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I have a company website for our Internet agency for over 5 years. It holds blog posts, content pages, and our portfolio mainly.

One of our biggest competitors, with mainly the same company activities as we have, went bankrupt because it lost 2 of its biggest clients. I bought their domain from the curator, and it's now ours. I don't have their old website.

The domain has a lot of relevant incoming links, and a high domain authority. Besides that I can see that it also still has a lot of traffic from people that know the old company and look to render its services.

I changed the DNS so it's the same as my website, so: www.example.com/portfolio.html = www.competitors-example.com/portfolio.html

And I check incoming links to the new domain and redirect them to relevant pages on my site.

But is this right? Or should I redirect it to my domain so the address bar says: www.example.com?

In short: How do I use the domain so it doesn't hurt but helps my website's SEO?

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I changed the DNS so it's the same as my website

Does this mean your website is now displaying on their domain? If so undo this ASAP, as this will create a duplicate of your site, which could have na adverse effect on your sites ranking.

You should 301 redirect their domain to your domain. Where possible redirect pages on their site to relevant pages on your site, or to the nearest relevant page.

www.competitors-example.com/prices.html

301 redirects to

www.example.com/our-prices.html

If no relevant page exists, 301 redirect the page to the home page.

Before doing this though, I would investigate their back links to make sure there are no potentiality bad bad links present, as they could pass over to your domain and cause issues. As well as your own common sense, there are tools on the market to help identify bad badlinks.

You could then do a link disavow in Google Webmaster Tools, on your domain to exclude any such backlinks.

Doing all of the above will pass over most of the SEO authority to your site and will also make sure people land on your site when accessing the old domain.

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    For the acutal visitors, you might want to show them you took over, with a friendly "hey, but we're just as awesome!". Confused users will leave your site faster, some info fixes a lot. – Martijn Mar 2 '15 at 12:05
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    @Martijn, thanks for the tip! The thing is, I just made a .htaccess that sends www.competitors-example.com/prices.html to www.example.com/our-prices.html . This works for all pages, even root. But now I never know if people come from the old domain, or the new one. Any tips? – Hans Wassink Mar 2 '15 at 12:21
  • You could add #refered to your URL and use JS to show a infobox, or $_SERVER['REFERER'] in PHP do show/hide something – Martijn Mar 2 '15 at 12:25
  • As far as I know, and I tried, $_SERVER['REFERER'] and $_SERVER['HTTP_REFERER'] wont show anything if another domain is involved. But I added #refered. Does this have any SEO implications? – Hans Wassink Mar 2 '15 at 14:12
  • Can you just use Google analytics's to find the referring domain? – Max Mar 3 '15 at 3:03

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