Permalinks

Permalinks are very important for search engines. Permalinks are permanent links that identify a post of a blog.
The URL (web address) for getting to a post has different parts at a normal WordPress blog. The first element is the domain followed by different parts as for example the date, post id, category or whatever. By default you will use permalinks with a similar structure to one of the following links:

www.myownblog.com/?p=12369844   or  www.myownblog.com/11-10-2011/?p=12369844

This URL doesn´t make any sense as nobody can keep them in mind. In addition there is no human or search engine that knows what is behind the post id. A simple number cannot describe the content of the post. For getting a search engine optimization (SEO) it is important to change the permalink structure when setting up the blog as described in the tutorial how to start a blog.

The content manager system WordPress offers you some options for different types of permalinks. Some options use the date when the post was published, the name of the post, post id, category, etc.

Our permalink recommendation

wordpress permalink structureWe recommend to select the “Custom Structure”. Once set up you don´t have to take any further changes. The custom structure allows you creating a structure using different elements. We recommend you using the category and the post name if you have several categories at your blog. At the Custom Structure field you should write /%category%/%postname%/   in this case.  If you just have one or two categories and you are using always different postnames you also can use just the post name as custom structure. In this case you should write just /%postname%/ as in the picture.

Permalink example

If you have an American Sports Blog, each sport is one category (NFL, NBA, MLB… ) and you are writing a post about changes in the NY Yankees team you could use the following URL structure. /%category%/%postname%/

The result would be an URL like this one www.americansports.com/MLB/new-york-yankees-team-changes

This URL would be better for search engines and users than using a default URL with the following structure  www.americansports.com/?p=4654521355

Just reading the first URL everybody will know what the post is about.
If possible, you should change your permalinks as soon as possible. It´s better changing them right after installing WordPress and before posting your first post.  You just have to do this once.