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We're about to launch a new Drupal 8 website for a client, as not all areas of the current website will be on the new platform, and due to apparent legacy complications, the decision has been made to go with the launch on a subdomian (new.clientwebsite.com) with the old Drupal 7 site staying on (www.clientwebsite.com).

The new platform has a different taxonomy and URL structure so We will, of course, be setting up 301's. My worry is that all new content will be indexed against a subdomain, which is only temporary and eventually will be phased out.

What, in your opinion would be the best option?

Should we block indexing of the new site (using Robots) which isn't ideal as the phasing out could take some time?

Any help or suggestions greatly appreciated.

  • "...and eventually will be phased out" - And then what? Where will the new site/content reside then? – MrWhite Jan 3 at 21:41
  • Yes sorry I wasn't very clear. The idea is to launch the new site on the subdomain and eventually switch over to the clientwebsite.com URL to the new platform ( once any technical issues have been dealt with). The new site has new content and new URL structure. My worry is there will be 2 sites being indexed wich will confuse users when searching – Jon Cayman Jan 6 at 10:31
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Since it's only temporary, you should use 302 redirect instead of 301. But my advice is don't use auto-redirect, but inform the visitor in existing/old website to try a new platform with a popup every visitor visit it or something else.

My worry is that all new content will be indexed against a subdomain

Why are you worrying about it? I don't see any negative impact if your new platform indexed. If later you want to delete the indexed pages you can remove outdated content, but if you don't want your new platform to be indexed at all, yes, you can block indexing of the new site (using Robots). It should not have an impact on your existing website.

  • So you're suggesting more of an 'Open Beta' of the new website for users to try out? Kind of like a soft launch? I guess it's the confusion you would have for a user when they search for a term they may have a result duplicated in SERP on 2 different domains with different content on each? Not sure how search engines index 301/302 content? – Jon Cayman Jan 6 at 10:45

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