When it comes to SEO, you always talk about picking the ideal WordPress Slug for your page. So, what is Slug? The “slug” is the URL-friendly version of the name. It is usually all lowercase and contains only letters, numbers, and hyphens.Why is it so much important? How can you optimize it? These are the obvious and common questions people have with regards to the WordPress Slug. Today, we will discuss all about Slug, and if you have any sort of a question about it, this article will stop your search. Let’s dive in.
What is WordPress Slug?
In the simplest of forms, Slug explains the content you have on your web page. As an example, the Slug of URL, https://feedaback.com/qualcomm-is-set-to-launch-its-snapdragon-888-5g-chipset/, is the wordings you see after the domain name (in this case what you see after https://feedaback.com/).
How to use or edit WordPress Slug?
In WordPress, you can edit it when you write a blog post, but, if you want to get maximum out of it, you will have to use correct permalink settings in the first place. In Permalink settings, you will notice that there are several options for you to choose a slug for your posts. If you are eyeing for right SEO tactics, we would recommend you to use the Slug starting with post name. This makes sense as you always want to include focus keywords in the URL.
Having relevant words in the WordPress slug makes users and Google or any other search engines to figure out what is your web page is all about. There are slug options like plain, day and name, month and name, and numeric in the Permalink settings, the decision is always yours to choose the ideal one.
What is the importance of WordPress slug for SEO?
- Write keyword-rich Slug.
As we stated earlier, the most prominent help you get from the Slug is that you can include the keywords in it that you intend to rank for. Google uses the URL to determine the web page, which directly has a say on SEO.
- It must be user-friendly.
In search results, browsers can see the URL, and having a clear and user-friendly slug improves the click-through rate. You must write the Slug exactly matching the users’ search intentions, and it should be on point if you want impressions to convert as clicks.
If you happen to use a plugin like Yoast, it would suggest how to optimize your Slug. As an example, it tells you to include your focus keyword in Slug and checks whether your Slug is up to the expected levels of SEO.
How to write a perfect WordPress Slug?
Let’s see how to write the Slug to get maximum benefits.
- Add your primary keyword.
Yes, we have talked about this previously, and it’s a no brainer to explain its importance of it. So, while adding the keywords in Slug, make sure you keep your keywords right at the beginning, not after several words from your domain name.
- Use only lowercase letters.
Do not use uppercase letters in the WordPress slug, and make sure to avoid mixing upper and lowercase letters as well. If not, there can be a potential risk of creating duplicate content.
- Write a short but descriptive one.
If you have intentions of using the URL for any other purposes, it’s always better avoiding long slugs. And, long slugs are considered as not user-friendly. Another essential thing you have to keep in mind is, never use dates inside your URL as it would be an unwanted giveaway for the browsers and your click-through rate would not be significant. This is because most users expect up-to-date content, and revealing the published date would not help your course.
Also, keeping it short helps Google show the keywords right after your domain name, which will come quite handy for you to show them to mobile users. Users often go straight to the content they see their search terms in them.
- Cut unnecessary words.
Once you select the post name at permalink settings, WordPress will automatically choose a slug for you. This can be a relatively long one and contains unwanted words. If that is the case, you should change the Slug and remove those words. Still, you should not cut off the keywords you are aiming for. What we are telling is words like “a, are, and, to” might not be essential in the Slug in some cases. Yes, we are not doing any affiliate thing here, but if you use Yoast plugin for this purpose, it will cut off these words and help you write the perfect Slug.
- Match it with the title.
It would be best if you tried to match the Slug with the title of your post. But, this doesn’t necessarily tell you to replicate the title in the URL. It works well when search engines crawl for the most appropriate search results. If you use two separate wordings in your title and Slug, it will confuse the search engines when determining your page’s content. Typically, titles are longer than the Slug, and they use space to separate words whereas you will have to use hyphens, underscores and only lowercase letters in the WordPress slug.
Pro tip: Do not change the WordPress slug once you publish the content
If you notice the Slug you used is not ideal for SEO or anything wrong, do not try to change it. Changing the slug means, if a user attempt to access the content via previously used URL, it won’t take them to the content anymore. And, the browser will receive a 404 error. Also the previous link will become a broken link, which is not good for your site and SEO. So it’s always a must to read the Slug carefully and check for the elements we mentioned before publishing the content.
Redirects for Rescue
If you change the WordPress slug, search engines can not find the content using the old URL. If that happens you need to change the already existing slug, the best way is setting up 301 redirect from old to new slug. You can easily do this with Redirection or SEO Yoast plugins.
We hope there is nothing left answered in your mind regarding WordPress slug. It’s one of the critical factors of on-page SEO stuff. Use it to your advantage. And, please comment below if you need further assistance, we are more than happy to serve you. Cheers!