I recently had a friendly discussion with an associate of mine regarding the SEO value of having .html or .php as an extension to your web files. The premise was that .html files were “friendlier” for search engines (SE’s).

It prompted me to do some internal thinking and naturally, some research online via the big G.

So let’s put this rumor to rest. There is no search engine advantage to having a page extended with .html vs it being extended with .php. It’s that simple.

Search engines can’t possibly begin to give preference to one language over the other, considering that Hypertext markup language (HTML) is exactly that, a markup language and PHP is general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for Web development and can be embedded into HTML.

The same logic can be applied to:

  • asp vs. php
  • htm vs. html
  • etc…

One extension will not help you rank higher than the other – use the file extension that best suits your development needs. Surely, this topic is not covered in depth, for example, this post does not cover URLs with parameters which can have an adverse effect on your visibility. But we’ll save that for a future post.