do we need to optimize WordPress URLs?

The URLS (permalinks) do not have to be optimized, but if you do then it becomes more search engine friendly and easier for users to read. When you create a blog post on a regular blog you are the one who has to type in what the URL is going to be for the post or the page. With WordPress it is done automatically depending upon how you have set up your “permalinks” section.

You can change your default settings so that you can make your permalinks more search engine friendly.

Changing your permalinks settings

To change the default settings you need to go to your WordPress settings. There you will find a section called “Permalinks.” You will be able to choose between:


Day and name

Month and name


Post name

Custom Structure

You need to pick “custom structure” at the bottom. Then you need to paste /%postname% into the text bar and save your settings. Now, whenever you create a new post it will just show the name of the post and not the date, as the date has no real SEO or user benefit to it.

The new structure is now more easily read by search robots as the number and other needless factors are out of the way. It is also easier for people to read and look through, as it is not mixed up and confusing. Finally, it also adds a little more weight to the actual words of your blog post because there are less of them. It has also put your post title closer to the root domain because there is not a big date stuck in between. All of the date information and other options given as defaults are not actually telling the search engines anything they need to know, and so are not really worth including on your permalink.

It is possible to optimize individual permalinks

You are able to set up blog posts where you are able to adjust and modify the permalinks of individual posts. Your blog post title may be crammed full of words that are not very important, and so you may wish to shorten your URL (permalink) a little. Your current permalink may say:

Which you may shorten on your permalink to say:

So, how do you do it?

Sadly, you will have to go back and remove the post and post it again with a new URL. Add a new URL and move the content from the old one to the new one. You can do a similar thing if you want to give all of your older posts a newer and more optimized URL.

You can change your single URLs to make them shorter, but when you do you are changing the location of your web page. You will need to create a 301 permanent redirect so that you do not have a broken link.


Some people do not like to simply use the post name. Some set up their custom permalinks, but instead of just having %postname% in the text section they also have the category name come first. To have the category show up on your permalink then you need to add %category%.

If you wanted your category name to appear before your post name on your permalinks, then you would type this into the text bar on the custom permalink option: %category%/%postname%

Post ID

Another one you may like to use is the ID of the blog post. The code for this is %post_id%. One of the stipulations for having your posts appear in the Google news is that your permalink should have at least a three digits at the end. So, you could make your WordPress post eligible for Google News if you typed this into the custom permalink section: %postname%-%post_id%

Doing this is going to show your URL as your post name and then put a quick ID number at the end of the permalink. Do not use the backslash in the same way that you would if you were adding a category, as it is not the same as adding an ID number to the actual post name.

Author Bio:

The guest post is written by Sonia Jackson. If you need any biology homework help, feel free to ask for it.

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