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my question pertains to the trailing slash and no slash in domains and the correct method for setting this up in Google Webmaster tools. I have read all other threads on this site related to this question and still cannot understand what is correct for my situation - please help.

I recently created a new blog on Blogger and I registered the [http:// no "www" with no "/"] and [http://"www" with no "/"] with the latter (http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com) being nominated as my preferred domain.

However, I recently noticed that both URL versions (slash (“/”) and no trailing slash) of my domain address return a HTTP/1.0 200 OK status code, which according to Google (e.g. Search Engine Optimisation Starter Guide) is bad and will cause issues in terms of duplicate content and diluted links /split page rank.

From what I understand the method to rectify this is to create a 301 redirect from one to the other (depending on preference and/or performance).

My preference would be to use the "www" and no trailing slash, purely because I think most people would use this.

By the way, if I enter ["www" with no "/"] version of my domain in a browser bar it does not (at least I don't think it does) auto add the slash however, if I copy and paste the the domain elsewhere, it displays as [http://"www" with a "/"]?? Does this mean that I am NOT using the trailing slash? I am confused.

How do I let Google know that I want the NO trailing slash version of my site recognized as my preferred site? Or have I already done this, by nominating http://www.example.com as the preferred site? Unlike a WordPress site, I do not have access to a htaccess file. Or do I register the [http://"www" with a "/"] version in Google Webmaster tools and nominate my existing [http://"www" with no "/"] a second time as the preferred domain? There is a redirect option in Blogger, but I think this is for pages and posts only…. I am not sure. Otherwise how do I use the rel=canonical tag in my template to achieve this? OR Do I need to nothing?

Apologies for all the information, I am fairly new to this and need help to understand.

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marked as duplicate by Ilmari Karonen, John Conde Jul 22 '13 at 14:16

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

3 Answers 3

Trailing slash canonicalization issues only apply to paths to pages within your site, e.g. http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com/somepage vs http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com/somepage/, or http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com/ vs http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com/index.html.

http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com/ and http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com are the same URL. If you type http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com into your browser's address bar, the path your browser sends the request for is /, so you don't need to worry about canonicalization of those URLs.

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It can be quite normal on the internet to have a domain that answers with and without a trailing slash, and Google does know how to deal with this. So my view is to leave it alone, but you could be consistent with your internal linking to refer to your preferred version.

Google does a very good job of canonicalisation, we can normally www -v non ww for a site in the same way the vast, vast, vast majority of the time with a slash and without a slash are the same webpage so we usually canonicalise or combine them together in a very good way so your page rank is not split between the two.

Source http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTrdP7lJ2HU

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It is true that Google is very good at identifying when duplicate content is accidental, however, it is still better to avoid this where possible. As you do not have access to the htaccess file this becomes more difficult.

I would suggest using a canonical url. This is not as strong as a redirect as it is not a directive, but instead it indicates which URL for a piece of content is the preferred URL for that content. This will need to be set for each page, for instance you would set it as:

<link rel="canonical" href="http://www.myunstoppablecareer.com/page-a"/>

This will not stop people/bots from accessing the page but if you get any links etc to the different versions of the pages, but on both pages it would point to the www version and help you consolidate your link equity and the value from the pages..

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