You definitely don’t have to use a trailing slash. If you must have one there’s a configuration issue in the .htaccess most likely. I’m not saying it’s messed up, but it could be improved if that’s what you want.
- Google sees the two as separate urls.
- Google also doesn’t prefer on over the other.
- We use htaccess rewrite rules to make everything resolve to our chosen vanity URL.
- This is how all of the major CMS’s do it. Sometimes they give you the option to keep or omit the trailing slash. Then they adjust the Htaccess accordingly.
It’s no different that using www or not. These are separate urls to Google. A rewrite is used to send all traffic to your preference.
The answer to why would you use a trailing slash is because it creates an empty url segment to target. Many CMS’s these url segments in the code in some cases trailing slash may be preferred but be mindful that you should make a redirect if you care about analytics.
I would probably never use the Blocs method for clean urls. I think it was a good move for sure, but one of the first things I did upon using blocs was write htaccess that fills all those needs and then some. It’s still the cleanest way to go. There are no subfolders needed and adding additional segments is trivial.