Recently I did some 301 redirections on one of my websites. First I did the non www to www redirect on the .htaccess file. Then I did the list of 301 redirects from the old urls to the new ones. Redirects seems to be working properly reaching out all the way to the new url.

E.g. domain.com/page1.html--->www.domain.com/page1.html-->www.domain.com/newpage.html

Although this is part of what I set up (the non www to www redirect) I am concern for the final link not being recognize by search engines, because when I went to the 301 redirect checker it only recognized the 301 redirect from domain.com/page1.html to www.domain.com/page1.html

Should I be concern because the 301 redirect checker didn't recognize the last link, although users are getting there?

  • Not that it really matters (as stated in the answers), but you could reduce all these redirects to max 1 if you wanted by simply reversing the redirects (non-www to www last) and including an absolute URL in the substitution (which some would recommend you do anyway.)
    – MrWhite
    Mar 25, 2015 at 16:46

3 Answers 3


Search engines will follow multiple redirects as situations like yours are not uncommon. So having two redirects won't be an issue. (This also happens when users use URL shortners, or worse, chain them together which can happen when multiple parties want to track users).

But there is an upper limit to how many redirects a search engines will follow. I know an exact amount has never been publicly stated by any of the search engines but they have said there is a limit (at least I remember Matt Cutts saying so). But it certainly is not two.

  • 1
    In this Video of Matt Cutts from Aug 2011 regarding chained redirects he states, "if you can keep that down to one or two, maybe three, that's much better. Once you get five or six redirects in a row, in a chain, the odds are very, very low, close to zero, that Googlebot would actually follow all of those redirect hops to get to the new destination."
    – MrWhite
    Mar 25, 2015 at 16:02
  • @w3d Thank you. hat's the source I was looking for. I kept looking in his blog instead of his videos.
    – John Conde
    Mar 25, 2015 at 17:07

Whatever redirection tool you are using is probably bad. webpagetest.org can show you how well your redirects work. Just put in the first page (not the redirected page) and the first entry in the list of URL's the simulated web browser tried accessing will be shown in yellow to indicate a redirect, then the line following it will be the new URL.

Google can also check redirects via webmaster tools. use its crawl feature and if you see a yellow circle then you know its a redirect. Look at the detail pages to see what response it received.

I think apache by default does a maximum of 10 redirects before it resorts to displaying "the document has moved here" in your browser. Also, page-speed insights suggests to keep redirects to no more than one for optimum performance. Anything more, and theres issues.

  • "apache by default does a maximum of 10 redirects" - Apache limits the number of internal rewrites, not external redirects as being discussed here. It's the browser that limits the number of redirects, to protect the user. For example, stackoverflow.com/questions/9384474/…
    – MrWhite
    Mar 25, 2015 at 16:07

I read way back about having multiple redirects and how you can have a maximum of 3 recommended by Search Engines, is just that this was my first time setting up these 2 redirects at the same time. Thank you all for your inputs, I am less worried now for sure.

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