Mastering Pretty Permalinks in WordPress

What is pretty permalinks? Well for a brief explanation that is not difficult, it is changing the settings in your WordPress URL structure from yoursite.com/?p=2 , title ‘About’ to yoursite.com/about/ ( /%postname%/ ). To use this ‘pretty’ permalink structure and incorporate both pages and posts, you need to remember your hierarchy structure of your site.

For example, if you used (as a generic example) Webmistress, Domain, Contact, Sitemap as your the parent pages, you cannot name a blog post after these as it would interfere. Yes, each post and page is naturally numbered when it is created, but in the pretty permalinks structure, it could interfere with each other. You would be trying to call two pages at once. While I created yoursite.com/?p=2 that was titled ‘About’ and then later on in yoursite.com/?p=48 also blogged in a post with the title ‘About’, the structure would both be yoursite.com/about/

So for short:

Parent Pages MUST be differently titled from your blog posts.

I hope not to boggle anyone, but I am not completely done with this especially if you self host your WordPress blog. :!:

So, now with the scenario of your pages now having the ‘pretty permalinks’, you decided to store images and information into your public html folder (in cPanel, or for Plesk users- your httpdocs folder), and you made a subfolder named ‘about’. The same rules come into play. You cannot make a subfolder OR even a subdomain that is named like your parent pages.

So, as I said, when you are using pretty permalinks, you need to recall the names of your pages hierarchy. Some like this style. I have come to like it for the past year. Some argue that it bloats that database. Others says pretty permalinks are great for search engine optimization. However, I think of it as a personal choice. I kind of like the ability to see the title of my post or page in the URL.

What do you use for your site structure while using WordPress (for those who do use it)? Have you had issues with the pretty permalinks technique? I am including a few articles to help you read more on the issue as I might talk more about pretty permalinks as another topic in the future.

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Comments

  1. says

    This is a nice post for the permalinks in wordpress. I have been implementing them on all my blogs and they just do wonders for the SEO. The category base can also be changed according to the niche of the blog which gives more SEO value to the links :)
    John recently posted..Onion BhajiMy Profile

  2. says

    First of all, I always wanted my links to make sense so I know where I am clicking and going. The advent of Twitter and tinyurl and bit.ly changed all that.

    Has it always been as simple as: /%postname%/ ?

    I remember using a category and a tag base and I started getting the stupidest url’s you could imagine like:

    domainname/domainname/2011/11/p123

    I forget when the whole thing goes awry but it has something to do with migrating your entire website to a new host.

  3. says

    It is also worth pointing out that you can set the category and tag base on your permalinks settings page. These are the prefixes that are used in URLs for category and tag archives. The WordPress Codex provides us with an example:

    example.net/wp/category_base/category_name
    example.net/wp/tag_base/tag_name

    I use “topics” for category base and “tags” for tag base. Just something extra you can easily customise to make your permalinks more “pretty” or relevant.
    Matt Park recently posted..Wet or Whet Your WhistleMy Profile

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