Currently considering a couple different URL schemes for pagination:

/blog/       -> First result page
/blog/1/     -> First result page
/blog/2/     -> Second result page

Another possibility:

/blog/            -> First result page
/blog/page/1/     -> First result page
/blog/page/2/     -> Second result page

The problem with the first one is that the page-number could be mistaken for an article id by the user.

The problem with the second one is that another url segment is needed, which is also bad for SEO.

Alo should the pagenumbers be used in the URL? Or rather the article offset?

Pros? Cons? Any thoughts?

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    Is this really a UX issue? I don't think the average user is really going to be that bothered about the format of the URL. Your SEO issue might be more appropriate for Webmasters – ChrisF Jan 12 '12 at 15:34
  • This is SEO related, not UX. How many people actually read these URLs? – Schroedingers Cat Jan 12 '12 at 15:36
  • 2
    I disagree, I think this can be UX related in the sense that IA is a component of UX and people definitely do read urls given that they're the way to access information on the internet. However, you may get better answers on Webmasters, so I recommend asking there as well. – Rahul Jan 12 '12 at 15:37
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    "is this really a UX issue?" It ABSOLUTELY is. Have you never had to type a URL? Read one? Look at one? The URL is a fundamental part of user experience on the web. – DA01 Jan 12 '12 at 19:39
  • @DA01: Have you never had to type a URL? Almost never except when typing domain name-only URL; when typing a URL that have other parts, 95% of the time I clicked on them and the remaining 5% I copy-pasted. – Lie Ryan Jan 17 '12 at 11:42

If the article's URL is the slug, then the /1 shouldn't be mistaken as an article ID.

/blog/article-title  -> is an article
/blog/2              -> is a page

From a UX point of view, /blog/page/2 does make more sense: if for example the URL is shared, the reader can better guess what is the content going to be. Even if putting more keywords in the URL is bad for SEO, the only keywords in this URL are going to be blog and the domain name, then there isn't much to loose if you add one keyword more.

In conlusion: /blog/page/X has a better usability that outbalances the possible SEO penalization of having (just) one more keyword.

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The UX perspective is that URLs should be readable & comprehensible by humans as possible. Thus, /blog/page/2 is the better choice for pagination link structure. Also, make sure that /blog/page and /blog/page/1 point to the same location because some users like to experiment with URLs.

As for SEO, since I'm not an expert in the field, I've "consulted" with the experts (looked at the URL structures on their sites). Smashing Magazine and Neil Patel both use the same /page/X system. If it's good for them, it must be good for everyone else. Besides, SEO concerns links to articles, which are permanent, not your pagination, which changes as more content is added, so you should spend more time on the article URL nomenclature.

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The problem I see with the format below is that "page" does not exist:

/blog/            -> First result page
/blog/page/1/     -> First result page
/blog/page/2/     -> Second result page

If you were to navigate to /blog/page/ you get a 404.

This occurs on smashing magazine referenced by dnbrv.

(I suspect that it is not an intentional decision by smashing mag, but rather a function of their CMS).

I think it would be better to ensure that your URLs return valid content as you deconstruct them, so I would instead use:

/blog/            -> First result page
/blog/page-1/     -> 301 redirect to canonical URL
/blog/page-2/     -> Second result page

Additionally, for SEO reasons, I don't think the first page should have two URLs. I would either not allow the pagination UI element to ever point to anything but the canonical URL for the first page and ave a 301 redirect if for some reason a user attempts to access /blog/page-1/.

Note: The latter (redirect) is what happens on smashing magazine if you go to ~/page/1/

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  • A page is a resource. It is not rooted in the ORM, but it is a resource regardless. Thus, /blog/page/2 is fine. Besides that, the 301 solution is fine and right. – New Alexandria Mar 24 '13 at 19:54

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