Anatomy of a URL

Posted in Glossary by Jon Payne

When you're creating a website for the first time or redeveloping one your web developers and your SEO (if you're lucky enough to have a half decent one) will be talking about domain names, URLs, secure servers and all sorts of confusing stuff. This set of articles should give you a pretty decent overview of what they're on about and why some of it might even be important. Like business critical levels of important.

What is a URL?

URL stands for Universal Resource Locator. The technical definition of URL is quite nuanced, however, no-one except Computer Science graduates needs to worry about that. To most of us, URL is synonymous with “web address”. In fact, “address” is a very apt term, as a URL specifies the exact means of finding and accessing an online resource.

Anatomy of a URL

Like a Postal Address, a URL is composed of a number elements.

Anatomy of a URL


Click to learn more about:

After the file type you'll often see &, #, ? and other odd looking symbols and while these are technically part of the URL, they often change based on what filters you use on ecommerce stores or what advert you've clicked to arrive there in the first place, so unless you're spending more than half your working life in digital marketing, then you can probably ignore them. If you're desperate to know, hit us up on Twitter. We'll see you right.


Jon Payne
Jon Payne

Founder and Technical Director of Noisy Little Monkey, Jon blogs about SEO and digital marketing strategy.

Meet Jon Payne

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