A redirect is when one URL redirects (redirects the user) to another URL. When a user enters a specific URL into their browser or clicks on a link with that URL, they are automatically redirected to the target URL.
For example, if you had «oldcontent.com» and you want visitors to go to «newcontent.com», you can set up a redirect so that anyone trying to go to «oldcontent.com» is automatically taken to «newcontent» .com
Technically, all short links are redirects, because a short URL simply redirects to a long URL.
What are Redirects and why is it important?
Typically, there are two redirects used for SEO: 307 (temporary redirect) and 301 (permanent redirect). These are the two most common types. The number 301 or 307 represents the HTTP code.
What is a 307 redirect?
A 307 redirect is temporary, and while it is often not considered useful for SEO, it can be useful for short links. A 307 code is sent when the document is temporarily available at a different URL. It tells search engines that this redirect may change in the future, so don’t index the link and always check for the most recent content. A 307 redirect is handy if you think your target URL might change at some point.
For example, you might have a link to a site where the distribution of content changes monthly. Or a link to a discount page that changes as different promotions are launched. Since the target content changes periodically and the original URL remains the same, it makes sense to use a 307 redirect.
What is a 301 redirect?
A 301 redirect is a permanent redirect from one URL to another that transfers the SEO ranking to the redirected page. They are called «persistent» because search engines like Google expect your target URL to never change, so they can cache the URL. Proxies and caching servers (including most browsers) can also cache the target URL, which may not provide accurate click counts.
For more accurate click tracking, you’d better use 307 redirects on non-SEO channels like Twitter, email, ads, any site that requires login, and links on your social media profile pages.
Should I choose 307 or 301 redirects?
The short answer is, it depends on what’s most important to you and your business.
If SEO is a high priority, choose 301 redirects for your links. 301 redirects are generally considered the best for SEO and page rank.
If accurate click tracking is more important than SEO and you plan on changing your URL periodically, then a 307 temporary redirect might be the way to go.
The most important thing to remember is that there is no one right answer. Start by defining your goals, and then choose the type of referral that will best help you achieve them.