I've recently inherited a quite popular website (fan page for a band), but the old webmaster had to take it down because of GDPR issues. There was a lot of content available on the website. I plan to rebuild the website from scratch for a big relaunch and in the meantime I want to put up a "Under Construction" message. I plan to make the same content from the old website available again.

Should I block search engine web crawlers with a robots.txt file until the relaunch is finished? How does this affect my page rank?

1 Answer 1


Your page rank if not affected is the unavailability is short, like a day. For extended periods of time you should notify your visitors and the search engines that the site is temporarily unavailable.

Have all the pages redirect the visitor with a 302 status (temporarily moved to another location) to a page that gives 503 error (temporarily unavailable).

Here you can find more information.

I should also add that what the author suggests (configuring the .httaccess file for the redirections) is in fact not recommended. If you have the option you should set up the redirection on a server configuration file and only result to a httaccess file if you have no admin control on your server.


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