A Short Guide to URLs
A URL is the web address that allows your site or blog to be found on the network. The acronym URL stands for: Uniform Resource Locator, and can be translated into Portuguese as: Uniform Resource Locator. The URLs consist of: scheme, subdomain, top-level domain, second-level domain, and subdirectory.
Digital Marketing is so full of tactics, strategies, action plans, and analysis tools that sometimes we fail to realize the importance of details.
But make no mistake, the details make all the difference to get results. And when we say results, we mean money in your pocket.
Certain elements seem so common and obvious that they go unnoticed, such as the URL. A lot of people don’t even know what it is, but we all use it every day.
A well-structured URL can greatly impact the digital strategy of any business. And the opposite is also true: neglecting this factor will make your business leave money on the table.
Want to know more about the URL and how to use it to your advantage with mastery? Let’s get into it!
What is a URL?
A URL is the address you enter to enter a website on the Internet or an intranet . The URL stands for: Uniform Resource Locator, which is defined as “Uniform Resource Locator.”
You can even tell that your site is the home of your internet business. In this context, the URL is your virtual address that anyone can use to visit you.
What is the role of a URL in digital marketing?
It may seem that the URL has no meaning within a digital strategy, but it couldn’t be further from the truth.
If your domain is too long, difficult to understand, or unrelated to the market you are in, many people may stop clicking on it.
In addition to clicks, it’s important to remember that a lot of people type a website address directly into their browser bar. And again, she is more unlikely to be able to (or want to) type in a very long or complicated name.
And finally, let’s consider how attractive your address is to the persona. A person who wants to know how to make more money will be more attracted to the site “fiquerico.com.br” than to the domain “office3xcon.com.br,” or something similar.
Each visit missed by any of the issues mentioned here is a potential sale that has been wasted. That’s why your URLs are so important that we write an article just to talk about them.
Understand the basic structure of a URL
The basic structure of a URL is made up of five elements. It is important that you understand them well enough to know what they are for and how to use them to your advantage.
It may sound silly, but even the most basic points of a URL can interfere with SEO and hence the amount of qualified traffic you will be able to attract.
Let’s get a better understanding of what makes one part of a URL and what points you need to consider when creating your own:
We call scheme the protocol that the web server must use to access the page.
The most common for websites and blogs is “http: //” and “https: //”. The first means “Hypertest Transfer Protocol,” and the second has the addition of the letter S, which represents “Secure” at the end.
Basically, it’s a way to tell the server “this is a website page, this is how you should look at it.”
This is because Google uses this protocol to increase the ranking of pages in its search engine.
Other protocols are “mailto: //”, which tells the server to send an email to the link in question and “ftp: //”, which is often used to transfer files from a computer to the server.
If your site is like a home and the URL is the address, then the subdomain is like a back door. It is built on the same ground but has its separate entrance. What does that mean?
In a way, Google views the subdomain as a separate site, and the subdirectory as a page of the same site. Nevertheless, it understands that the subdomain is linked to the parent domain.
If you are unsure which one to choose for your site, we wrote an article focused on subdomains and subdirectories.
This is the main part of your URL. Top-level domain (or just TLD) is the name of your site, so to speak.
To use an earlier example, in the URL “fiquerico.com.br” the TLD is “fiquerico.” In this blog, the TLD is “content marketing.” There is no doubt that the top-level domain, which we will refer to as the domain from now on, is the most important part of the URL.
It is responsible for effectively communicating your company’s message in a nutshell . The domain is usually composed of the company name, but it can also be a campaign-based catchphrase.
For example, MRV recently ran a facilitated funding campaign in which it created the website “euodeiopagaraluguel.com.br.” The domain is all about the campaign proposal, even though it doesn’t speak directly about the brand.
The second-level domain is more popularly known as extension. It’s the “.com.” “.Com.br,” “.Edu,”,“.Gov,” and so on.
This part is also often ignored, but it makes a difference. Extensions are designed to target sites by purpose and region, but today are even used to compose company names.
The extension “.com” is for business addresses, “.org” for non-profit organizations, “.edu” is for educational institutions, etc.
Domains with “.br” (.com.br, .gov.br, .ind.br) are related to Brazil, just as a “.us” domain is from the USA, “.ca” is from Canada, “.de” is from Germany and so on.
Finally comes the subdirectory, which represents the internal pages of your site. The domain “mysite.com/contact” represents the contact page within mysite.com.
The structure of subdirectories is almost unlimited, and only depends on the size of your site.
An e-commerce site with dozens of categories and thousands of products will need a clear subdirectory structure for each part of the site.
4 steps to creating optimized and customized URLs for your business.
A well-chosen URL has the potential to attract much higher turnover for your business.
Best of all, you don’t have to spend a lot of time or money, just make the right optimizations.
But what optimizations are these? Here’s a simple, practical walkthrough for you to create custom, optimized URLS to get the best possible ROI from your site:
1. Choose a domain that represents your niche market
We’ve talked about this here, but it’s important to remember: your domain is key to making people attracted to your site and want to access it.
Choose a domain name that best represents your niche market, or preferably choose your company name to a good extent, such as “.com” or “.com.br.”
2. Choose easy and convincing words for subdirectories.
Semantics are critical to getting along with search engines today. So don’t fall into the trap of leaving the internal pages of your site with subdirectories that no one understands.
Also, when customizing landing page URLs, use convincing words such as “/ download-ebook” or “buy now.”
Users will be more inclined to click on them, and Google can rank them in better positions.
3. Make your URL short (whenever possible)
If possible, leave your URL short. This will make it easier for users to remember it, even if they can’t access it immediately or have no place to write down the address.
Of course this will not always be viable. In such cases, prioritize semantics. Even a longer URL can be easily remembered and accessed if it is clear and uncomplicated.
4. Customize the links for each platform you share them on.
When sharing your links on social networks or business cards, the original URL, even if well optimized, may not be the best choice.
You can use a URL shortener and customize the link with a short word that encourages the person to take action.
In addition, these shorteners offer click tracking and other information about users who access content from short links, which can give you a good strategic advantage.
Who would have thought that a URL would be so important to your marketing strategy? Now that you know this, it’s time to get your hands dirty and do everything to attract the right people to your site.