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How to redirect old SERP pages that return 404 errors to new site



8:41 pm on Jun 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

One of our customers had an established site with a .org TLD. They wanted a complete site redesign but also wanted to publish the new site under a new .com TLD. That's been all been done.

We pointed the .org domain to the new .com site.

But now, while we're waiting for the engines to spider the new site the client has pointed out that there are existing Google search results that link to the old site's pages-- which are now nonexistent. So you get a 404 error.

The redesigned pages are all new with new filenames but there may be some duplicate content here and there on the old pages.

The client doesn't want the viewers to see those old pages. They want them to see the new site. But they don't want the viewers to see the 404 errors either.

What's the best way to handle this without getting into trouble with Google, Yahoo and MSN?

Will this new .com site get sandboxed or will it show because it's being redirected from the .org domain?

Thanks for you help.


9:41 pm on Jun 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

New .TLD, new filenames.

I did the same thing a few months ago. You have to 301 redirect every old filename at the .org to the new filename at the .com.
Contact as much as possible other sites that are linking to the .org to change the TLD in their link and try getting new inbound links to the .com.

In my case, but maybe I was lucky, there was no problem at all with any SE. But there are lots of horror stories in these forums..


12:58 pm on Jun 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Doing 301s is the way we're leaning here. But I read somewhere in another post about 301s that using too many of them can trigger spam filters with Google and other engines.

Any experience or knowledge on that?

And to make matters even worse here, I just found out through the waybackmachine that the client had, unknown to us, had a web site up and running under the .com TLD from 2001 to late 2004. There are still Google SERPs for those .com pages.

We're flirting with duplicate content issues here.

If I get out of this without the .com site getting banned I'll be surprised.


12:18 am on Jun 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I hope to not hijack this thread, but there's a lot of overlap between DeValle's issue and ours.

We're moving our Web store from a structure like this:


to this:


We are very well indexed (we rank #1 for some great terms) and don't want to lose that.

I know we'll probably need something like the ISAPI Rewrite product, but even with that, how practical is it to generate 301 redirects for 130 categories and, ideally, 11,000 products? To make things more fun, we're moving from a Linux environment to Windows.


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