KB User's Guide - Documents Tab - CleanUrl Field

You may assign a CleanUrl for each new document based on its title. Using short, memorable URLs makes it easier for visitors to find and share your content. While the document title remains designed for display and human readability, its cleanUrl may be optimized for brevity or for consumption by search engines.

What is a CleanUrl?

A CleanUrl is the part of a URL which identifies the document using human-readable keywords.

The image below shows a KB document URL that has a descriptive title underlined in red.

Example url showing a descriptive title at the end of the url underlined in red

CleanUrls can be generated by the KB author from the document title and also can also be further edited. While the page title remains designed for display and human readability, the CleanUrl may be optimized for brevity or for consumption by search engine page results. Longer document titles may also be truncated to keep the final CleanUrl to a reasonable length.

Location of the CleanUrl Field

To find the CleanUrl field in a New Document, go to the KB Admin Tools > Documents tab > NewDoc link.  The CleanUrl field is located under the Title field. It is not a required field.

In the image below, we see an arrow pointing to the CleanUrl field in the Creating a New Document screen.

CleanUrl field located below the title field in the document editor screen

How to Make a CleanUrl for Your Document

  1. Enter a title in the Title field and click on the Make clean url link on the far right of the CleanUrl field.

    Document editor screen with a title filled in and the make clean url link circled in red

  2. The CleanUrl field will populate with the words in the title changed to all lower case, each word separated by dashes "-".  If you are satisfied with the results, continue editing the document as per your KB group's workflow.

populated cleanUrl field taking words from title and separating with dashes

Updating your CleanUrl

At the touch of a button, your document's url can become a friendlier url.

The image below, the Make clean url link, circled in red, was used to create a CleanUrl in an already existing document. The CleanUrl contains all the words in the Title, however they are all in lowercase and separated by dashes "-".

existing cleanUrl containing all words from the document's title

While your document Title may adhere to a specific naming standard, the Title based CleanUrl may not be all that informative. You may edit the CleanUrl to make it even more meaningful to your users.

  • Make updates to the CleanUrl field
  • Do NOT click on the Make clean url link, if you do, your update will be overwritten and the field will revert back to all the words in the Title separated by dashes format.
  • Instead, click on the Save changes or Submit button to save your changes.

    The image below shows the Title field populated with the KB Group's naming standard. The CleanUrl field below show how it has been modified from the title to be more meaningful to the user.

Updated CleanUrl field with a custom entered url

  • Note: After clicking on the Save change or Update button when you modifying your existing CleanUrl, please notify those you initially sent the CleanURL that it has been updated.

After you save your document, you will see the current CleanUrl field in the document information table while viewing your doc in Document Review Mode while in the KB Admin Tools. The image below shows the current CleanUrl in that document.

Document information table from the Document review mode highlighting the updated CleanURL

Any words you add to the CleanUrl that are not found in the Title field will automatically be added to the Keywords field. In the image below, the words that are not found in the Title field that were added to the CleanUrl field "docs" and "group" has been added to the keywords.

Keywords field including the words docs and group that are in the CleanUrl but not the title

Your keyword updates will be captured in the Revision History. In the image below, the two keywords that were added as a result of the CleanUrl update are circled in red.

Revisions history screen highlighting that the keywords docs and group have been added to the document

When viewing the document in the Live Site(s), you will see that the CleanUrl has been added as a hotlink. It is found in the Document Information Table at the bottom of the document. 

In the image below, you will see the CleanURL circled in red beneath the Sites filed in the Document Information Table of a Live document.. 


The CleanURL is friendly and easy to remember. You may copy and paste the link into emails, chat windows and other communiques. The CleanURL helps cut down on typos because there is less confusion about what exactly to write and type.

Characters and Word specification in your CleanUrl

  • Must be between 3 and 200 characters
  • ASCII characters only
  • Only special character allowed is the dash (-)
  • All accented characters, like "é" for example, are converted to ASCII type characters
  • Space(s) are allowed in a CleanUrl, however, they will be converted to dash(es) upon clicking Save Change/Submit button.
  • Words that are contractions will be converted, for example; I'll > ill; don't > dont; can't > cant, etc.

CleanUrl Uniqueness Not Enforced

KB Admins need not worry whether their CleanUrl is unique or not. Uniqueness is not enforced.

In the image below, a search was performed on the Wisconsin Unified site at https://kb.wisc.edu. The CleanUrl, "training-document" was typed in the browser. Three documents with the same CleanUrl appeared. Each document is owned by a different KB Group.

The image below shows the live site. In the URL field, is https://kb.wisc.edu/training-document. The Search field shows the document IDs of three documents that have the same CleanURL. There is a red box around the site names, all of which are different.

Unified KB results when a non-unique cleanUrl is entered resulting in three different documents all with the same cleanurl

The URL displayed in the browser immediately changes to list the 3 document ID numbers that have identical CleanUrls. In the image below, you will see the CleanUrl is replaced by 3 document ID numbers circled in red.

Unified KB results showing an updated url with the document ids that matched the searched cleanurl

Best Practices When Using the terms "Internal" or "External" in the CleanUrl

"Internal" in the CleanUrl Field

You may enter the single word "internal" in the CleanUrl field. However, since the word "internal" appears in the document URL (e.g. when a document is saved to the internal KB site), the KB System appends the Document ID number to the word "internal". There is no space in between the word "internal" and the Document ID.

The first image below shows document 115560 with the single word "internal" in the CleanUrl field. Once the Save Change or Submit button was clicked, the KB System appended the CleanUrl with the Document ID, "115560". Note that there is not a space between "internal" and the Document ID number in the second image below. Additionally, since "internal115560" does not appear in the Title, it is also appended to the Keywords list.

CleanUrl updated to have the single word internal

CleanUrl field after being saved or submitted showing internal115560

"External" in the CleanUrl Field

You may enter the single word "external" in the CleanUrl field.

The image below shows the single word "external" in the CleanUrl field of document 52054.


When you call the document up on either of your Live KB Sites, the CleanURL will present your KB Group Space name and the word "external" in the Document Information Table located at the bottom of the page..

The image below shows a Live Site side-by-side comparison of both CleanURL fields for document 52054. On the left, the Internal Site document presents a CleanURL of https://kb.wisc.edu/kbGuide/internal/external. The Public Site on the right presents a CleanURL of https://kb.wisc.edu/kbGuide/external.

Comparison of internal and external live sites showing a KB document with the clean url external

Keywords:url slug clean url cleanurl SEO users semantic user friendly user-friendly seo-friendly seo friendly improve usability accessibility human-readable human readable keywords name of the resource designed for display generated slug vanity URL   Doc ID:52054
Owner:Leah S.Group:KB User's Guide
Created:2015-06-08 12:28 CDTUpdated:2022-06-17 12:11 CDT
Sites:KB User's Guide
Feedback:  0   0