When moving a site from a subdomain to a primary domain, what's the best way to redirect the traffic
 by Kristi Hagen

When moving a site from a subdomain to a primary domain, what's the best way to redirect the traffic?

  • I have a client who is moving domains. The site is large and currently resides on a subdomain. The new site structure will be the same. The web designer plans to use the .htaccess file (or some form of Javascript coding?) to take a URL like:

    https://content.current-domain.co.uk/index.php?route=product/category&path=69_164

    ...and then change it to:

    https://www.new-domain.co.uk/index.php?route=product/category&path=69_164

    ...as a form of 301 redirect.

    Is this the best way and what are the downsides if any?

Answer:

Yes, you should use a 301 redirect, typically in the .htaccess file, to accomplish this task. We recommend this article – How to Use a 301 Redirect – as a reference. Just follow the steps.

Additionally...

  1. Regarding the old site; hopefully you have that property/domain verified in Google Search Console. If not, get the old domain verified before moving it. Doing this will enable you to inform Google that the site has moved. Remember, you must verify the subdomain: content.current-domain.co.uk, NOT www.new-domain.co.uk
  2. Next activate your 301 redirect when you are ready to launch the new www.new-domain.co.uk domain.
  3. Verify the new domain in Google search console.
  4. Finally, submit a change of address notification for the old domain to Google Search Console - for instructions go here.

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