Keeping Up-To-Date With URL Redirects
URL redirection, also known as URL forwarding, is a technique that makes a web page available under more than one URL address. When a web browser attempts to open a URL that has been redirected, a page with a different URL will be opened instead. Similarly, domain redirection or domain forwarding is when all pages in a URL domain are redirected to a different domain. For example, mydomain.com could be redirected to mydomain.org.
Do I Need to URL Redirect?Back to top
There are various reasons for redirecting a URL, but in most cases, you will do it to prevent broken links when a web page is moved to a different URL. If you are moving your original company website over to Site Builder, you may have noticed that the URL structure is slightly different than what you might have been using before. If this is the case, several URL redirects may be required to keep your customer access up-to-date.
Using Your Domain with Site Builder
In order to use the URL redirects feature, you will need to configure your custom domain in Site Builder. If you need assistance to set that up, please review our knowledge base article on Custom Domains. Once that has been configured you will be able to redirect your old page URLs to the new ones you create in Site Builder.
Adding a URL RedirectBack to top
To add a new URL redirect to your Site Builder account visit Settings > Advanced > URL Redirects
In the URL Redirects pane, click on the + ADD A REDIRECT field to get started.
In the example below, we have two web browsers containing two different websites. Underneath is our original company website. On top is our Site Builder website. Looking at the URLs (web addresses) in each browser you can see that both websites are open on the accommodation page. The URLs, however, are slightly different. Due to the URL structure in Site Builder, there is an extra element in the URL (categories) that our original website URL did not contain.
Since we no longer wish to use the old company website, we need to redirect that old accommodations page to the new one in Site Builder. We want to do this because other websites and customers might have links pointing directly to the old accommodation page. Also, the page is probably already listed in popular search engines and we don't want to lose any Pagerank we might have accumulated there. So, all we have to do is add the two URLs to our URL Redirects pane, choose a redirect type and click the Update button.
You must enter a relative URL when adding it to the field in the redirects pane. This means you need to drop the domain from the URL, keeping the forward slash that comes after it. For example:
Redirect TypeBack to top
Site Builder offers two types of URL redirect: 301 & 302.
What is a 301 redirect?
301, or permanently moved, is a redirect that passes 90-99% of the original PageRank to the new page. You should use a 301 to signify to the web crawlers that your content has moved permanently.
When should I use a 301 redirect?
An example of when to use the 301 redirect would be if you have changed domains or if you launched your site in a new CMS (Site Builder) and your URL structure has changed. Creating 301 redirects for your old content to point to the new content will tell the search engines that you have moved from A to B for good. This will allow search engines to direct ranking and value signals to the new URL because they understand this location to be the new, permanent home for that content.
What is a 302 redirect?
A 302 status code means found, more commonly referred to as temporarily moved. This redirect doesn’t carry or pass the PageRank to the new location. What it does do is get the user to an appropriate location so that you aren’t showing them a broken link, a 404 page not found, or an error page.
When should I use a 302 redirect?
A good example of when to use a 302 redirect would be in an e-commerce setting. Let’s say you have a product that you no longer have for sale – maybe the product is seasonal, out of stock, or is something that you might sell again. In this case, you might want to use a 302 redirect to send the user to the category page. If the product outage is going to be for any real length of time it might not make sense to send the user to a page that they cannot order from, so you redirect them to the category page allowing them to look at similar items. With that 302 you are telling the search engine crawlers that your content is just offline temporarily and they should keep the value of that page intact and not pass it to another URL. In most cases, you will probably use a 301 redirect, but the option for a 302 redirect is there should you choose to use it. Now, using our example above, whenever somebody clicks on or types in the link
checkfrontlodge.com/accommodation, they will be automatically redirected to
checkfrontlodge.com/categories/accommodation. The user will not be notified about the redirect and is highly unlikely to notice the switch has even been made!
Site Builder does not currently support the use of wildcards for URL redirection. As a result, you will need to enter any URLs you wish to redirect individually.