[wp-hackers] Rewriting search URL

Matthew Thomas mpt at myrealbox.com
Sun Apr 24 09:23:33 GMT 2005

Peak Discharge wrote:
> That changes my url into the form of http://www.unicorns.com/?s=string, 
> which is a progress. The aim, however is to change all search urls to 
> http://www.unicorns.com/search/string

Sorry to crash the coding party here, but could I just point out that 
this is rather a bad idea?

Because an URL like this doesn't have any "?"s in it, Google (and other 
search engines) won't know it's a page of search results, so whenever 
someone happens to link to it, search engines will index it *in addition 
to* the actual article pages. The end result will be that search engines 
are cluttered with result pages from your own search engine (indeed, 
I've seen sites trying to game Google using this technique). Worse, the 
results will often be irrelevant because they'll be plucking keywords 
from the summaries of several distinct Weblog entries.

If you want cruft-free search result URLs, I suggest aiming for 
something like <http://example.com/search?cat+pictures>. Same number of 
characters, but the ? tells indexers (and geeky humans, who should not 
be neglected) that the page quite probably isn't static writing.

Matthew Thomas

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