Dangers of using Dynamic URLs

March 5, 2008 by admin

While content management systems have made it simple to add new products to your ecommerce store, they create such long and complicated URLs for each product that search engines sometimes have trouble spidering them.

For example, if you are on a Linux server, your product URLs might look like this:

http://www.example.com/catalog.php?cat=keyword&product_id=3458

If you are on a Windows server, your URLs could look like this:

http://www.example.com/Product.aspx?ProductID=3458

In reality, dynamic URLs are often much longer and more complicated than those examples above, and search engine spiders sometimes consider these addresses too complicated to index.

However, there is a solution. If you are on a Linux server, you can use mod_Rewrite rules in the Apache .htaccess file to perform 301 (permanent) redirects from the old, complicated URLs to simple ones, in which the product keyword is apparent.

For example, here is an example of a shortened, static, search-engine friendly URL that can be created for each product using rewrite rules:

http://example.com/products/keyword-3458.html

If you are using a Windows server, there is a similar procedure using ISAPI_Rewrite, which acts very much like Apache’s mod_Rewrite, but is designed specifically for Microsoft’s Internet Information Server (IIS).

For more information about constructing rewrite rules on your server to shorten your dynamic URLs into static URLs, contact your system administrator or SEOP representative.

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Dynamic URLs

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