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301 Redirect Moved Permanently

Is it ok, to use 301 redirect for jump-type links?

9:21 pm on Mar 31, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Hello All,
We have a website that uses long, seo based URLs, here is an example: store.example.com/details/785395-a-really-long-string-of-keywords-goes-here.html

We also allow people to access the page using a shorter, easier URL, like:

The shorter URL simply redirects to the long-url page.

I'd like to use a 301 Moved Permanently redirect on teh shorter URL, and point it to the long one. We have implemented this by writing header info on the redirecting page.

On testing, it seems that the response is not coming as it should. I would think there should be two responses reported, one for the 301 response, and a second for 200OK on teh second page.

Can someone pelase confirm that this is indeed incorrect as it currently is running?

[edited by: jatar_k at 5:31 pm (utc) on Apr 1, 2010]
[edit reason] please use example.com [/edit]

9:27 pm on Mar 31, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I should have posted teh results of teh test as well:

Current Date and Time: 2010-03-31T14:26:49-0700

#1 Server Response: http://store.example.com/go?id=785395
HTTP Status Code: HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently
Content-Length: 162
Content-Type: text/html
Location: http://store.example.com/go/?id=785395
Server: Microsoft-IIS/6.0
X-Powered-By: ASP.NET
Date: Wed, 31 Mar 2010 21:26:20 GMT
Redirect Target: http://store.example.com/go/?id=785395

#2 Server Response: http://store.example.com/go/?id=785395
HTTP Status Code: HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently
Date: Wed, 31 Mar 2010 21:26:21 GMT
Server: Microsoft-IIS/6.0
X-Powered-By: ASP.NET
Location: /details/785395-a-really-long-string-of-keywords-goes-here.html
Content-Length: 115
Content-Type: text/html
Cache-control: private
Redirect Target: /details/785395-a-really-long-string-of-keywords-goes-here.html

#3 Server Response: /details/785395-a-really-long-string-of-keywords-goes-here.html
Wrong service type or malformed URL

[edited by: jatar_k at 5:30 pm (utc) on Apr 1, 2010]

[edited by: jdMorgan at 6:26 pm (utc) on Apr 1, 2010]
[edit reason] de-linked URLs [/edit]

5:52 pm on Apr 1, 2010 (gmt 0)


WebmasterWorld Administrator phranque is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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one of the things you should be careful of is the keyword wishlist urls that are actually non-canonical.
for example if you are also serving this content to store.example.com/details/785395.html then you may have a problem.
6:44 pm on Apr 1, 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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The first redirect is apparently just adding a missing trailing slash to the requested URL, because it is missing from the on-page link or was not typed-in. The on-page link must be corrected if the former case applies.

The second redirect specifies an invalid "Location" header (as well as "Redirect-Target" header, whatever that is). The protocol and domain name are missing.

The third response is not a redirect, but rather it appears to be a badly-formed server error response -- It is missing the usual server status code and standard HTTP error message, e.g. 500-Server Error.

You may be flirting with search-ranking disaster here... I hope that this is a test server and not a live site.

For any given "content" on your site, make sure that one and only one URL can be used to reach it. Any and all variations in protocol (HTTP vs. HTTPS), domain/subdomain, www- vs. non-www, FQDN-format hostnames, appended port numbers, URL casing, content, and 'embedded parameters' order, and query string content, casing, and parameter order should be redirected to the single correct and canonical URL.

Allowing more than one single URL to resolve to the same page creates duplicate content, and leaves your rankings at the mercy of back-end search engine processing to sort it out. Further, failure to validate the "really-long-string-of-keywords-goes-here.html" based on the "id" number may leave your site open to exploitation by malicious competitors, who may then use keyword-in-URL links to try to 'associate' your site site with any keywords they like...

Be aware that "really-long-string-of-keywords-goes-here.html" is a last-ditch technique, and pales in significance against good unique page titles and descriptions, and good relevant link link-text on inbound links from other good relevant sites. So, making the list of keywords in your URLs "really long" may have little effect except to make your URLs look spammy and to make it impossible for your visitors to remember or to pass your URLs on to their friends or associates. I don't know your site, so it's up to you to be sure that this approach is "worth all the trouble."

8:40 pm on Apr 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Thank you for the responses. I will work through them and try to makes sense of them. Jim, thank you for a very insightful response. I will look at all of your comments carefully as I move ahead being sure to address each issue. We will likely keep the URL structure in terms of the product type and category where they are and will try your suggestions to make the most of them. Any chance you do SEO?SEM consulting? PM if so, I can use some help…

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