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I'm having issues with users who think that Google Search is the address bar.

Some of the sites that link to my site use user friendly addresses with 301 redirects to pages that have less friendly URLs. So, for example if I enter www.foo.com/bar it goes to www.bar.com/page.php?some-parameters-and-utm-codes-etc usually this is done by a 301 redirect in order to keep the SEO from foo.com on bar.com and so on, which I believe is standard practice.

However, lately there have been more and more people searching www.foo.com/bar instead of going to www.foo.com/bar directly and because the page /bar is nothing more than a redirect it has no SEO that I know of.

Things I've thought of but haven't been able to test, because Google takes forever to update :) (and I'm lazy like that), include using Google sitemaps and having them enter their redirects as entries there. (I could see this working if they were the top search entry all the time, and it might appear as a sitelink, but I don't know if that'll make the URL itself show up in searches)

Using canonical tags on my pages to the redirects they set up. Which is a nightmare in itself because of the nature of my pages. One week the www.foo.com/bar might go to www.bar.com/pageA.php the next it might go to www.bar.com/pageB.php and having to remember to take the canonical tag off of pageA, so that it doesn't get confused with pageB would be a pain.

Using 302 redirects -.-

So I guess the question here is, does anyone have any experience or knowledge about this? What should I do to make www.foo.com/bar show up when someone 'searches' for this redirect URL?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Oct 5 '12 at 20:59

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2 Answers 2

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If you have a webpage (or website) that just redirects to another website Google will eventually not index it. When you use a redirect for an extended period of time you are essentially telling Google "this page has moved to this address, from now on send people to the new page".

So unfortunately there really isn't much you can do to get your website (that has no content on it and just redirects) to show up in the search results. Google just doesn't see any value in keeping it indexed.

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I feared that was the case. I guess I'll go about suggesting an feature upgrade to Google's search algorithm :P That can't be hard right? –  Dave Goten Sep 17 '12 at 21:19

Why don't you put the text www.foo.com/bar in your www.bar.com/page.php?some-parameters-and-utm-codes-etc page? If someone searches for the text www.foo.com/bar your page should rank for it.

Perhaps stick a sentence in there somewhere that says "this page is redirected from www.foo.com/bar".

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