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My site is www.cc.com and the affiliates are abc.cc.com, xyz.cc.com, etc. The content on all the affiliate sites are almost exactly the same as the main site, so I know I am running into duplicate content problems as well. I was told by one person to use robots metatags to keep the affiliate pages from being indexed. Someone else suggested that I use 301 redirects to the spiders so that the spiders always go to www.cc.com instead of the affiliate domains...and I would keep the link relevance from the affiliates that way. However, I don't want to do anything that might get me banned from the search engines.
Any suggestions on a safe way to get the dup content and affiliates out of the engines while keeping their links?
Affiliate = expense
Free search results listings = reduced expense
Just my thought...in my more evil cutthroat business way of thinking I'd SEO my site and then SEOeach of my affiliates site..it would be nice if the affiliates all owned different URLS and on different servers...
then it could be possible to own most of the front page listings for a category.. hehehe
Note: As with all of my posts "mileage may vary" and sanity is never more than a step away from the edge
volatilegx, why a 302 and not a 301?
Why a 302 indeed when hated by both search engines for the hijacking issues the 302 was aligned with?
10.3.3 302 Found
The requested resource resides temporarily under a different URI. Since the redirection might be altered on occasion, the client SHOULD continue to use the Request-URI for future requests. This response is only cacheable if indicated by a Cache-Control or Expires header field.
The temporary URI SHOULD be given by the Location field in the response. Unless the request method was HEAD, the entity of the response SHOULD contain a short hypertext note with a hyperlink to the new URI(s).
If the 302 status code is received in response to a request other than GET or HEAD, the user agent MUST NOT automatically redirect the request unless it can be confirmed by the user, since this might change the conditions under which the request was issued.
What I'm suggesting is a little mod_rewrite voodoo to extract the affiliate code/ID from the subdomain and rewrite the URL to make it a parameter in a "normal" affiliate-type URL. Then, the client/browser is redirected to the new URL. The affiliate still gets credit for any sales. the original URL is still indexed. What's the problem?
Sure, you can use a 301 redirect, or even a 303, but the URL won't appear how you want it in the SERPs. Of course, the search engines aren't doing that properly for a 302 most of the time either.
Hell, instead of redirecting, let's just serve the affiliate page via a LWP/curl request and use more server resources than necessary. At least the response will be perfect and you'll have full control. Then again, that's what the original post was about :)