Ding dong, go away: Removing pesky numbers from WordPress permalinks

ding dong Photo Steve DavisEver had someone pester your home or phone or email and no matter what you try you cannot seem to ‘delete’ them from your life?

A WordPress user had a similar feeling this week after he re-created some pages and could not remove some numerals from his Permalink or page URL.

Here is what happened, what to look for, and how to fix it.

In WordPress, every Page has a name

In your WordPress website, every Page and blog Post has a unique web address.

This post has bakermarketingservices.com/2013/11/ding-dong-go-away-removing-pesky-numbers-from-WordPress-permalinks

If you look at your Pages, too, they have unique addresses made up of your domain name and the page title (at least they should if your website has been configured properly).

To keep these unique Permalinks or URLs or web addresses working, WordPress takes the naming protocol very seriously and if you create a Page or Post with an identical name, it will add a 1 or 2 or 3 to the end of the address.

This little trick keeps your site humming soundly.

But I deleted it

This week, a client contacted me after ‘fiddling’ with his WordPress site and trying to create a Page to sit under a new Page on his menu.

Because he was working late at night, he made a few errors with Page design and placement so he deleted it and started again.

However, his new versions of the Page all had numbers being added to the end of their Permalinks.

In frustration, he asked for help and I was able to tell him that while he had MOVED his old Pages to the Trash, they were still sitting within WordPress.

This double-delete system has been a god send over the years – saving many webmasters from the pain of clicking delete too quickly

All we had to do to restore my client’s Page links to their full, SEO glory, without numbers on the end, was the following:

  1. Go to Pages > All Pages > Trash and choose to delete the unwanted Pages permanently.
  2. Return to the new Page and edit its Permalink which you can do directly under the Page title box. Just delete the 1 or 2 or 3, Update the Page, and you are done.

Hope that helps.

If not, I can always pay a home visit. Ding dong.



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