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WordPress permalink settings allow you to customise the structure of URLs for your website’s posts and pages. You want to make sure the setting is correct when you set up your blog and this post will explain which setting to use and why.

Scrabble pieces forming the word WordPress

What is a Permalink?

Permalinks are the permanent URLs to individual pages and posts, as well as category and tag archives, on your website. It’s the address that users and search engines use to find your content. Having optimised permalink settings is important for both SEO rankings and user experience.

Choosing the Right Permalink Structure

WordPress offers several preset permalink structures, each with its own characteristics as you can see in the image below:

Permalink Settings

Plain: This option uses a basic URL structure with query parameters. It’s not recommended for SEO or user-friendly URLs. (e.g.,

Day and Name: Includes the year, month, day, and post title slug (e.g.,

Month and Name: Similar to the previous option but excludes the day.

Numeric: Uses the Post ID under a generic Archives permalink (e.g.,

Post Name (Best Option): Only the post title slug appears after the primary domain (e.g.,

Additionally, you can create a custom structure using various tags:

  • %year%: Publication year (4 digits).
  • %monthnum%: Publication month (2 digits).
  • %day%: Publication day (2 digits).
  • %postname%: Post title slug.
  • %category%: Full category slug.
  • %author%: Author name slug.

Best Practices for Permalink Settings

Use Post Name

For most sites, the /postname/ option is recommended. URLs with the post name are better for SEO, easy for users to remember and search engines to index.

What to Avoid

Blog posts with date-based URLs can feel outdated, even if the information remains relevant. This can deter users from clicking on older posts, thinking they are no longer valuable.

There are situations where using dates in URLs can be beneficial, for example, if your blog primarily publishes news or time-sensitive content, including dates in URLs can help users quickly identify the publication date and relevance of the information.

Unless you have a specific reason, avoid including categories in permalinks. Shorter URLs are better.

Where to Find Permalinks in WordPress

From the left-hand menu click on ‘Settings’ then ‘Permalinks’:

Permalink settings

You will then see the following options:

Permalink settings options.

Make sure it’s set to either ‘Post Name’ or a custom structure. Ensure that the Custom Structure contains ‘%postname%’. These options are essentially the same. You may find that it’s already set to ‘Post Name’ by default after installing WordPress.

Having your links set like this is simple, straightforward, better for SEO and intelligible to humans.

Once you have completed this, save your settings.

Remember that permalink settings impact not only your site’s SEO but also the user experience. Choose wisely, and your content will be more accessible and shareable.

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Learn how to optimise your WordPress permalink settings for better SEO and user experience. Choose the best structure for success.

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