A URL (Uniform Resource Locator) – also known as a web address or path – is created by the WCMS when content is saved.
It is recommended that you let the WCMS automatically generate a URL.
When automatically generated, the URL will contain a segment for any parent(s) in the hierarchy above your content, followed by the current content segment, which is determined by the content heading field. URL segments are the parts of a URL delimited by slashes. Each segment will truncate text if it exceeds 60 characters; the entire URL will be truncated if it exceeds 255 characters.
Looking at the current web page, for example, you will see that its parent's URL is https://uwaterloo.ca/web-resources/wcms-users/training-and-support/wcms-how-documents. This page's title is URL changes when moving or renaming content. Therefore, this page gets the following URL:
What you need to know about URL changes
If content is renamed (the heading changed) or the parent is changed using the content editing page, the URL of the page will change immediately. If the page has any children, their URL will change the next time they are edited and saved.
If content is moved away from its current parent using the menu "list links" page, the URL of the page will change the next time the content is edited and saved. If the page has any children, once this page has been edited and saved, their URL will change the next time they are edited and saved.
If a URL path has changed you should:
- Immediately resave any items (parents and any children) affected by a menu change or a renaming.
- Clear all caches to update any internal links.
- Set up redirects for all URL paths that have changed.
It is always best practice when URLs change to create a redirect from the old URL to the new URL – you never know how many people will have bookmarked the old URL or have links to the old URL in their web pages.
If, after some time has passed (we recommend at least a month), you find that these redirects aren’t being used – your redirect page will tell you this – you can delete the redirects in relative safety.
A note about Archiving content
Archived content is removed from the site hierarchy, and any content contained underneath will move one level up. When you archive an item its children will have changed paths the next time they are saved.
If you are intending to remove access to the children, you should archive the children as well; otherwise, they are still findable by search engines and reachable through user bookmarks.
If you want the children to remain available, you should resave the children so they get their new path right away, and set up redirects from the old path to the new path.