For the Newbies, I’ll take the time to ask and answer one important question before we start…
What is a URL?
URL means: Uniform Resource Locator (Acronym)
URL is the address of a World Wide Web page., that is, a website full or complete address that leads to a page or the other.
Example can be
In SEO, there are lots of long-running debates.
1 such subject of debate: does URL capitalization really matter for SEO?
Read on as we attempt to clean some of this confusion.
that is why the term”it depends” gets thrown around so frequently in our market when answering inquiries.
One such subject of debate: does URL capitalization really a thing for SEO?
Read on as we try to clean some of the confusion.
While I think this is an oversimplification of things, let us take into Account exactly what Jennifer Slegg states :
“So Google does not think about letter case in itself as an SEO problem, but you should keep it consistent throughout individual URLs, because Google believes URLs to become case-sensitive. This means, if you’ve got the same page reachable and indexable (without canonicals) as example.com/PAGE.html and example.com/page.html, Google can crawl those URLs along with the one which you are interested in being ranked may not be the one Google chooses. You could also wind up splitting ranking signals between the two pages.
That having been said, many believe that URLs that utilize upper case letters or all CAPS, with the exception of the domain name itself for style reasons, can appear cluttered. And if it’s a URL someone could type into a browser, most would default to completely lower case, instead of using capital letters, something which might be important for those who do offline advertising also.”
She has a point. Should you employ capitalizations in URLs across your site in addition to normal URLs, it may create a scenario where you’re self-creating replicate content.
And this replicate content is what will harm you.
This is especially true if you link to those URLs, and you also don’t look closely at your URLs when linking.
While doing so on a bigger scale cannot necessarily hurt you, if done en masse on a large enough scale, it can cause significant harm to your SERP functionality.
That’s why it’s important to think about unique situations and the way these URLs can create duplicate content issues through capitalization in case you don’t handle them properly.
Many Search Engine Optimization professionals agree that you should:
Stick to one variant: The lowercase pattern is recommended (because there’ll always be individuals who will link to this more traditional version).
Use 301 redirects: If you visit URLs with capital letters enter index (someone connected to it or you changed your content management system and it capitalized some URLs). Let folks, hunt crawlers, and links go to non-capitalized URLs to avert any problems.
Abramillar.com States the next about URL capitalization and how it can affect SEO:
If the URL doesn’t automatically resolve to a version without capitals, and you’ve shared links that occasionally include capital letters and at times do not, then you will start having an issue.
Search engines crawl the respective pages of your site and assign trust and authority to every one of these based on several factors (like hyperlinks to your site ). If, for instance, you have two pages for each and every page of your site, you would be sharing the confidence and authority assigned between 2, rather than consolidating it into the 1 variant of every page.”
And while Mueller says you can pick whatever you want, this is exactly what he’s really saying:
Pick anything you want, but also use the same case throughout your site.
Do not mix and match instances, because then it’s possible to encounter significant difficulties.
Google considers capitalization, but when those issues become too much.
The thing about Twitter is that you have just a little amount of room to explain everything, and it would be counterproductive to list every single consideration above a string of tweets.
There is another difficulty that abramillar.com brings up, and that is the issue of excess 404s being created and generating many versions of a URL in Google Analytics:
“Along with all the page authority of your pages and ability of your site as a whole, URLs including uppercase letters will also be likely to be reported individually by Google Analytics and, as stated earlier, might end in 404 errors on the incorrect server.”
One discussion over in the Moz community talks about the way using URL capitalization can be a problem on a website:
The main reason is that there are figures from the URL that can, or may not, be capitalized based on user input.
A couple of examples are:
There are currently thousands of cases on the website.
Is this something I need to spend effort to attempt to resolve (may not be minor effort), or should I simply ignore it and move on?”
Marcus Miller suggests the following remedy for handling these replicate URLs:
Setup a rewrite rule to change all URLs to lowercase and 301 any non-lowercase ones, something similar to this in your htaccess should do the job assuming you’re using a LAMP environment.WARNING: ***DO NOT*** USE THIS CODE UNLESS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING. We’re NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT HAPPENS BY IMPLEMENTING THIS CODE IN YOUR HTACCESS FILE.
RewriteEngine On RewriteMap lc int:tolower RewriteCond %REQUEST_URI [A-Z] RewriteRule (.
Try to replace the hyperlinks so they all use lowercase. If this is a lively website it should be simple but otherwise, you can still do a series replacement across multiple files. You could write a small script to automate this if it is a huge job in the site (obviously ) URLs of course.
This arbitrary question was introduced to John Mueller with a user on Twitter, which Barry Schwartz coated over on SERoundtable.com. I wanted to add it here for completeness’ sake:
This is absolutely a funny method of addressing URLs and capitalization, but Mueller has a stage — capitalized URLs will not help you personally and can likely hurt you in the event that you use them without any discrimination and without careful consideration of these URLs are actually doing. Schwartz writes:
“Normally when people use CAPS in their own communication, it is either (a) that they want to be loudly or (b) they don’t have any idea how to turn off the caps lock.
Google does not know you want to be loud once you use caps in your URLs. In reality, I think Google recommends lowercase URLs because case technically may make for another URL.
But overall, lower case or upper case, it’s all exactly the same. If it comes to URLs, I would adhere with lower-case, but it won’t hurt you either way.”
A conversation over at StackOverflow.com has some Distinctive technical insights into the viability of URL capitalization and it can cause serious problems with your Search Engine Optimization implementation:
“I’ve seen many websites that most of them utilized lowercase in URLs such as
Why using uppercase is not more widespread? Is that a programming language problem?”
Other answers to this discussion stated:
“It is just convention. Capital letters are generally utilized in Wikipedia, YouTube and Twitter URLs when the article/channel/username has capital letters. All caps are seldom used because it’s deemed loud and harsh, but there is nothing technical preventing it.”
“I have seen buggy bots convert URLs to lowercase. This caused a very unique insect with code decompressing data encoded in the URL which was not supported, first. Some websites (especially reddit) use base-36 encoded IDs to avoid this.”
Yet Another answer writes:
“URLs are not case sensitive to a point.
A URL of Foo.Bar is going to be treated the same as foo.bar and FOO.BAR. However, if a URL includes characters of another case after the domain (. Bar in my case ), it’s likely that changing the event of those characters will result in an error.
Consequently, if a URL is provided as foo.bar/Baz, and you try to access foo.bar/baz, you hazard accessing the incorrect source or exceeding an error.
Bear in mind that URLs with forwarding slash characters after the domain name (as in foo.bar/baz) are handled (at least on the front ) as pointers to directories in a file system, and the case sensitivity will be dependent on the file system that the web server is using.”
As the above evidence shows, URL capitalization surely matters in SEO. It is simply not in how you believe in URL Capitalization SEO.
For instance, you can not change a URL to capitalized letters and expect it to immediately improve your rankings.
You can’t resolve all URL capitalizations and expect an immediate improvement in your SERP functionality overnight.
This is one of these fixes which helps your website indirectly like W3C valid code isn’t a ranking factor.
That’s why it’s important to evaluate your situation and make changes as it is possible to do so — don’t just make these changes on the fly and hope you will see a substantial improvement overnight.
But, implementing a strategic approach to fix URL capitalization issues across your site when they’re important will be a significant help to improve your search performance.