What are 301 & 302 Redirects?

When moving from an old website to a new, it's important to know and understand how to tell Google where your pages have gone.

Webmasters and SEO Specialists can assist you with your website changes and we highly recommend you ensure that changes to your website do not affect your online visibility.

So What Is A 301 Redirect?

MOZ: "A 301 redirect is a permanent redirect which passes between 90-99% of link equity (ranking power) to the redirected page. 301 refers to the HTTP status code for this type of redirect. In most instances, the 301 redirect is the best method for implementing redirects on a website."

A 301 redirect means that the page has permanently moved to a new location.

What is a 302 Redirect?

A 302 redirect means that the move of the page URL or domain is only temporary. There aren’t too many situations where a 302 is appropriate. How often have you temporarily moved a page? It’s much more common to move pages permanently using the correct 301 redirect.

Which one should I use?

To a user they seem to work the same way, but they aren’t the same as far as search engines are concerned.  Search engines sense the different types of redirects, and handle them differently. Search engines need to figure out whether to keep the old page, or replace it with the one found at the new location. If the wrong type of redirect has been set up, search engines may become confused, resulting in a loss of traffic.

Why does this matter?

If you are moving a web page or an entire web site to a new location, for instance if you change your domain name, you want visitors to be able to find your site. A redirect causes the user’s browser to automatically forward from the old location to the new one.

Most people think that Google and the other search engines will just follow the redirects, but that’s where things get complicated. When a site moves, it can trigger the Google ageing delay. This means that Google may prevent new pages from ranking for up to 8 to 9 months. This may cause the site to drop out of the search rankings.

For more help and advice on SEO, please contact our HubDo SEO Specialists at monitor@hubdo.com