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Redirect, Cookies, and Google index

 2:27 pm on Nov 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

Dear all,

Let me explain my problem:

I have a bilingual website:

http://www.example.com - the default and local language
[english.example.com...] - English.

Now I intend to:

Redirect the www. to the English.example.com for the visitors' convenience because now MOST of our visitors are English speaking, however, our target customers are Locals who use local language.

This will be a temporary redirect, and will last for six months.

How the redirect and cookies work?

If they are first-time visitors : www. will be redirected to English.example.com, and if they do not change language, their next time visit, the default language will be English or english.example.com. IF they switch the language, their next time visit will be in Local language or www.example.com. (the cookies work here.)

I do hope that you understand my poor explanation.

So, my questions are:

- What happens with my site? Google will index the English.example.com page instead of www.example.com?

- Ranking will be affected?

- Google use Browsers' cookies or not?

Any reply would be much appreciated at that time.

Thank you all.




 8:47 pm on Nov 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

1. googlebot does not accept cookies.

2. If you use a 302 temporary redirect, Google normally indexes the content of the target page but under the url of the redirecting address.

IF they switch the language, their next time visit will be in Local language or www.example.com.

3. Whatever you need to do during this transition phase, make sure that googlebot has a consistent experience with your domain root. The plans "sounds" OK if executed in a technically precise manner, but it also sounds complex, and being complex opens the door to more error potential.

Simpler altogether would be having the www.example.com root always serve English, then have other versions served on dedicated urls such as example.com/language or language.example.com. This avoids any potential tangles with redirects, temporary, permanent, coookied or whatever.


 4:44 am on Nov 22, 2007 (gmt 0)

Thank you very much Tedster, I will apply your suggestions.


P.S. thank you for all of your help so far. I treasure it.

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