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I have a client who currently runs a venue and has ticket purchases made available through a third party. The way the site currently works is that there is a standard href in the nav menu to the ticket purchasing site.

<a href'http://example.com/events'>Events</a>
<a href'http://example.com/about'>About</a>
<a href'https://someticketvendor.com/myclient?blah'>Tickets</a>

They claim that they want to improve their SEO by appearing to integrate the ticket pages into their site. Having spoken to the ticket vendor, they only offer integration through iframes which is just horrible. I don't really know much about SEO but I'm wondering if I can create an htaccess rule to have http://example.com/tickets forward to href'https://someticketvendor.com/myclient?blah

Are they are any negative SEO implications to doing this? Is there a better way this could be done?

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2 Answers 2

When you are dealing with cross-site URLs, rewrite rules can only offer redirects. Rewrite rules that make the content of one URL appear on another URL only work when the content resides on the same server.

The biggest SEO advantage to having ticket functonality on-site would be to attact " tickets" queries that are likely going to the ticket site now.

Here are some other possibilites:

  • Have a page on your site about tickets and have users click from that page to the external ticket site (add an extra click for users)
  • Use mod_proxy to set up a reverse proxy of the ticket site. This would similar to the rewrite solution that you were proposing. It might have some technical issues, and you would need to get permission from the ticket site do so.
  • Host a form on your site that collects the information from the user (name, address, what tickets are desired, etc), but then have the form submit to the ticket site.
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Google doesn't dislike iframe afterall Google Maps, Youtube and many of their own services are iframe based. You should just ensure that the pages that are embedding the iframe are high quality with their own 'content' otherwise simply don't expect to rank well on those pages since well you're not offering anything else that people can view else where.

So the thing to avoid here is duplicate content as much as possible by writting unqine content, a page that simply contains an iframe will not rank well at all if dozens of other sites use the same... But this has nothing to do with iframe, it has to do with Google disliking duplicate content so even if it wasnt an iframe if the content was copied it can still be slapped.....

But since its just tickets the content is thin anyway and I'd expect their to be unqine content on the pages that matter.

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Sorry I should have said more clearly that we'd like to avoid using an iframe if at all possible. Even the third party vendor have admitted that they've had problems with 3rd party cookies etc using iframes on mobile devices so discourage that approach where possible. –  Chris Robinson Oct 7 '13 at 20:20
    
The better way would be using an API, but thats out of your hands. You could also look at PHP fetch but you'd need permission. –  bybe Oct 7 '13 at 21:03
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