301 Redirect penalties

Google Algorithm Ranking Factors

(Number 195 of the 200)


Author: Dr. Manus Ward │Head of Digital Strategy and Data Protection │Hotelconsultant.com is a qualified and experienced former hotel manager, culinary Olympic team manager and hospitality Head of School who is passionate about passing on the knowledge he gained from one of the few hotel digital strategy doctorates in the world to you the hotelier. Bonus: If you have any problems with this contact me (100% free) at manus@hotelconsultant.com or 086 8185829 on this or any aspect of your hotel’s digital strategy.

Why do we need to do this

Google dilutes the PageRank of excessive 301 redirects and penalises the practice of purchasing an excessively large amount of domains for the exclusive aim of generating traffic through 301 redirects.

What does this mean

Websites from time to time change their domain name but want to keep the old name. An example could be from park-hotel-tralee.com to parkhotel.ie. The hotel wants to keep the traffic from the old site but still wants searchers using the old domain to arrive at the new site. In this case a 301 or permanent redirect is put in place. This is perfectly fine even if you have 1000 redirects on the old site redirected to 1000 pages in the new site. The problem is when redirected pages are redirected to pages that are redirected to pages etc. The Google bot will only travel about four jumps before disengaging. The searcher may arrive at new site but Google may give it no rankings in the search engine. In this cast excessive redirects may dilute the page’s PageRank.

Some sites have also gone to the extreme of purchasing sites with high PageRank and then a 301 redirects their traffic to spam sites or pages that are undeserving of the original high PageRank. Google will in this case penalise these sites by significantly lowering them in the search results. Do not do this.

What do I do: Unless you have moved site this will not affect you. But if you want to check click on http://www.redirect-checker.org/index.php and do the following:

You will then get this page.

This is an example with a 301 redirect.

The old domain name is redirected to the new one. As there is only one 301 redirect this is absolutely fine and will not affect them in any way in Google’s search results. If this page says anything that worries you email me at manus@hotelconsultant.com with the details.

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