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My site runs on WordPress. I have a custom post type of my Projects. These projects are categorized using Project categories. Each Project category has it's 'archive' page, where the projects are displayed. For every category (every archive page) I can set unique meta description, title, keyphrase and everything, which is great.

However, I am not using default WP's archive pages. I am using a JavaScript library (Isotope) to dynamically sort my projects in real time. I'm not going to elaborate, it just looks and feels better to have this interactive filter.

As a result, all of my Projects are being displayed on my Projects page:

mysite.com/projects/

All the archive pages for my project categories exist, though. So, I have:

mysite.com/project-category/some-category/
mysite.com/project-category/another-category/

(These archive pages have their own SEO meta data)

Since I do not want to use archive pages, I am redirecting every archive page automatically to my /projects/ page, with custom URL query parameter so the right projects are displayed by default on page load:

mysite.com/project-category/some-category/
# This is redirected to
mysite.com/projects/?category=some-category

Everything works well. The site technically is on /projects/ page, but 'some-category' is selected in Isotope filter automatically. However, search engines are reading the destination page's meta data - so I have the same generic meta title and description for every project category.

TL-DR: Can I force Google to consider source page meta data, instead of target page, when using 301 redirect?

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For the TLDR question - no. The return headers contain the 301 status code and therefore the rest of the content on the source page is not read. Once redirected to the target page, the 200 code is returned and the content is read.

The full question - there's probably same way to output the source metadata to a variable and then pull that variable on the new target page. Or maybe you can disable the archives completely but I'm not sure how your setup would work with these options.

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