URL Length SEO Best Practices Explained – Transcript
One of the questions a lot of SEOs ask or people starting SEO ask, is how long should your URLs be when you create pages? Now, this includes, obviously, your base URL, and then after the forward slash, whatever comes next as well. Looking at those two elements of your URL, how long should it be? Well, like many things, SEO-wise and Google-wise, it depends, but in this video, I’m going to discuss URL length then and give you some advice as to what you should be doing. Coming up.
Hey, guys. Darren Taylor of TheBigMarketer.co.uk here. My job is to teach you all about search engine marketing. If that’s up your street, you should consider subscribing to my channel. In this video, I’m looking at the character length of URLs when it comes to SEO and Google. What should you do? To be honest, it’s not the most important SEO factor and it’s something that you shouldn’t take too much attention with. There are examples across the whole web of websites with very long URLs, particularly in the e-commerce sector that rank really well. Then conversely, there are examples of URLs that are shorts that don’t rank well at all.
Of course, all the main SEO factors are going to supersede anything to do with URL length, but there are still some things you can do from a best practice point of view. First of all, generally speaking, the shorter the better. Now there are a couple of reasons for this. There have been some research pieces out there that show shorter URLs perform better in the Google search results in terms of clickthrough rates. Of course, one of the ranking factors on Google is your organic clickthrough rate. It’s important to make sure you get every last piece you can out of your listing to make sure you get the better clickthrough rate and anything like this is going to help you.
Now, there might be a couple of reasons for this. It might be because if you have a short URL, it all fits within the page so the user can see the entire URL and then make a call on whether it’s relevant to what they’re searching for, but other factors could be Google just prefers them. Who knows? Ultimately, it’s not majorly important but it’s something you should be looking at.
However, the other reason might be more important. That is if you’re not using a social media sharing tool like Bitly with a URL shortener, then it makes sense to have shorter domain names and shorter URLs. Because when you share that on social media, a short URL isn’t going to eat into your character count as a bigger URL. In fact, it will look more aesthetically pleasing as well. That can be quite important, too. If you’re not using a URL shortener, it makes sense to keep your URLs short anyway.
One thing to add, and that is something that’s the maximum length of a URL. In Internet Explorer, the maximum length of a URL allowed is 2083 characters. It makes sense not to exceed this, though it’s quite a big ask to even think of exceeding a limit that long. Maybe in the URL structure of your website, it makes URLs really long. That’s a technical and developer issue altogether that you should be looking to resolve. Generally speaking, you’re not going to get to that length of URL anyway, but it’s good to be aware of the maximum limit that you’re allowed in the first place.
Guys, just to summarize, it make sense to keep your URLs as short as you can, and where you can obviously insert your keywords into your URL in the first instance to make sure you get a better chance of ranking on Google. Apart from that, there’s not a lot to say. Google doesn’t take them that seriously in terms of an SEO ranking factor. It’s not something that’s going to make or break your overall SEO strategy.
Just keep within the limits, try and keep it as short as possible, and then for the obvious aesthetic reasons beyond that, just do it because it’s something Google seems to like a bit more than the other option. Again, when it comes to SEO, every little optimization helps. Guys, I hope that makes sense. If you liked this video, hit the like button below. Let me know in the comments what you think about your URL lengths. Are you trying to shorten them, are your URLs messy, are you looking to tidy them up. I look forward to discussing that with you in the comments. More important than that, don’t forget to subscribe. Check out the other content on my channel and I’ll see you guys on my next video.