I have a form people fill out on my website, and on submit they are then sent to an appropriate document depending on their input.
Some people link directly to those documents instead of to my form page which the preferred method. Therefore I added to my .htacess a 301 redirect to the form page for visitors requesting documents with a referer other than blank or from my domain.
The 301 redirect is important to me so people's address bars change to the matching page, and for search engines to accredit the form page for the incoming links.
My only concern is, once there, the visitor will see an empty form. For usability, I would strongly like to send which document the user requested to the form page, so once loaded, the form will be pre filled out for their appropriate document.
I would know how to do this using my .htaccess page if I wanted to have that document name in the address bar, but I would strongly like to have the address bar be the normal form page address.
Is it possible that in the redirect I can send that variable in a POST type method, where the information is not visible in the address bar?
I guess if I can't do the first I could redirect the visitor to an intermediary page that just reads the variable in the link and stores that value in a cookie before sending the visitor off the the form page.
Is there a perfered and elegant method? Do I have other options?
I would greatly appreciate your feedback.