The URL address, so an internet address, defines and identifies resource locations on the Internet. In simpler terms, it is the localisation of a page or file on the web. Every webpage has its own unique URL address, which makes it easier for users to find it.
What does a friendly URL address look like?
Friendly links are URL addresses which have logically connected array of characters and appeals to the parent category (subpage) and shows the user, which part of the service they are currently viewing. There are no accidental parameters, numbers or phrases.
They are easier to memorise and they definitely present themselves better when posted on social media.
A friendly URL address looks like this, for example:
An unfriendly URL often presents itself like this:
www. yourpage /index. php?action=blog&p=123&title=this-is-not-a-friendly-url
The difference between the above examples will be detected by the average user as well as Search engine bots. The presence of various parameters in the second link can lead to it being treated as spam.
The structure of a www website address
What is a URL made up of? Usually it is made up of three main elements:
- a protocol,
- a domain,
- the path leading to a given file on the server.
The protocol defines in what way we are able to gain access to a certain elemet. In the case of webpages, it is usually the HTTP or HTTPS protocol. The domain leads to the server, on which the certain site is stored, and the path to displaying the certain webpage or file. We can also encounter more elaborate URL addresses. Besides defining the protocol, domain and the file path, we can also see the following in a URL:
- Subdomain – an additional address belonging to the main site, which points to a separate part of it.
- Parameters – appear at the end of the address, e. g. after using a search bar on a site, using a filter option or sorting. They are also used to track the user’s behaviour on the site.
- Hyperlinks to a certain section of the site – they are visible after clicking the link leading to a different section of the same page.
A friendly URL vs. an unfriendly URL
In the first case, independently from where you see the link, you will know what it leads to – you will be able to connect it to the website, category that it belongs to, as well as the topic that it is about. Therefore, certain elements of the address are arranged in a friendly manner for the user. Imagine a situation where you would want to return to a certiain subpage, which in your opinion contained a useful article.
If its URL address is friendly, it is going to be much easier for you to remember and type it, because every element is logically linked. The second case is located on the opposite end of the spectrum. The only piece of information that you can get from it is the main page it points to – the rest of the information simply isn’t there.
When seeing such a link (with no additional description), think about whether or not you are ready to click on it. The natural reaction is suspecting that the link lead to a websit, which is not entirely secure, so it is better to resign from viewing it. Search engine bots react in a similar way – they do not trust sites with unclear URL addresses, which can affect the Website’s ranking on the search result page.