The web-address or URL (Uniform Resource Location) specify the location of resources on the internet. In our context, the resource is the web page in your WordPress site.
Slug is a part of the URL which can be used to uniquely identify a post or page in your WordPress site. Slug has a unique value for each page or post and you can use whatever text values.
But this slug in WordPress site is very important when it comes to SEO and people use simple relevant names so that you can remember the URL easily.
Why Slug is important?
In WordPress, you use the slug to create permalink to the post. Slug plays an important role on the on-page SEO of the web page because name of the slug can be changed manually according to your SEO stretergy.
Now we will find the answer for What is slug in SEO? Because creating the correct slug is important when you do the on page optimization.
Role of the Slug in WordPress SEO
Slug in WP plays an important role in SEO and we will study it in detail here now.
Creating a better slug for your page affects the on page SEO score of your page. With the correct slug, you can achieve the following benefits.
Include your target keyword in the URL.
QUOTE: “I believe that is a very small ranking factor. So it is not something I’d really try to force. And it is not something I’d say it is even worth your effort to restructure your site just so you can get keywords in your URL.” John Mueller, Google 2016
Although keywords in the URL is a tiny ranking factor but affects the overall SEO performance of your page. We have observed this for a long time and it is just an indication of the relevance of your page to Google and users. When users see the keyword of your URL through google results they are most likely to click your page.
Sometimes when you look at the URL of a site, you can identify what this page is about. The URLS like that have got proper slug to match the contents of the page.
Even google can classify the page content easily if it can analyse the keywords in the URL.
So due to these facts do not forget to put your target keyword in the slug.
This is one items in our WP on page SEO checklist
User friendly URL
If you have a meaningful and user friendly url it brings some weight to the page contents. This is something that you have full control to name your URL properly with slug
As you can see in the image, how easily users can see the URL in search results and name of the slug is very simple and relevant to the contents of the page.
So you have to create a user friendly and relevant URL if you want to compete with these page results.
WordPress default site creates the URL like this
This is not a user friendly URL. So we call this type of URL a dynamic URL with parameters.
You can create a URL with WP slug like www.wpruns.com/wp-seo-guide which is user friendly and relevant to the topic. We name this type of URL as SEO friendly URL
Even by looking at the URL the user will be able make sure what he is going to read on that content. Search engine also love to see readable URL.
Suppose you are going to share following two links with
Look at the #1 URL Can you identify what is on the page when you look at the URL. No you can not, you do not have even a clue about the page.
But in the second URL with meaning full slug, someone can easily understand that this page is about “Wordpress SEO Guide”.
Now you can understand the power of the slug in WordPress when you want to share a URL.
In the following section, we will see how to create user friendly URLs with WordPress slug
How do you create a slug in wordpress?
Before creating the slug for your page or post you have to edit some settings.
Go to Setting > Permalinks
Select the option named “Post Name”
In this option when you create a post and name that post, slug will be created automatically by separating words with dashes
For example if you create a post with title “How create backlinks for website” your slug will be
Now your URL is user-friendly one but it is not optimised for search engines. Remember these slugs are unique to this page and you can not create another slug with the same name.
If you want to edit the slug you can simply enter the text you need and save it.
[slug edit image]
In the next section we will see how to creates search engine optimised slugs
Create search engine optimized URL with slugs
Now you know what the slug is and how to create a slug for your web page in WP. Now your task is to create optimised slugs (Urls) for your WordPress driven website. I have listed several facts which you can use to create search engine optimised slugs or urls for your page or post
Keep your slug simple, relevant, compelling and accurate
Both user and Google can understand about the content of the page if you can create slug with adobe mentioned qualities
Do not forget to Include your target keyword in the slug.
Do not use stop words because stop word does not bring any value to the URL
For example, words like “a”, “the”, “on”, “and”, “is”, “of”, “you” and other similar words.
URL should be meaningful but concise. So by looking at the slug one should be able to understand what he is going to expect on this page.
You can use hyphen (-) to separate the word in the URL. Do not use underscore or any other character because this will increase the readability of your URL
Use lowercase letters always in your slug.
Some web servers treat following two URLs are two different one, especially Apache server running on Linux machine
So avoid using capital letters in your slug as a rule
Avoid use of URL parameters if possible because they will create issues for duplicate contents
The keyword effectiveness of your URL decreases as URL length and keyword position increase. So you always try to make short slugs and try to place the target keyword at the beginning of the slug
Example of a good slug with target keyword:
When you change the slug in your post do not forget to add 301 redirect to the new page. Otherwise the old url will be identified as a broken link.