What’s the best permalink structure?

When doing SEO work on your website, the permalink plays a big part. Permalinks are permanent links to a post or page which does not change over time.
A well structured permalink is super important to attract visitors and search engine robots to your website. They should be easy to read and to understand what the article is about.

WordPress uses an ID based permalink structure by default that looks something like this: http://example.com/?p=524

These types of permalinks are not very SEO friendly and should always be avoided.

The most common structure is Post Name. Example:  http://example.com/five-quick-seo-tips.

Stop Words in permalinks or not?

Generally, WordPress does a pretty good job generating the permalink and you probably also have an SEO plugin installed which alters the link further.

For example, Yoast SEO removes Stop Words which is debatable if they should be used or not. It believe that they should be used.

Stop Words could for example be: I, If, In, To, When, etc.

This can be disabled in Yoast settings. Go to SEO > Advanced > Permalinks and tick off the box that says “Remove stop words from slugs”.

Three quick SEO tips

  • Separate words using hyphens instead of underscores.
  • Never change a permalink after you’ve published the post or page. If you really need to change the permalink, you will need to setup a 301 redirect from the old permalink to the new one. Example below.
  • Always use your SEO keywords in the permalink.