Hyphens or Underscores in URLs

searchenginealgorithmIn my last post, I wrote about using keywords in your domain.  If you have already chosen a domain, you can still benefit by naming your deeper pages with keywords.

When placing keywords in the URL you can use hypens or underscores. In the past, the hyphen has been recommended, but opinions vary on which is the best practice for URLs. Earlier this year, Matt Cutts posted a video in which he stated if you are using underscores and they are working for you, don’t worry about changing them. In other words, if you are using underscores, your site won’t be penalized or banned from the search results. However, if you’re building a new site and have the choice, it is still best to use hyphens rather than underscores, because Google treats hyphens as separators between words in a URL–unlike underscores. If you want to listen to Matt’s comment, check out the youtube clip: hyphens and underscores.

 

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2 Comments

  1. Hank says

    I think that using hyphens in your Domain name look cleaner and are easier for the user to read. However, it seems that having more than two keywords in your domain name, tends to get you flagged by the search engines for keyword spamming. I see, less and less top search engine ranking results from sites that have keywords in their domain name. Seems that a few years back it was more successful, but seems to be fading as an SEO method that is effective.

    Inner linking of your pages is very important, using effective keywords and linking to related articles, is a must.

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