The Basics of Permalinks

Permalinks are permanent URLs for your posts, categories, pages and other postings. The importance of the link being “permanent” is so that your readers can find, share and revisit an article without the link ever changing.

In This Article

Structures

WordPress has a default permalink structure that will automatically be used for your postings.

Default Structure Example: http:/mywebsite.com/?p=12

In the default structure your domain would replace mywebsite.com and your actual post ID would replace 12. However, the important thing to note is that default permalink structure uses the Post ID.

You can change structure of all your permalinks by clicking the link "Change Permalinks" from the edit post page or by visiting Settings > Permalinks. Select the radio button for the desired Permalink structure underCommon Settings. Other structures beyond the default with post ID include those organized by day and name, month and name, numeric, post name or you can create a custom permalink structure.

When creating your own Custom structure you’ll need to use the correct structure tags, below is a list of Common Structure Tags and how they should be entered in the custom field box. They can be used in conjunction with each other, but sure to separate structure tags with a black slash when entering in the Custom Structure text
box.

Also note that the Custom Structure already enters your site name, you just need to enter in the Structure tags (noted in bold below).

Example:
http://yourwebsite.com/edition /%postname%/%year%/`

Output Example:

http://yourwebsite.com/edition/top-ten-cities-to-live/2014

List of Custom Structure Tags

Below is a list of common custom structure tags that can be used when creating a custom Permalink structure.

Year

The year the post was published in will display.
Example: %year%

Day

The day that the post was published on will appear.
Example: %day%

Post Id

The unique WordPress Post ID will appear.
Example: %post_id%

Post Name

The post’s slug will display in the URL. WordPress automatically sets one if you do not set a custom one yourself. Example:  %postname%

Author

This will post the author’s slug, listed under “Username” via Users > All Users.
Example: %author%

Category

This will output the slug in the URL. If multiple categories are assigned to one post, the lowest numbered category will display.
Example: %category%

Tag

This will also output the associated slug.
Example: %tag%

Additional Tips

Please note that depending on the structures you use, you'll need to be certain your post names, categories, pages have unique titles or slugs. For example, if you're using the post name as your permalink structure all of your posts need to have unique titles, that way two posts don't share the same permalink and create an error.

If you're new to permalinks or your site already contains loads of posts and pages, it might be wise to stick with the default permalink structure until you have a better understanding of the changes being made.

For more about WordPress Posting basics, please visit the WordPress Codex