Common Blogging Questions When Setting Up Site Architecture / Hierarchy
Which permalink structure to use?
How to select urls when publishing a post?
Should I use numbers, dates, etc… in the url?
No? But the Yoast SEO plugin says I should be doing this, this, and this! And my focus keyword isn’t right!!!
Here’s a real life example I just posted of how I chose NOT to use the default url structure that Yoast SEO (pretty much the most popular wordpress seo plugin everyone uses) plugs by default, and I’ll explain why. Today, I only have so much time to write, but I have to get my post out today because I’m doing a 30 in 30 (30 blog posts in 30 days), both as an experiment in content marketing traffic, and personal discipline.
I don’t want my content quality to suffer just to get something out the door, so I have to make what I can write today as good as it can be right? But here’s the thing… if I only write about “3” clever ways to make money from a blog, but I left out a really important one I’ve been doing myself, but just didn’t think about at the time of publishing, it looks pretty wonky if I come back and add “4 Clever ways to make money blogging”… when the url would read www.cleverleverage.com/3-clever-ways-to-make-money-blogging/.
Sometimes bloggers won’t realize if they change this 6 months later and don’t keep the same permalink for that post, they lose all the links from friends blogs, other internal links from other posts within your blog will be all screwed up, etc… Bad bad.
So simply by recognizing this when you publish, and take into account if this topic is going to be around for the long haul or not (especially if it’s something you might want to expound upon later, a question that gets asked a lot that would require you to expand on it, etc…), you can set your blog and posts up in a different way to be more evergreen.
By setting your WordPress permalinks up with %postname%, and then removing any date based or number based entries in your individual blog post url upon original publishing, you have the freedom to come back later and change the blog post title, title tag, meta description, and more as you see fit for content updates.
With date based permalinks, you’re kind of stuck with it unless you start doing a bunch of redirects and audit your entire site to catch any broken links. Even if you do it right, there’s still commonly a bit of lack of link juice that gets miss directed from time to time.
Not a huge deal really, but lets’ say you publish 100 posts on your blog over the next year or so, and 10 of them are list style posts (like this example), keep in mind you might want to go back and update those with new recommendations as you up your skills or have new experiences. Maybe you learned new techniques, maybe a new product hit the market that’s better, or maybe even something you used to recommend is no longer good or was discontinued.
Either way, when you’re intentionally setting up pillar posts, this is good practice to keep WordPress from raining on your parade later on in the future.
Do you have any related permalink tips or questions? Let me know in the comments!