When it comes to having both your site visitors and crawling robots looking at the correct content on your website, nothing works better than implementing 301 redirects. By using a 301 redirect correctly, you ensure that the content pages that you want to be seen are the ones that users are sent to, giving you more control over the flow and function of your website. According to a post from Supple Solutions, 301 redirects communicate to search engines that a page has been moved permanently. So just when would you want to use this function? Here are three situations where it makes sense to use a 301 redirect on your website.
You’re Updating Content
If you have content that you’ve created in the past but that needs to be refreshed or updated in order to still be relevant, you should consider creating a 301 redirect from the old content to the new content. This allows you to retain the older content you’ve created while still maintaining importance and accuracy on your website. One of the benefits of updating content this way is that, according to Brad Miller at Search Engine Watch, all the authority and rank success you had with the older page will get passed on to the newer page as well. This way, you won’t lose any traction your older page got with either the search engines or with your website visitors.
You’re Using a New Site Domain
There may come a time, whether for the sake of rebranding or some other reason, that you may feel it necessary to get a new domain name for your website. However, this can present a lot of problems if you already have a relatively successful website that you don’t want to just abandon. If you find yourself in this situation, a 301 redirect can be a lifesaver. By implementing this change, people who are looking for you under your old domain name will still be able to find the information they are seeking. According to Moz, this 301 redirect will seamlessly send both users and search engines from the page they originally requested—your old domain—to the one you prefer them to see—your new domain.
You Have the Same Content on Multiple URLs
In some situations, people may be able to access essentially the same page on your website through a different way. When this happens, you can have multiple pages with identical content on them but with a different URL. This can create a problem for your website regarding duplicate content. If you find yourself in this circumstance, using a 301 redirect to bring all requests to view this information to the same page will help to both simplify your sitemap and your analytics. Google suggests either picking the URL that you prefer or the URL that has the highest rankings or traffic numbers and then having all the relevant pages redirect to that one page.
301 redirects can be a great way to make sure the content you want to be viewed is the content that your users find easily. If you find yourself in any of the above situations, implement 301 redirects into your site today