For a while I have been going to write a plugin that redirected visitors to your blog using the “wrong” type of url, with the “www” or without, whichever you preferred but before I had chance to write it I have been PM’ed by Gilad who has written a plugin for WordPress!
You can download it here. Dave, I think it would be a great addition to your next version of the metrics plugin?
Why would you want to redirect people using http://myblog.com when it still works? Well for a start right now Performancing Metrics does not see the two as the same blog so some of your visits are not recorded if visitors can use both versions. While we are going to address this in the future you can get a complete picture now by using redirects. Another reason to do it is if you care about search engine traffic. Check out this post from a while back for more information.
Search Engine Friendly Redirects | Performancing.com
There are two problems with Google that have frustrated webmasters for a little while.
The first is the issue where Google sees links to www.domain.com and domain.com and thinks they are two sites with duplicated content. And Google doesn’t like duplicate content, oh no it doesn’t. D’oh!
If someone wants to create problems for your blog or website they can just link to the version of your URL that you do not commonly use. This can get you indexed and cause you problems. No guarantees but do you want to take the risk?
Another way a competitor can cause you problems is to use a temporary redirect to link to your content. In many cases these are put in place perfectly innocently, they are easier on many platforms than permanent redirects and are often done just to count clicks. Problem is Google can see the redirecting site as owning the content (and therefore the rankings) rather than the target site. D’oh again.
So there you have it, using redirects or a plugin like this will help you with search engines and metrics, got to be worth a download!
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Author: Chris Garrett
Chris Garrett is a content marketing and blogging coach and co-author of the Problogger Book with Darren Rowse.
In reference to those of you who were looking to strip the “www.” from your url, I found a WP Plugin that redirects visitors to the URI you’ve specified in WP’s general options and strips off ‘index.php’ from the end of URIs at txfx.net. That way you have the flexibility to go www or non-www depending on what you specify in your general options. (*I’m hoping that this plugin is effective in addressing the issues discussed above.)
There’s additional reference information on redirecting web pages at Steven Hargrove’s site.
Gilad’s plugin adds “www.” to any url that doesn’t contain it, which is exactly the opposite of what I want:
I want to strip the “www.” from my url and just use the remaining part. I’m gonna tweak my download to do just this (unless someone else has already done so, then you can save me the work of learning enough PHP to get me through this hurdle — or not! 🙂
My experience is that sub-domain redirections to a sub-directory work well and keep the SE respect of the whole domain.tld intact.
I have never experienced that www contra non-www issue 🙂
I just use the .htaccess to 301 redirect people and bots to the www version of my sites, but for those of us who are not comfortable with hacking server side stuff a WP plugin sounds great.
And Google is flawed when it comes to this anyway. Recent publicity has shown that any subdomain, whether it be www. or “imanastycloakedscraperpage.domain.info” is treated strange in the SERP’s.