A URL is the “address” for each page on a website. Website navigation, search engines, marketing materials and other websites all use a page’s URL to direct people to that page. Worded correctly, it helps the page appear higher in search engine results.

Purpose and audience

Besides being the page’s address, the wording of a URL should reflect the key topic of the page. This helps the page’s SEO (Search Engine Optimization), so it will appear higher in search results. Page URLs should be planned carefully with marketing and SEO in mind. Once set, URLs should not be changed unless absolutely necessary, to avoid breaking links and harming the page’s rankings in search engine results.

Creating URLs

Page URLs should:

  • Be concise and have meaning to the user
  • Employ dashes between words instead of spaces or underscores:
    • keene.edu/alumni/services/lodging-discounts/
    • paulcollege.unh.edu/executive-development-programs
    • plymouth.edu/current-students/
  • Be lowercase. Intermittent use of uppercase letters can be confusing for users and disrupt SEO

Page URLs should NOT:

  • Include years or dates unless necessary for archiving. URLs with dates by nature require changing every year, which would cause the link to break.
  • Include acronyms unless universally recognized: unh.edu/hr/

Changing URLs

URLs should only be changed with careful consideration. Read more about changing page URLs.


For support, questions, or to request a URL redirect, please contact ET&S.


Anyone working on a Drupal website is welcome to attend the open walk-in training and help sessions that ET&S offers. For a list of upcoming walk-in times, see the Drupal Walk-in session schedule.

Responsibility for content

USNH websites are maintained by members of the university system community acting as official representatives of the University System of New Hampshire. Editors are responsible for creating and editing URLs as described in this standard and are responsible for complying with all relevant laws and university system policies.


Although USNH ET&S does not monitor or regularly review site content, it reserves the right to remove at any time any content that it considers to violate this standard or any other USNH policies.

If inappropriate or inaccurate content is submitted, USNH ET&S will contact the site owner to discuss the issue. If the site or content owner cannot be contacted or is no longer at USNH, that content will be administered by ET&S and can be removed if deemed inaccurate or inappropriate. When content is obviously unacceptable, USNH ET&S will immediately remove the content prior to contacting the site owner. Unacceptable entries also may cause website access to be suspended.

Reports regarding inappropriate content may be sent to USNH ET&S.