WordPress Permalink Settings Walkthrough – What Are Permalinks? | WP Learning Lab
When webmasters first move to WordPress permalinks are one of those confusing things that don’t make sense right away. I think it’s because of the name. WordPress Permalinks are just how the URL structure for your website is defined. I’m sure if the WordPress developers named it URL Structure instead of Permalinks there would be much less confusion.
Sorry about the rant. Moving On 🙂 Permalinks are important for SEO, so it’s not a setting you want to take lightly. Let’s get started and do it right because permalinks are a pain to change after you’ve already create a lot of content (find out why at the bottom of this article).
To get to the WordPress Permalink Settings page please log into your WordPress admin panel and then hover over the Settings menu option. In the flyout dropdown menu that appears please click on Permalinks.
On the next page you see the Permalink Settings. By default, WordPress chooses the Default setting for your site’s Permalinks and it is the worst option for SEO.
To maximize the SEO power of every URL on your website you want to make sure that the URL contains the keyword(s) you are trying to rank for. Keeping that in mind the only two permalink options that are useful are “Day and name” and “Post name”. They both put the post title into the WordPress permalinks structure. The post title should also contain the keyword(s) you’re trying to rank for.
The “Day and name” option also includes the day, month and year the article was published. This is great for a news website where dates are important. If you have just a content website then I recommend you stick with the “Post name” option which puts nothing in the URL besides your domain name and the post name.
You can also create WordPress custom permalinks, but unless you know what you’re doing I recommend you don’t do that.
The permalinks can be edited a little bit when you are publishing your posts as well.
In the Optional section at the bottom of the page you can choose base content for the category and tag URLs. You can leave these fields blank and click on “Save Changes”.
If you already have a bunch of content and you are now changing your Permalinks make sure that you 301 redirect all of the old URLs to the new ones otherwise you’re going to lose a lot of SEO power and Google rankings.