SEO: What's your view on date in permalinks?

Obviously, most people avoid using dates in permalinks. Example: exmaple.com/2021/06/post-name

I also use to avoid dates in permalinks. And the results are good.
I have seen a couple of blogger sites which are ranking with date in the permalink. And even their ranking positions are pretty good.

Having a date or avoid them in permalinks anyhow impacts on SEO?

just want to know your view or experience.

If you are creating news or content that has a lifespan of less than one year then having or not having a date doesn’t matter much.

But making permalink long and complicated can have negative user experience and decrease ctr.

And if your content is evergreen then you shouldn’t have permalink at all! That’s like you are saying user and google that the content is old after a year or two. And you don’t want that!

Yeah, @saurav_556 That’s why I avoid dates in the permalink. But Google has not said ever that having dates decreases the importance of the article over time.
In fact I can still see some sites are ranking on higher KD with blogger and having dates in their permalinks.
This somehow creating doubts.

Permalinks show post date properly but in many sites, but some sites do not show post date.

Dates in permalinks is an old method of permalinks. It used to be done by News sites which published a lot of content and like media, uploaded it into date based folders. That was before CMS like wordpress. Naturally wordpress initially adapted the same system of having date based url structure. But as more content began being created, google started putting its own seo standards in place. One of the standards is putting ur keyword in url. Everyone will recommend u to do this. Thats why the POSTNAME permalink started being used.

In current phase, date based permalink makes no sense.

  1. U change or update the article, the url changes. U need to check the latest standards on a staging site. At least a couple of years back that was the case. So if u update old articles, ur url will result in 404 error. U will have to deal with messy 301 redirects. One of the best tactics of news sites is that they update news articles to Evergreen articles after 3-4 months. If you are using Yoast pro, you can output news schema initially and change it to article schema later, converting news to Evergreen. So if ur URL is date based url, the url will change and u lose link equity.
  2. Google does pick date from various sources. If u hide dates completely from post, google will pick the date from comments. If u hide it in comments, google will search other places it can pick date from. So if u update the article and post url doesnt change, likely that google will pick the older date for the article. In this case, the date is in permalink so google will pick it from there. This is useful only if u are going for a site that doesnt show any dates (Evergreen sites do use these tactics)
  3. If u look at sites like forbes or entrepreneur they use an article numbering system instead of dates. Now sites like these have like teams of SEO’s on board. heres the recent post structure - https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/378596 - I disagree with this structure because of lack of keyword in it.
  4. Keyword in url is a strong SEO ranking factor. So permalink with ur brand name + Keyword. Example yoursite.com/keyword/ - this is best
  5. If u are building a small site then even better is site.com/category/keyword. This makes more sense to google. Especially for e-commerce sites.

These were my feedback on dates in permalinks.

1 Like