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301 for whole site. How long for old links to drop off Google?

5:52 pm on Nov 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I have a website. They changed their domain name. All of the pages are indexed in G.

I created an exact replica of the site with the new domain name.

in the old domain, I created an .htaccess file directing all traffic for the entire domain to the new domain. Basically using this:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /

Rewriterule ^(.*)$ http://www.newsite.com/$1 [R=301,L]

All of the links are redirecting properly. But how long will it take for G to drop the old links in favor of the new?

I assume the next time they crawl the site, correct?

[edited by: tedster at 6:14 pm (utc) on Nov. 3, 2009]

6:43 pm on Nov 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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It depends on Google's current computational load, but it can happen within a week or two - or up to several months in the rarest cases. You can speed this process a bit by using the "change of address" in Webmaster Tools, and being sure to verify the new domain in WMT as well.

A second help is getting some of the old backlinks switched over, and also acquiring new backlinks directly to the new domain.

As long as the 301 redirect is technically accurate, it won't truly matter since the visitor finds the correct URL no matter what.

12:02 am on Nov 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

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In addition to what Ted said, i would like to think, you should keep the 301 intact for as long as you can. The reason is, you might have a lot of links pointing to your old domain, a lot of bookmarks as well and once when you think google has indexed all your urls and then when you remove 301 from your old domain, you will end up loosing on all the link juice which is redirecting to you through old domain.