Ive recently acquired a new domain that i want to point at our existing domain, ive setup hosting for the new domain and then done a 301 redirect in the .htaccess file of the new domain to my existing domain.

I then wanted to tell google about this new site 301 redirecting to ourselves, so i set the site up in Google Webmaster Tools, I then added the site as the www version and non-www version. To make Google recognize the redirecting i fetched as google bot.

For the non-www site it fetched fine, it noticed the 301 redirect and then allowed me to submit to index.

For the www site it keeps giving me a "Temporarily unreachable" message for the status of the crawl (see below screenshot) - any ideas why this might be ? Ive only recently moved the domain so i thought it might be a propagation issue, but its strange that the non-www version worked which leaves me to believe otherwise.

screenshot from the fetch as google page in webmaster tools

(The www version of the site is set as the preferred version in webmaster tools)

  • 1
    You do not need to use Fetch as Google for this. You do not have to tell Google much of anything- they will figure it out okay. But, I have to say, this is a puzzler. I would wait to make sure that the DNS records have propagated- 48-72 hours. If your redirect works okay, I would not worry about it. As well, you will see that only one of your sites in WMT will have any pages. This is normal for what you are doing. Just make sure the redirect works for you and double-check your DNS setting JIC. If this is okay, you should be fine.
    – closetnoc
    Commented Jun 8, 2015 at 16:23
  • How does Google know it's "temporary"?
    – MrWhite
    Commented Jun 8, 2015 at 21:29
  • @w3d - Its not the redirect thats temporary, google is giving and error that says temporarily unavailable - in the screeenshot its to the right of the red alert circles
    – sam
    Commented Jun 8, 2015 at 21:34
  • Yes. But what I'm saying is, how did Google know the error was only "temporary". i.e. "Temporarily unavailable", rather than simply "unavailable". That would seem to imply that "Google knows" that it will be available at some point, so is likely to be an error at Google's end or the (immediate) network?
    – MrWhite
    Commented Jun 8, 2015 at 21:48

1 Answer 1


This seemed to resolve itself. I ran the fetch again several hours later and it worked.

  • I had to give this answer a 1-up because it seems that google likes to take its sweet time updating things with regards to websites. I find it takes between 24 and 48 hours for most things to happen. Congrats on getting the fetch done so fast! Commented Jun 8, 2015 at 23:06

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