A redirect is when someone requests to visit a page, and gets taken to (redirected to) a different page. Redirects can be for both visitors and search engine crawlers. It’s a key factor for effective search engine optimization, and is mostly done when the website owner doesn’t want crawlers or visitors to view a particular page or simply if that page has been deleted. It’s better than visitors seeing a 404 message when they try to view a webpage.
Though the concept is simple, many website owners still have no idea behind the concepts of redirects and their role in SEO. As a matter of fact, many companies providing SEO services in Dubai are often questioned when they include redirects in their SEO strategy for clients.
This article is meant to serve as a guide for those people who doesn’t know the importance of redirects in SEO. To make it easier, this article would be answering questions that are commonly raised by SEO beginners and website owners who aren’t SEO-savvy.
Do redirects negatively impact SEO?
Redirects, if done right, are actually good for SEO. But bad implementations may result in traffic loss or, worst case scenario, PageRank loss.
Why should you redirect?
Basically, to reduce annoyances. You wouldn’t want a new visitor to your site try to view one of your webpages and end up annoyed seeing a 404 instead. You can redirect them to a different page that you own, with information they would find relevant.
Redirects are particularly necessary when the website is under maintenance which can include minor changes to changes in URL structure, migrating to a new domain etc. This is why visitors and crawlers should be redirected from those pages that have been changed in some way during maintenance or deleted. You can certainly go for a 410 if you want visitors to know that you have deleted a post they are looking for, or you can use a 301 redirect to take them to a post that’s similar to the one they originally searched for.
What are 301 and 302 redirects?
301 redirects are permanent redirects, meaning the old URL is replaced by a new destination permanently. Though this is quite common, it’s recommended to not use 301 redirect if there is any chance the old URL would be used again someday.
A 302 redirect is essentially a temporary redirect that can be used to convey a message that the page or the post that the visitor is trying to view is temporarily unavailable.
Many experts in the online marketing Dubai industry can offer guidelines and best practices when it comes to using redirects on websites, especially during the migration from HTTP to HTTPS. Redirects can make or break a website’s rank among search engines, and should be done carefully after learning where they should be implemented and where they shouldn’t.