Under Settings in your WordPress dashboard is where you can take some control over the way WordPress presents your URLs to the world. Don’t settle for defaults! Seize the permalink structure.

The default on a new site produces URLs via the “Day and Name” format:

http://somenewsite.info/2021/03/24/i-just-wrote-a-new-post-with-a-really-long-title-is-that-a-problem

It is based on the year, month, and date it was published plus a long string made by taking the title, converting to lowercase, and replacing blanks with “-“

This can be handy because just by looking you know when it was published. Still, some people choose just the post name format as the date maybe does not matter to them.

http://somenewsite.info/i-just-wrote-a-new-post-with-a-really-long-title-is-that-a-problem

The SEO (Search Engine Optimizing) keeners will say this is good to get lost of words in the search engine.

Me? I loathe long URLs. So you can be deft at editing the “slug” the part of the web address. I usually do this, but sometimes forget.

This puts the naming of the URLs in your own hands

Chop down those long URLs yourself! Make your own slugs.

But there are times when you want a very different kind. On many of my SPLOT sites, I use a custom structure to get the shortest possible links (just using the post ID)

Cryptic URLs work here because in a media collection site it is not too important to know the content from the URL.

Which produces compact URLs like https://splot.ca/collector/683/ or https://splot.ca/collector/566/

You can make up URL structures that include the authors ser name, category for a post, or time down to hour, minute, seconds (I would be curious to know how that is used).

Oh, here is a bonus. If you ever experience weird issues on your WordPress site were none of the links from your home page seem to work, just go to the Permalink settings and click “save”. This can fix issues in the part of WordPress that creates the mapping of human readable URLs to WordPress ones.

See Also


Screenshot of WordPress permalink settings atop the Clue Board photo I took and modified to have WordPress named rooms, let’s share this one as CC BY. Professor WordPress figure from Open Peeps but sporting a WordPress logo.
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