0 8 Aug, 2011
In Internet Marketing, SEO Services Tags:

Static URLs or Dynamic URLs

It is well known that there are two types of URLs:  Dynamic URLs and Static URLs. A Dynamic URL is a page address that results from the search of a database-driven web site or the URL of a web site that runs scripts; Dynamic URLs are generated from specific queries to a site’s database. The dynamic page is basically only a template in which to display the results of the database query. Instead of changing information in the HTML code, the data is changed in the database. In contrast, in Static URLs, the contents of the web page stay the same unless the changes are hard-coded into the HTML.

Websites that utilize databases which can insert content into a webpage by way of a dynamic script like PHP or JavaScript are increasingly popular. This type of site is considered dynamic. Many websites choose dynamic content over static content. This is because if a website has thousands of products or pages, writing or updating each static by hand is a monumental task.

But there is a risk when using dynamic URLs: search engines don’t like them. For those at most risk of losing search engine positioning due to dynamic URLs are e-commerce stores, forums, sites utilizing content management systems and blogs like Mambo or WordPress, or any other database-driven website.

It can be regarded as a common sense that Database-driven Web site needs to be static URL, and as the most basic requirement of SEO. Recent years, SEOers agreed that URL of 2-3 question marks is not a problem, and can be included by the search engine, especially the domain name with high weight. But in any case, Static URLs are generally recommended.

Google Webmaster blog once published an article discussing the static or dynamic Web site, which overturned this view. In this post, Google specifically recommended not make the Dynamic URL static, but to keep that long dynamic URL with some question mark parameters. Relatively rare, I am very dismissive the SEO recommendation given by Google.

From Google’ points:

Firstly, Google is fully capable of crawling dynamic URLs, how many question marks is not a problem. This is undoubted.

Secondly, Dynamic URLS are more friendly to help the Google spider understand the meaning of the URL, as well as to identify, because URL parameters are suggestive. For example Google gave this example: www.example.com/article/bin/answer.foo?language=en&answer=3&sid=98971298178906&query=URL

In this URL, parameters will help Google understand the URL and Web content. For example, ‘language’ is followed by prompt language, ‘answer’ is followed by article number, session ID is certainly behind the ‘sid’. With the help of these parameters, Google is more easy to understand pages.

While in the Static URLs, the significance of these parameters usually becomes less noticeable. For example this URL: www.example.com/shoes/red/7/12/men/index.html

Google does not know which the product serial number is, which the size is and so on.

Thirdly, it is easy to make the mistake during the conversion for Dynamic URLs to Static URLs. For example, the exchange of the order of Dynamic URL parameters can be resulted it the same page. These two URLs is probably the same page:

www.example.com/article/bin/answer.foo?language=en&answer=3

www.example.com/article/bin/answer.foo?answer=3&language=en

Keep Dynamic URLs, Google is still relatively easy to understand that this is the same page. But after converting to static, it is no longer easy for Google to determine the two web sites are the same page or not, which may lead to duplicate content:

www.example.com/shoes/men/7/red/index.html

www.example.com/shoes/red/7/men/index.html

Therefore, Google does not recommend static URL.

But I suggest to static. The reason is:

Firstly, Google’s proposal is to proceed from Google itself, without considering the other search engines. For Google, it’s no problem to crawl Dynamic URLs, but this does not mean that Yahoo, Baidu, Microsoft are good at it too.

Secondly, the disadvantages of the Static URLs listed byu Google are still based on the assumption of applying them incorrectly. But this assumption is unreasonable and ridiculous.

Thirdly, Google’s proposal is typical in their favor, to the detriment of users. URL with question mark parameters may help Google to read the content, but obviously not friendly for the user to get a general understanding of site structure and content in a few seconds. Look at these two web sites, which is more clear and easier to read, more likely to be clicked? No wonder the second one!

www.example.com/product/bin/answer.foo?language=en&productID=3&sid=98971298178906&cat=6198&&query=URL

www.example.com/product/men/shoes/index.html

And another important reason is m in the age of Web 2.0, long Dynamic URLs, is not conducive to commit to memory or copy to others by e-mail, or any other social networking sites.

In short, while Google’s proposal suggests keeping the Dynamic URLs, I prefer the contrary, Static URLs.

References:

http://www.webconfs.com/dynamic-urls-vs-static-urls-article-3.php

http://www.seozac.com/seo-tips/url-rewrite-google/

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