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    The correct way of changing domain name ?


    There is an existing site AAA.com and it needs to be renamed to BBB.com

    Uptil now, I believed that all you have to do is a 301 redirect from AAA.com -> BBB.com
    at the domain level. But many users on different forums have reported loss of rankings
    taking that approach. And they all claim it to be the sandbox effect on the new domain.

    Today I watched an old matt cutts video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wATxftE8ooE
    He says to copy part of the website and do a 301 redirect and then slowly move the rest site.

    It seems that matt cutts is trying to give a hint that the page level redirects will preserve rankings
    better than a direct domain 301 redirect.

    So which of the 2 approaches is correct -

    1. Direct 301 redirect at the domain level.
    2. 301 redirects at individual page levels.
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    A page level redirect is always better as it redirects users as well as link equity from the old page to the new page.

    What that means is aaa.com/blue-widgets.html gets redirected to bbb.com/blue-widgets.html (or any other file name that you have on the new site for the same page)

    If you have maintained the same file/folder structure and names in the new site, then the redirects can be set using one block on code in the .htaccess of aaa.com

    RewriteBase /
    RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^.*$
    RewriteRule ^/?(.*)$ http://www.bbb.com/$1 [R=301,L]
    However, if the new page names are different, then you have to place the redirects one by one

    Redirect 301 /blue-widgets.html bbb.com/blue-widgets.html

    Comments on this post

    • HappyJackJunior agrees
    • Prof.stan agrees : to the points

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