How rewrite a URL

DSM Digital School of Marketing - url

For computer networks as well as servers to be able to communicate with one another computers rely on a language which is made up of numbers in addition to letters. This is called an IP address. Every single device which is connected to the Internet has an IP address which is unique.

To browse easily on the web, typing in a lengthy IP address isn’t ideal, or realistic, for an online user. This is why domain names were designed and their function is to hide IP addresses with something that can be remembered easily. You could look at the domain name as a “nickname” for the IP address.

So what, exactly, is a URL?

A URL combines the domain name, in addition to other detailed information, in order to establish a complete address (or “web address”) in order to direct a browser to a specific online page which is called a web page. In essence, a URL is set of directions which every web page.

Why would you need to rewrite a URL?

URL rewriting can be one of the quickest ways to improve the usability as well as search friendliness of your website. However, it is an advanced solution that can be difficult to implement if you have a limited understanding of code. In addition, it can be a major source of unhappiness if this task is not done correctly.

If written well, a URL can help to tell a user and a search engine what a page is about. Consider the following URL:


This URL is difficult to remember and it doesn’t tell you much about the page’s content. Now consider this URL:


This URL is a lot shorter and cleaner but it still doesn’t tell us exactly what the page is about.

http://www.birds.com/species /garden-birds/

With this URL, we can finally guess what we are likely to find on the page.

How does URL rewriting work? 

Add a URL-rewrite rule to your htaccess file. Choose your preferred domain (www or non-www) and automatically rewrite URLs to the specified domain.

The same URL with a different Session ID appended can be seen as duplicate content. Once again, the htaccess file can be used to disable these parameters.

Google Webmaster Tools

Above, we mentioned automatic URL-rewriting for domain names. An easier way to do this is via Google Webmaster Tools. Simply log in to your account, go to “Configuration”, click on “Settings” and set a preferred domain.

What is a friendly URL?

The term ‘friendly URL’ refers to a Web address which is easy to read. This type of URL includes words which describe what is on the webpage. The reason why this type of URL can be “friendly” is:

  1. It can assist visitors with remembering the Web address.
  2. It can assist with describing the page to search engines.

Friendly URLs which are short as well as easy to remember are considered to be user-friendly URLs. This is because these URLs assist visitors with remembering web addresses. This means that they can revisit pages by simply typing in the URL address bar.

While user-friendly URLs are extremely useful for visitors, most webmasters are more worried about putting together search engine-friendly URLs. These URLs combine important keywords which  describe the content of the page. Since most search engines include the Web address as part of the information that describes a page, placing keywords in the URL can help boost the ranking of the page.

Get in touch with the Digital School of Marketing

Want to learn more about SEO and find out what it takes to master this for your business? If so, then you should really do our SEO and Web Analytics Course. Follow this link for more information.

DSM Digital School of Marketing SEO and Web Analytics course registration