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Are Numbers in URLs Okay for SEO?

April 10, 2013

Hi Jill,
Numbers in the URL
I am wondering if numbers in URLs negatively affect SEO. For example, a URL like this:


We still have the keywords in the URL, but also a number coming before the keywords. Does the string of numbers detract in any way from the overall clean URL with keywords?

Thank you so much, love your newsletter!


++Jill's Response++

Hi Lydia,

Numbers in URLs in no way detract from the overall optimization of any given page. In fact, in order to be included in Google News, your URLs must contain numbers.

Therefore, you have absolutely nothing to worry about!



Jill Whalen has been an SEO Consultant and the CEO of Jill Whalen High Rankings, a Boston area SEO Company since 1995. Follow her on Twitter @JillWhalen

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Post Comment

 Arne van Elk said:
Hi Jill, you got me confused now (and curious as well :-)). Why should a URL have to contain numbers in order to be included in Google News? I don't think this is the case. True, a lot of articles in Google News actually have numbers in their URL's (often dates), but you'll also find URL's without them. Besides, what would be the rationale behind such a rule? What problem would be solved?

I checked the technical requirements on
but couldn't find a mention on the use of numbers in URL's.

BTW really appreciate your High Rankings Advisory writings, thanks!
 Jill Whalen said:
Arne see this info

"Article URLs. To make sure we only crawl new articles, please make sure your URLs are unique with at least 3 digits, and are permanent."

I should have referenced that within my original answer, sorry!
 Arne van Elk said:
Thanks Jill, so we probably have to look at it this way: it's best practice, but not absolutely necessary (after all you can still find URL's without numbers in Google News). Then again, if it speeds up indexation it's pretty important.

Note: the link is not working for me, maybe it's because I'm checking this on an iPad. Some Googling got me were you wanted me to go.
 Kenneth Kern said:
Hi Jill,
Thank you for the info on numbers in the url. I am in the process of choosing and purchasing a new domain name and needed to know if a number would effect SEO. Now I know that I can leave a number in my newly choosen url. I appreciate it. Thanks Again.
 Ryan said:
Misinformation. You always have had the ability to bypass the numbering requirement to get into Google News by submitting a Google News Sitemap (that's information directly from Google).

Also directly from Google in their "SEO Starter Guide":
"Avoid: using lengthy URLs with unnecessary parameters and session IDs"
"Google is good at crawling all types of URL structures, even if they're
quite complex, but spending the time to make your URLs as simple as
possible for both users and search engines can help"

Adding additional, unnecessary characters to your URLs DOES have a negative impact.