SEO Redirect

Redirects – Complete Guide and it’s Impacts SEO Performance

Ashkar Gomez
11min read
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In SEO practice, you tend to change the URL of a web page. The pages can be removed. Perhaps a new (hopefully improved) domain name has been acquired.

When content is moved to a different URL, redirects are advantageous for SEO because they keep the content visible and assist in maintaining the link value from the original page. 

The link value will slowly “decay” with each redirect. Redirect chains will so suffer link value.

A redirect is a technique for sending traffic from a requested URL to another. In this article, let us see how and when it works.

What is a Redirect?

A redirect means an HTTP response instructing the user to go to a different landing page. It notifies the robots and your search engine that the content they are seeking has either been moved temporarily or permanently.

Redirects (or redirections) can appear on the client or the server. It is necessary to utilize them whenever we wish to transmit information from one URL to another (or redirect) a user or bot search engine.

  • Changing a website’s domain
  • Redirecting traffic while you do necessary server maintenance
  • Combining redundant or unnecessary stuff
  • Directing users to a new version of content from an older one

A redirect allows you to provide a good user experience to visitors trying to access a website that could normally display an error. Users are less likely to return to your site after locating error pages since they bounce or exit the page.

When deciding how to rank sites, Google uses various ranking signals, many of which are unknown to us. PageRank (the quality and amount of links directing to a website), mobile friendliness, and online performance are some ranking factors used by Google.

The ranking signals gathered for the previous page may be transferred to the new page by establishing redirects.

How Do Redirects Work?

When you type a website or words into your web browser, the browser sends a request to the server. Upon receiving the request from the web browser, the server redirects it to the requested page. The redirect instructs the server to display another page instead of the one you asked for.

For example, if you requested Blue, the server would respond by telling you Blue is no longer available, but we could give you Green instead. You will then be delivered to the Green page, which offers a better user experience.

Why Should You Use Redirects?

Redirects are necessary whenever a page changes its URL. They allow to avoid 404 errors and ensure the ideal user experience by directing visitors and search engines to the corresponding page at the new address.

Redirects not only avoid dead ends but also maintain SEO value (PageRank, Google Juice, or whatever name you prefer).

When Should You Use Redirects?

The redirects should be used by following these when

  • moving pages,
  • adding content,
  • removal of pages,
  • temporary offers, landing pages, or sales,
  • redirecting HTTP queries that aren’t secure to HTTPS,
  • transferring a website,
  • merging a website.

Types of Redirects:

You may have observed that while some websites utilize HTTP, some use HTTPS. The rules are the same for both www and non-www URLs in addresses.

The most typical kind of redirect is an HTTP redirect. The primary website version is displayed, duplicate content is avoided, link equity is preserved, and sites are moved to new domains using this technique.

Redirects other than HTTP include HTML and JavaScript. These two kinds of redirection should be used with considerable caution, as search engines only sometimes like them.

HTTP Redirects:

A user requests a URL through an HTTP redirect, which sends the status code 3xx to the server. When this code is entered into the browser, the user is taken to another URL address.

There are many types of 3xx status codes that determine the types of redirects, like

  • 301: Moved permanently 
  • 302: Found/Moved temporarily 
  • 303: See other
  • 304: Not modified
  • 307: Temporary Redirect
  • 308: Permanent Redirect

Many types of redirects bring all the HTTP code to know what is happening when this kind of redirect occurs. 

Here the webmaster usually used 301 redirects for SEO purposes because it allows for strengthening the backlink profile of a new page.

HTML Redirects

The special <Meta>tag can be used to redirect from one page to another.

In this, the redirects start downloading the page when the user starts searching for the page they want.

Here are some key points that include the tag,

Refresh- Instructs a web browser to refresh a web page automatically.

Content- Determines how long a browser waits before changing to a new URL.

URL- Decides which document has to be uploaded.

It is important to remember that a browser will automatically change a URL within a specified time period when it detects a refresh meta tag within the code.

Reloading a page is always possible without user intervention. But there is a risk that a user won’t notice if a redirect is performed quickly enough.

Java Scripts Redirects:

Redirects can be used, as the name implies, while processing JavaScript files at the end of the page load. Unlike server redirects, which do return the status code 301 (move permanently), JS redirection does not return.

JavaScript may redirect a page by using a window.location object = «https://site.com/». The same uses for JS redirects as for HTML redirects are possible.

Therefore, it is preferable to use server redirection if you establish a new URL for an existing page and want the redirected page to be indexed and retain the link juice.

At last, JavaScript redirection can be used, but it will only function if the client has enabled JavaScript.

Best Practices For Redirects

Redirecting a URL or an entire domain is one of the most frequent updates to a website.

Every website will experience it at some time throughout its lifespan, and there are a few technical considerations to make while getting things set up. 

