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301 Redirects - Can You Get Hit With A Google Penalty?

3:43 pm on Aug 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I always thought Google said setting redirects was the safe way to have pages that moved redirected to where it is now.

I am now hearing setting them up for too long it may be looked at as deceptive or an SEO tactic for using doorwaypages or cloaking techniques etc...and now Google Penalizes often for this.

I found this:

The use of automated browser redirects in any of your pages. Meta Refresh and JavaScript automated re-directs often result in Google penalties as the pages using them are perceived to be doorway pages. This technique is especially dangerous if the refresh time is less than 5 seconds. To avoid Google penalties, use a 301 re-direct or Mod Rewrite technique instead of these methods. This involves setting up a .htaccess file on your web server.

What do they mean by automated browser redirects? When I check my stats I find many messages from Google telling our visitors that "This page is redirecting you to url address example.com/abc-abc-abc page, click url to continue or click here to return to previous page." Is this the automated browser redirect message?

Have you seen these redirect messages by Google? Can they get my site penalized for having them too long?

About 5 months back we changed our website from a traditional site to a wordpress blog. Because all the URL's were new our webmaster setup redirects from the old URL to the new to prevent broken links and 404 errors.

Is it possible because these redirects are still in use for nearly 5 months is now looked at as deceptive and subject to a Google Penalty?

I questioned our webmaster and he said that the redirects are not java but setup on the server side.

I am not sure what he means by this but is it possible this cause our penalty?

Should we remove these redirects because 5 months is too long?

Anybody have an experience with this? Beeen Penalized?

Please send me your thoughts. Thanks!
5:05 pm on Aug 11, 2010 (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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They mean meta-refresh and javascript redirects - which are often not trusted or trustable, either.

These two forms of redirection are executed on the client side by the browser itself, rather on than the server side, which is recommended. There are two common kinds of server side redirects: 301 Permanent status and 302 Temporary.

No, the simple fact of using a 301 redirect in itself would not cause a penalty.
7:47 pm on Aug 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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

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As long as you do not link from within your own site to a URL that will be redirected on your own site, there should be no problem. Your links should go directly to the correct URL, and the redirect should be used to take care of previously-corrected-or-updates links on your own site or incorrect incoming links from sites that you do not control.