How and When to Apply 301 WP Redirects?

When you start a new blog or a website, everything will seem to run smoothly. There will be only a few webpages, the URL structure will be simple, which is why your website will get the initial momentum. Over a period of time, your website starts growing complex with the addition of posts, pages, and URLs. 

The technical definition of ‘Redirects’

A redirect is a process, which automatically forwards a requested URL to a new or destination URL. A redirect is applied normally because a page or post or URL has been moved temporarily or permanently, somewhere else. Redirects can be caused on the server-side and even on the browser side.

Server-side redirects occur when the HTTP request is responded with server status code indicating the transfer to a new URL, where the user gets forwarded to. Each redirect has a purpose, so understand the HTTP status code. The most common ones SEO experts apply for WordPress redirect are the 301 for permanent changes and 302 as temporary status. 

301 redirects 

When to use…..

  • Move domain or post permanently
  • Change site structure or protocol permanently

When not to employ…..

  • Geo-targeting
  • A/B testing
  • Device targeting
  • Tracking 

In terms of SEO, WP 301 redirects are powerful because nearly all link equity of the existing URL gets inherited by the destination page. This kind occurs on both the server and browser side. The search engines get an indication to index the new page and eliminate the old one. 

302 redirects

302 do not impact website presence on search results as they are temporary redirects. It is for a limited period. Use 302, when you wish to apply non-cacheable redirects. Avoid 302, if you desire to transfer the URL’s SEO value to the destination page. 

Common scenarios to apply redirects

Redirect duplicate content

Duplicate content can actually mess with your ranking. This can be a bad scenario for large websites, where the likelihood of duplicate content is high. When there are multiple versions of the same page Google finds it hard to determine, which URL to rank. Duplicate content redirection to the original page is the best solution to avoid confusion and even visitors. If things are totally messed up, you might even have to go for WP Reset and start from the scratch.

Redirect multiple domains

Multiple domains related to the main URL are bought for online brand protection. They can be common misspellings or name extensions, which can be valuable if redirected to your main URL instead of allowing them to sit there. You invested in multiple domains, so make good use of them with redirects.

Redirect old domain

Your old domain name is not applicable as your business went through an immense rebrand, so now you plan to change the domain name. The migration of the whole website is labor-intensive than simple redirect but is possible with the help of reliable SEO experts. They ensure your websites link equity and ranking does not get damaged. 

Now, you understood how valuable redirects are for your website. Try the 301 WP redirect tool!