  • Check your 301 redirects
  • Set 301 redirects before deleting pages
  • Link similar versions of your domains
  • Use a canonical URL if it is needed
  • Set 301 redirects before moving to a new domain
  • Maintain 301 redirects

If you are not actively doing things correctly, adding a redirect can negatively influence your SEO and search rankings. Although changing a URL or domain may solve clearly if any problem occurs.

  • Keep permanent redirects for 3 years 
  • Redirects are only sometimes necessary
  • Please do not overdo it
  • Always redirect to relevant pages
  • Review redirects over time
  • Avoid redirects chain
  • Avoid using redirect loops

SEO Redirects:

Now that you know the basics of redirects 301, 302, and 307, we hope you can use them effectively.

In this part, e`veryone will come to understand how important for the site managers and owners to use redirects 301, 302, and 307.

In this way, you will be able to utilize them effectively on your website.

  • Prevent content duplication of website
  • Helps in the transfer of websites
  • Forward traffic link juice from old URLs
  • Automatically redirect the site visitor
  • Helps to manage affiliate marketing
  • Simple redirection to the selected vendor

Redirect 301

301 is the name of the HTTP status code, which is transmitted by a web server to a browser. When a URL is marked with a 301, any users requesting the old URL will be instantly redirected to the new URL. 

A 301 redirect is most frequently used when a page has been relocated or moved permanently from a website thus the previous URL’s ranking power is transferred to the new URL.

Redirect 302

HTTP status code 302 refers to an HTTP redirect. By using this code, the browser is directed to a different URL.

In contrast to a 301 redirect, based on another HTTP status code and indicated as a permanent redirect, a 302 redirect is a temporary redirect.

Redirect 307

A resource has relocated, and the method and body of the first request will be reused, according to the 307 Temporary Redirect HTTP response status code.

If a page needs to be redirected to another URL, but its content and method remain the same, a 307 Temporary Redirect should be used.

It is liable that the page uses the HSTS standard if you receive a 307 HTTP response when verifying a URL in Google Chrome or another browser but not when testing with another tool.

Common SEO Redirect Mistakes:

Redirects are one of those factors that most people recognize their importance for SEO.

In this, you will know businesses’ greatest mistakes when using SEO redirects.

  • Not using redirects
  • Working with the wrong redirects
  • Using redirects instead of rewriting URLs
  • Practicing redirects in internal links
  • Chain redirects

Redirect Mistakes that Impact SEO:

A redirect allows webmasters to forward an old URL to a new one while maintaining most of the original URL’s value. If you want to make your website’s URL structure more user-friendly or if you want to delete specific pages, redirects can be useful.

SEO can be adversely affected by many unnecessary implementations, so some businesses should avoid the most common redirection errors to grow their business which is listed below.

1. Only redirecting to the homepage

Redirecting everything to the homepage is a terrible decision since all the signals associated with the previous content are gone. This may badly impact your content strategy.

2. Using the wrong type of redirect

A redirect is a great approach to move visitors from an outdated URL to a functioning one. Additionally, there are several reroute options available.

When using the wrong type, the traffic may affect when using the wrong kind of redirection.

3. Not redirecting broken links:

Failure to redirect at all is another common redirect error. Sometimes there are better courses of action than a redirect.

Instead, it’s advisable to remove the page and let the URL 404 alone. The objective is to enhance the lead-generating process for your company constantly.

4. Redirect chains or redirect loops:

Redirect chains and redirect loops are two frequent redirect errors that can make it difficult for users to navigate your website.

This hurts your SEO efforts and lowers the lifetime value of your users.

5. Forgetting about case sensitivity

It’s important to use proper case sensitivity when constructing redirect rules. Pick whichever case you like, but choose one because URLs are case-sensitive. Mostly everyone uses lowercase for URLs.

6. Not keeping track of your redirects

It’s important to keep track of redirection because you’ll need standards to compare changes in order to analyze your analytics and determine whether corrections caused a rise or decrease in traffic.

The fact that redirection can occur at both the page and server levels makes it crucial to track it.

Conclusion:

There are a number of reasons why SEO specialists perform URL redirects.

Whatever the issue, your main goal should be to move as many SEO factors as you can from the old URL to the new one.

Remember that 301 redirects are the majority of your redirects and pass on most of the link juice.

If you decide to use 302, or in some cases 307 redirect, you should do so carefully, as they are intended for temporary purposes only.

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Ashkar Gomez

Ashkar Gomez is the Founder of 7 Eagles (a Growth Marketing & SEO Company). Ashkar started his career as a Sales Rep in 2013 and later shifted his career to SEO in 2014. He is one of the leading SEO experts in the industry with 8+ years of experience. He has worked on 200+ projects across 20+ industries in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, UAE, Australia, South Africa, and India. Besides SEO and Digital Marketing, he is passionate about Data Analytics, Personal Financial Planning, and Content Writing.

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