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Do 301 Redirects Cause Any Problems in Google?

     
6:37 am on Mar 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

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In the past I have used forward links that implicitly cast a 302 header as a way of reducing page size, easing logging, etc etc... I have since stopped - (I noticed before Xmas that for a short time a "page" on my site - in reality an Amazon page I had forwarded to - actually ranked above the real Amazon page but did not replace it in the search listings. It took Google about 2 days to sort itself out and drop my link. I decided this was unethical - so after working out what the problem was, I stopped.)

Forwarding in this way is useful though. Am I right in thinking that if I throw a 301 header (site moved permanently), then forward to the target URL, google will not take this amiss... Will it have a detrimental effect on my honestly gained pagerank? Are there any "ethical objections" to 301s? Does google understand them properly?

Thanks in advance.