How to Implement a 301 Redirect

    By Steve Axt | Small Business

    How to Implement a 301 Redirect image A Quick Browser Redirect FixHow to Implement a 301 Redirect

    Intro to redirects

    I wanted to share the importance of redirects and how to implement them. There are several types of redirects but the two most common are a 301 and a 302 redirects. Implementing a redirect can be a confusing task because the method of implementation depends on several factors. These include the platform the site is built on and the server type.

    Why they are Important

    External links that point to a particular webpage pass page-rank through the link which helps increase the authority of the destination URL. You also want to prevent broken links from appearing within your website. Any page returning a 404 error should be redirected to a similar URL.


    One day you decide you need to reorganize your website and during this process, your URLs are going to change. The URL change would cause all external links that point to the original URL to now point to a page that no longer exists. This page would return a 404 server error. The new URL would also have no SEO value even though the content is similar. Basically, it would be like starting over with the new URL structure.

    How to Transfer Value to the New URL

    301 redirects help combat this issue by telling the search engines that a particular URL is being moved or removed. A 301 redirect is important because it informs the search engines that a page has moved permanently. These are also beneficial because most of the page’s SEO value is passed to the new URL through the redirect. On the other hand, a 302 redirect is for a page that has moved temporarily. It is not recommended because it does not pass any SEO value to the new page. You should only use a 302 redirect when a page is temporarily going to be down or the page is getting maintenance.

    How to Implement a 301 redirect on an Apache server

    Log into the website’s FTP server and locate the .htaccess file in the root directory. This will be the top level directory of your website.

    Next open this file in a text editor. (Note that is isn’t a standard file extension and the .htaccess does not have file extension at the end like other types of files. For example common windows files often end in .txt, .doc, etc.

    How to Implement a 301 Redirect image htcaccessHow to Implement a 301 Redirect

    To create the redirect you need to tell the server the original URL and the new URL. It should look like the screenshot above.


    WordPress extensions make implementing 301 redirects very easy. I currently prefer using the plugin called WordPress SEO by Yoast. It allows you to easily add redirects to any post currently on the blog. After loading the blog post, scroll down until you see WordPress SEO by Yoast. Next look for 301 redirect and add the new URL that this page will redirect to.

    How to Implement a 301 Redirect image Wordpress For YoastHow to Implement a 301 Redirect

    Implement a 301 Redirect on a Windows IIS Server

    The first step is to open the internet services manager. You can find this by going to Start

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