Thursday, December 6, 2007

Create "Smart Links" that dont suck

How many times have you come across a link like:

Let me ask you something, can you get any idea of what the link is about? Can you type the link by yourself? I am sure most of you will answer 'no' to both the questions. Clearly these links 'suck' and so as webmasters its our duty to create 'smart' links.

The rise of dynamic sites has made it convenient for new users to create their own sites. These dynamic blogging platforms and other CMS(like Wordpress and PHP-nuke etc.) have made the option of building a site open for those, who don't know much about web development.

I have nothing against these
CMS as they are only making the net a better place but I think one big inconvenience these sites create is the automatically generated senseless links created by such sites. These links are really confusing, they use weird characters(+, ? etc) and numbers which make no sense. The user has no idea what page he is being sent to till he actually reaches it and he wouldn't dare to remember or even type it as they are sooo big. And seeing the rate at which the Internet is expanding, there is a need to make cleaner links to reduce the complexity that may arise due to large volumes of sites and links.

In my opinion links should be self-explanatory for the convenience of the user. They should be
  • Descriptive of the content
  • Easy to remember
  • Guessable
  • And if possible short
  • Sans unnecessary usage of symbols and numbers
These are the characteristics of what I call 'smart links'


Unknown said...

Ganesh, nice blog you have here.

Kalyan said...

You have a point...but not with cms's..
I think you have never tried WordPress or PhpNuke or similar CMS,
They all have the sef url( search engine friendly ), almost every CMS has some or the other for it...
Anyways a thoughful post...great
kalyan (

Ganesh said...

Hi Kalyan,
I am familiar, that this feature is present in most cms. But the problem is that they arent enabled by default. They need to be enabled manyually and can cause some inconvinience to a new user.