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    For sure, every SEO specialist has encountered the concept of what a redirection map is. And if he has not yet learned on his own what the said map is, then certainly after reading the following post, he will find out exactly what it is about.  

    Redirection map – what’s that? 

    Explaining the concept of a redirection map in telegraphic terms would be to write that a redirection map is a file that juxtaposes old as well as new website url addresses Well. Just why juxtapose old and new website url addresses at all? 

    Redirection map - what's that?

    Redirection-map – what does it serve?

    Not infrequently we come to the conclusion that it is necessary, for example, to change the engine of the site, because a given technical solution no longer meets our expectations. Or simply, our website created several years ago is no longer able to work as we would like it to. Well, something starts to break down, and the fixes could prove more expensive than creating a new website. And that’s when a redirection map comes to our aid. 

    So we create a redirection map when we implement planned changes to the site, wanting to implement proper redirects within the changing url. 

    Redirection-map – should you always do it?

    As a general rule, a redirection map should be implemented when we change the url’s that are part of our website. However, it is worth analyzing first, whether it is really necessary to change url addresses. Definitely a much more recommended and welcome solution would be to keep the site structure and url addresses unchanged. Keeping the site structure unchanged and also the url unchanged avoids the need to implement redirects from the previous url to the current url. Thus, there is no need to prepare a redirection map. However, what when we actually cannot afford to keep the previous site structure as well as unchanged url addresses? 

    Redirects 3XX

    If, for various reasons, we are forced to also change the url addresses of our bookmarks when changing the site, having a map prepared, it will be necessary to implement proper redirects. 

    Implementing proper 3XX redirects – as a general rule – should help reduce fluctuations in the area of site visibility changes resulting from the site change. As well as, properly implemented redirects should help the new version of the site, or the new url get indexed much faster in the organic search results. 

    When implementing redirects, remember to make them 301, that is, permanent. This is important because this type of redirects will contribute to transferring some of the power from the existing linking to our site. We must also not forget to match the old and new url of our site as closely as possible. Ideally, redirects should be implemented in a 1:1 ratio. 

    How to collect url addresses to create a redirection map? 

    There are several ways to collect old url addresses and these include: 

    • using a site map
    • use of Screaming Frog, or another crawler, such as: OnCrawl or SiteBulb

    In the site map – as a rule – we should find all the necessary and valuable url addresses that make up our site. Hence, even before changing the site, it is advisable to export to excel all the url addresses that are part of the site map. However, taking into account the fact that not always the site map – for various reasons – may contain all valuable url addresses, as well as it may contain total unnecessary ones, it is worth using the above-mentioned tools to realize and save the technical crawl of the site, which is useful in such situations. I will also add at this point already that not all url addresses should be forcefully redirected. After all, a particular service, product or category may no longer exist on our new site. 

    Use subdomain

    Something can be forgotten. It happens to everyone. Hence, an interesting and alternative solution would be to move the old site to, for example, the aforementioned subdomain, with, of course, blocking the aforementioned subdomain from indexing. This type of solution – as long as we have the technical capabilities to do so – should be a kind of safety buffer in case of a surprising situation. After all, we will always, thanks to this solution, be able to return to preview our old website.

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    Mateusz Kocowski
    Mateusz Kocowski

    SEO specialist with several years of experience. He joined Up More in early 2023. Hundreds of websites have passed through his hands.