Web pages get removed or shifted to other locations due to many reasons. This is a widespread practice in SEO. But one needs to follow proper protocol before taking down or moving a page. If you fail to do so, then your SEO services will certainly take a hit. Therefore, it is vital to implement a redirect to stop further visits to the page.
What is a 301 redirect?
A 301 redirect is a redirect that implies the permanent shifting of a page to a new location and that the original page no longer exists. The 301 code is the HTTPS status code of the redirect page. Google will see a 301 redirect and remove old URLs from its index. In addition, it will recognize the new URL or domain as the page’s new location.
When should you use a 301 redirect?
The use cases of 301 redirects vary according to the needs of the web page owners. One can use a 301 redirect in the following circumstances:
Permanently shifting to a new URL
You will have to change the URL of a page on your site in cases where your product name needs to be updated or when categorizing the pages on your website. A 301 redirect, when used here, will get more traffic to the new URL and will let search engines know which page to crawl and index to for better rankings.
Migrating your site to a new domain
It is a common practice within companies to rebrand themselves or shift to a new domain name that adds value to their business. Sometimes, they will have to change from a .in to a .com website to give a new name to their business. A 301 redirect is a must when domain names are changed and should be accompanied by Google Search Console’s “change of address” tool.
Revamping site structure
You may need to upgrade your site’s structure to categorize content and improve SEO on your page. Doing this will make it easier for search engines to understand how the pages on your website are interconnected. Thus, use a 301 redirect to make webpages easily identifiable for searchers.
Merging two or more domains
As part of your internal SEO strategy, you may combine all your domains into one .com structure. The redirecting process is similar to the one you follow while changing the domain name. However, you must redirect the link to the country-specific subfolder instead of the root domain using Google Search Console’s ‘change of address’ tool.
Fixing uppercase and lowercase errors
Using uppercase or lowercase letters directly impacts and creates different web page versions. A single uppercase letter in the URL will be perceived as a separate or duplicate page. A 301 redirect can resolve uppercase and lowercase mixups in the URL. Therefore, it is recommended to use lowercase for all URLs.
How to use 301 redirects to improve SEO performance?
301 redirects can be helpful to your SEO services, like building visibility organically and improving rankings. Some of the common ways in which 301 redirects can boost your SEO performance are:
Merging thin content pages
An impactful method of using a 301 redirect is merging thin content pages to build a content piece that discusses a topic in detail. Then, identify those pages that underperform on SERPs, redirect them to similar pages, and create something that can be ranked on search engines.
Fix keyword cannibalization issues
Keyword cannibalization occurs when two or more pages target the exact keywords or serve the same intent. A 301 redirect can fix pages that compete with each other by removing them permanently.
Merging multiple websites
If you are running multiple websites, say a chain of hotels where each location has a separate domain. You can merge all websites into one central website. You are combining the authority and ranking of multiple websites into one with a more significant structure and a robust website on SERPs.
301 redirects bring benefits to Professional SEO services if used strategically. However, it is essential to check that there are no pending issues with the current 301 redirects on your web page, as they could hinder SEO efforts. The most significant advantage of using a 301 redirect is that you will see considerable gains in organic traffic.