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I have a 10 year old domain that ranks very high for some very common keywords. The domain name itself is not all that good, let's say it's ABDCE.com. But there are a lot of links and a lot of original content and it has done very well over the years.
In 2001 I found a much better domain. I registered it but it wasn't until I changed servers that I set the site up on the new domain name (maybe two years ago). I also had the old domain pointing to the same site, but not in the way I should have. I renamed the site to match the new domain name but all content is still the same.
Earlier this year I noticed about a 30% drop in traffic. I had no idea why until last week. I'm sure most of you know what happened. Google has about 130,000 pages indexed for my site. All but about 300 are considered supplemental.
I setup a permanent redirect in my httpd.conf last but I pointed my old domain name to the newer domain name.
The question I have is was this the correct way to handle it. When you do a search for the common keywords my site lists in the top 5 but it is listed under the old domain name. With the redirect pointing to the new domain name will I lose those high rankings for those keywords or will Google just change the domain name listed in the search results.
Thanks in advance for your help.
renamed the site to match the new domain name but all content is still the same
Sounds like a duplicate content issues. Here's some options.
Re-write the content on the old domain so that it is all original and not a duplication of the new site.
(both sites) Do the non-www to www pointing trick in .htaccess or httpd.conf your choice. Point their index.html to ./
Doing the above should remove any duplicate content issues.
Since, in your quote above, the renamed newer site is better for your visitors since the name better matches, think of your visitors first. If you must only have one site, and you don't want to re-write the old one, 301 all of it to the new one. First though, make sure all your links you control no longer point to the old one. You want to avoid internal links that constantly give 301 when you can.
I guess my biggest question is by using the 301 redirect from the old domain to the new one will I lose the high search rankings I have on the old domain name or will they carry over. I rank #1 for several very good two word searches and #3 for one word that Google has indexed over 339,000,000 times.
Just my 2 cents, others chime in if I'm wrong, and/or you have a better solution for him.
EDIT one more thing:
I guess my biggest question is by using the 301 redirect from the old domain to the new one will I lose the high search rankings I have on the old domain name
I don't know if you will or not. Different keywords, themes, genres, etc. might have different effects. Call this a "disclaimer", I suggest you do what you feel your research tells you, I comment on this thread because I have done similar, though initial results were not good, it paid WELL in the long haul.
[edited by: MThiessen at 8:50 pm (utc) on Dec. 13, 2006]