I am looking for the cleanest/SEO friendly way to redirect a subdomain (i.e. shop.example.com) to a sub-directory on the main domain (i.e. example.com/shop).

Further information

  • I will not keep the hosting where the shop. subdomain site is currently hosted. The contents of shop. will be transferred to the main domain which sits on a separate hosting platform.
  • I am able to add the subdomain to my existing (main website) hosting and update DNS A record pointing. As I use Plesk Server and can add it as a subdomain of the main domain.
  • I do have access to Google Search Console (unsure if I can advise of a change there)

Any advice much appreciated.

  • 2
    Did your subdomain have an SSL cert (I assume it probably did if it was a "shop")? What webserver are you using?
    – MrWhite
    Commented Jul 13, 2020 at 12:05
  • 1
    Whether your subdomain has an SSL cert will determine the cleanest way to do this. Commented Jul 13, 2020 at 20:13
  • 1
    Hi @MrWhite and Maximillian yes both the sub domain and main domain have SSL. The old shop site is on Shopify. Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 9:39
  • 2
    What is the web server (eg. Apache, Nginx, IIS) you are using? ("Plesk" is not a web server; it's a hosting control panel used to manage a server.)
    – MrWhite
    Commented Jul 21, 2020 at 14:59

1 Answer 1

  1. In GSC, add the shop subdomain as a profile and make sure there is a profile for the main domain too. Give the new profile(s) a day or two to get situated.

  2. If you haven't already, pick either www or non-www for your main site and make sure the URLs with the one redirect to the URLs of the other. Here's how to do with Apache for instance: https://www.siteground.com/kb/how_to_redirect_www_urls_to_nonwww/ . Also, here's an explanation for why choosing one is important: https://www.spyfu.com/blog/www-vs-non-www/

  3. Design the redirect mapping (https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6033086) and then set up the 301 redirects from the shop subdomain to their new counterpart pages on the main domain. Here's a guide about Shopify redirects: https://help.shopify.com/en/manual/online-store/legacy/menus-and-links/url-redirect .

  4. Once the 301s are done, then do a change of address from the subdomain profile to the main domain profile via search.google.com/search-console/settings/change-address .

The 301's will help redirect referral traffic immediately and the change of address in GSC will help Google understand that the shop domain is no more (along with all of the redirects too) and update domain and entity-related data involved with your existing rankings. I think that's everything since you're set with SSLs and whatnot.

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