Sign up ×
Webmasters Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for pro webmasters. It's 100% free, no registration required.

At the present moment I have a website hosted on, where hosts in its root directory a different website. I have the domain, which redirects to The point, however, that right now when somebody accesses they are redirected to and consequently to, etc..

I am now thinking about upgrading my account so that no longer redirects to - I was however wondering, however, since Google shows results searches in terms of, how would this affect my rankings?

share|improve this question

2 Answers 2

When you move content from a sub-directory to its own domain, you typically lose Google rankings for up to a year until Google starts to trust the domain.

Google has launched features in Webmaster Tools to help change the domain name of an entire site, but they don't support moving a portion of a site.

share|improve this answer
Any site move will result in some fluctuations for some time, as the signals propagate, but you shouldn't lose rankings for a year (for most sites it's somewhere between days and a month or so, depending on the size). – John Mueller May 22 '13 at 11:49
That is better than last time I tried it a few years ago. I lost rankings for 8 months when I moved a site from a subdomain of my main site onto its own domain name. – Stephen Ostermiller May 22 '13 at 12:02

Ideally, there woud be 301 redirects from URLs to pages after you have upgraded. Ask your host about this.

If the 301s are not possible, the next best way is to use meta-refresh redirects without delays (while keeping the old pages there for this purpose).

For example, on the head section of, there should be

<meta http-equiv=refresh content="0; url=" />

Google recognizes these as 301 redirects, so the ranking benefits are transferred to the pages.

It's important that you do these from page to page, in an unique manner - not redirecting every page to root.

share|improve this answer
Hi Arttu, this is qute different from what Stephen answered, coul dyou please clarify on whether benefits are transferred or not? :) – MrD May 19 '13 at 22:40
Hi Dario, if you use meta-refresh or regular 301 redirects as I suggested, most (not necessarily all) ranking benefits are transferred. 301 is a way to tell search engines about mere URL and domain changes. This is common SEO knowledge, not anything controversial. :) – Arttu Raittila May 19 '13 at 22:49
Your search engine trust is more site-specific than domain-specific. As long as the site stays the same, the domain change doesn't reset the trust (if you have the 301s/meta-refreshes in place). – Arttu Raittila May 19 '13 at 23:04

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.