Convert Drupal URL's to SEO friendly
December 21, 2009 9:55 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for an explanation of how to convert a Drupal URL to a more SEO-friendly URL.

I'm likely to be asked to do updates and changes on a Drupal-based website. I'm just starting my learning curve with respect to Drupal.

I can see the website has a mix of SEO-friendly URL's (domain/general-category/specific-pagename.htm) and URL's with 'node in them (domain/node/56).

I've recommended that the pages with non-SEO friendly URL's be updated to friendly ones. So far I've found that to create a SEO friendly URL I need to alias the node, but what that process actually is I don't know.

I'm going to be queried on this process. I need the general overview so I can give some semblance of knowing what I'm doing while I get up to speed on this.
posted by diode to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Turn on the Path module (it's an optional core module). Then you can alias nodes.

You can also install the Pathauto module, which will automatically create pretty URLs for content as the content is created, and can be used to bulk-generate aliases for existing content.
posted by bricoleur at 10:01 AM on December 21, 2009

I suggest the Pathauto module.

You can set it up to create SEO-friendly URLs, and it can do it based on different content types, so that you can have for example:

/blog/foo-bar, and

all created automatically! It is very flexible. You also have the option to create aliases for nodes already created.
posted by soroush at 10:03 AM on December 21, 2009

Be sure to check out the SEO Checklist module, too.
posted by scottatdrake at 10:44 AM on December 21, 2009

There are three modules that you want to use. The core "Path" module, already mentioned above, provides the ability to create SEO friendly paths.

Pathauto, also mentioned above, will automate the creation of these paths for new and existing content.

Finally, Global Redirect will ensure that if anyone use the old non-SEO-friendly URLs, they will get 301 redirected. (Drupal default would still show the content at the old URL too, which can be bad for ranking, they tell me.)
posted by Nothing at 10:58 AM on December 21, 2009

Drupal has different types of content. The default types are Page and Story but there are likely other custom types defined depending on the sites requirements. As soroush mentioned, the Pathauto module can use different patterns for each content type. It sounds like the website may already have the Pathauto module enabled but these aliases have only been configured for certain content types.
posted by Gomez_in_the_South at 11:10 AM on December 21, 2009

Yes, definitely Pathauto + Global Redirect. Also SEO-related: you may also be interested in the XML Sitemap module.

One caveat with Pathauto: the 'Update Action' setting controls whether a not a friendly URL will be re-generated if the node changes (for example, if you retitle a node from "Foo" to "About Foo", its Pathauto-generated URL might change from pages/foo to pages/about-foo) Once your content is more or less stable, you'll probably want to set this option to 'Do nothing. Leave the old alias intact.' so that previously-indexed pages don't disappear.
posted by usonian at 12:53 PM on December 21, 2009

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