Good and Bad Redirects for SEO
A redirect is a good way to let search engine spiders and users know about your new content. Search engine spiders will keep the old one in index and come back to it until they discover the new URL.
When to use a redirect?
Many companies and brands often register the “mistyped” domains and re-direct them to the “correct” location. Example: example.com and exmaple.com So when the user mistypes he will get to the right website. A few year ago Flickr.com bought Flicker.com due to losing traffic for mistyping.
In addition, brands buy several domain names to protect their brand name from buying their .net , .co.in or .in domain name. Say you have a website www.mydomain.com, you would like to register www.mydomain.net, www.mydomain.co.in. to kill the competition. Domain redirect is very popular among businesses.
Consequently, if two websites merge, if you have broken links that have traffic and backlinks, or if you want a web page redirect to a new domain, the right redirect should be used. Any of URL’s change that impacts a domain name and a content URL requires a redirect.
There are two major redirect types known as good (seo redirects) and bad redirects.
- “301 moved permanently”
You tell users and search engines that the content was permanently moved to another location and there’s no any intent to bring it back.
- “302 moved temporarily”
This http redirect code tells a browser and search engine crawlers that the resource is moved temporarily and it should not be treated as a permanent.
Both of this redirects are interpreted in two absolutely different ways. When a search engine crawler sees a 301 permanent redirect, it passes the historical link juice and other metrics associated with that URL to reach the new one. Then it replaces the old redirect with the new one. Note that the preservation of historical link juice is crucially important in SEO.
If you use 302 for your pages, you will have to put efforts in link building and start from scratch again, as it does not pass historical link juice. 302 can bring another issue, it may not replace the old URL with a new redirected one, so the old URL will be competing with the new one for rankings in search engines.
There are some other bad redirects such as 404 redirect (Page not found) and 200 OK (page load successfully) . These two are also problematic, make sure you use 301 redirect whenever you make a permanent change to a page’s location.