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Does on-page 301 redirect code substitute for IIS version?

Has anybody had bad experiences using this method?

   
5:12 pm on Sep 16, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



In an emergency, when I couldn't get into IIS on a shared Windows server, I used on-page code for a 310 redirect instead of what I assume is the preferred way-- through IIS.


<%@ Language=VBScript %>
<%
Response.Status="301 Moved Permanently"
Response.AddHeader "Location", "http://www.new-location.com"
%>

I redirected hundreds of obsoleted but indexed pages using this ASP page:
http://example.com/directoryname/listings.asp

It works. All those pages that were indexed in Google are now redirecting to my new page.

And the check server header tool says
HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently

Is this all I need to do to keep from losing all that prior content, or should I find a Web host where I can get into IIS and do it the old fashioned way?
11:30 pm on Sep 16, 2010 (gmt 0)

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



although the VBScript appears to be within the "on page" code, the status code response is actually sent before, or rather in this case instead of, the document.
so it appears to be doing the correct thing which is good.

what would concern and is not clear to me is if you are redirecting several legacy pages to a single new location which is usually a bad thing to do.
3:02 pm on Sep 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



It's true that there are 100 legacy pages but they are all dynamic pages generated to /listings.asp.
/listings.asp?=red
/listings.asp?=blue
etc.
11:32 pm on Sep 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

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



do each of the unique legacy urls get redirected to a unique new location?
2:44 am on Sep 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



No, they don't.

All listings.asp pages that were indexed are now redirected to one current page.

Under the new site, the old functionality (all those categories) was given up. All those categories no longer exist, nor does anything on the new site approximate that old functionality.

So all the dynamic pages stemming from /listings.asp are redirected to one new page. It's also named listings.asp but it only links to a couple of new pages that are similar.

A couple of hundred dynamic pages went away.

I seem to remember Matt Cutts saying that when redirecting, one should redirect to the most similar page, or something to that effect.
10:35 am on Sep 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

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



redirecting a large number of pages to a single page can cause problems from both the SEO perspective and the user experience.
i would approach the problem from the user's perspective.
perhaps a few pages representing categories or information silos would work better than a single generic page.

i would also study the inbound links to these urls.
one or a few of these urls may actually be well worth the effort of recreating and redirecting or even better, keeping at the original url.
in this case it may actually be better to recreate/redirect only the valuable content and letting the rest go 404 or 410, using a custom 404/410 page with some relevant navigation and a search function.

other than the change of ownership issues, this thread has some advice that applies to your situation:

Bought a domain. How to redirect old pages?:
http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4097996.htm [webmasterworld.com]
12:22 pm on Sep 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



That page did have a good discussion. As Tedster suggested, I could create a separate new page for each of the categories delivered by listings.asp?=category (maybe 15 or so) and redirect the appropriate pages. Many of those old pages had PR2.

That begs one last question: what's the "shelf life" of those old pages in the index. Is two weeks with the new site live too late to try that scheme?