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Homepage within directory - problem?

     
3:10 pm on Sep 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I'm currently working on a site whereby when I type in the url www.widget.com, it goes to the website, and the following url appears in the address bar: www.widget.com/home/index.php

I've always SEO'd sites whereby when I type in www.widget.com thats where it stays.

Are there any issues to consider with this? Would www.widget.com be stronger for SEO purposes?

5:06 pm on Sept 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Yes, it is a better practice to serve content directly from the domain root with a 200 OK status.

However, I have worked with sites who placed their home page in a directory - there were technical issues with their set-up that were challenging for them to work around. They used a 302 Temporary redirect for the domain root -- that means Google indexed the domain root as the url, but with the content of the redirected page. This worked for them, and they do fine on the SERPs, even for a search on example.com.

But I've seen a 301 redirect of the domain root wreak havoc on the domain name search, and other ways to redirect (such as javascript, meta refresh) can match a spammer site profile/footprint and cause big problems with Google. It can look like what they call a "sneaky redirect" in their guidelines.

So, if you can serve the content directly from the domain root, definitely do that - it's the best. If not, then a 302 is second best, IMO.