How Redirects Affect Your Search Engine Ranking
SEO or search engine optimization is a crucial factor when it comes to generating traffic. If you have a website, you can significantly improve its ranking on the search engines by making use of the right keywords and key phrases. See to it that you do your research about the latest and most frequently used keywords and key phrases.
Nonetheless, you should also make sure that you become familiar with the various variables that affect how search engines and online users find websites. You should also be aware of the factors that can have a negative effect on your ranking. Redirects, for instance, should be considered as they can have a negative effect on your SEO rankings.
What are redirects exactly?
Well, a 301 redirect is basically a permanent redirect from a certain URL to another. For instance, if your website has a previous URL of www.websitesample.com and you want to change it to www.websiteexample.com, you need to implement a 301 redirect from your old URL to your new one.
Each time an online user types in your old URL, he will automatically be redirected to your new URL. This also applies to links that contain your old URL. So even if such links are not updated, the online users will not get lost. They will still be able to find your website and access your content.
Likewise, a 301 redirect can be compared to the change of address form you get at the post office. Change of address forms can be used to ensure that you still receive mail from people who might not know that you have already moved to a new place. So, using a 301 redirect will ensure that your target audience gets to your website even if they do not yet know of your new URL. They will eventually find out about it, anyway, once they get redirected.
There are two types of redirects that you should know about.
These are the code 301 redirect and the code 302 redirect. Code 301 has already been introduced above. Code 302, on the other hand, refers to a temporary redirect. This means that it is not meant for long-term. You can use a 302 redirect to redirect traffic to the home page of another website to promote a particular event or product for a limited period of time.
What do redirects have to do with SEO then? Well, you should be aware that 301 redirects could lower the ranking of your Web page. Page rank, as you know, refers to the search engines’ method of determining the position of websites and Web pages. However, 301 redirects do not always transfer ranking data. This makes old Web pages unable to get a higher ranking after they have been revised.
You can use a 301 redirect if your Web pages are revised or if your website has changed its address or domain name. You can also use it if only a part of your URL has changed. It is, however, recommended that you redirect old pages to new pages via a 301 permanent redirect.
Keep in mind that a redirect may or may not make a huge difference when it comes to generating traffic. Then again, you should also remember that search engines can determine redirects and that having two of them can hurt your ranking.