Write URLs For Human Readers & Bots Will Follow

If a normal human being can anticipate what kind of content might be found on this page:


…then you can bet that a search engine will be able to figure it out, too. Search engines are just dumb humans. Here is a tip: Write your file and directory names like you were organizing a book. For example, if you were writing a online book about insects (and spiders, in particular), a good, human readable URL might look like this:


A URL that looks like this:

InsectWorld.com/page.asp?cat_id=23&page=15 is bad. Very bad. Crazy bad.

See where I’m going here? If you can read it, so can a search engine.

BTW, don’t over do it. (e.g. don’t make them too long). You should be able to tell a friend what the URL is (out loud, using your own voice) without sounding like a complete idiot.

2 replies
  1. Paula
    Paula says:

    Well said. As a marketer and SEO person, getting this through in the geek part of our office is sometimes amazingly hard. I’ll show them this post. 🙂

  2. Dave Mon
    Dave Mon says:

    Short sweet and to the point. This is a good article its common sense that is just not common enough. I love the point you make that robots are just dumb humans.


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