301 vs 302 redirect

Permanent 301 vs Temporary 302 Redirects – Which one is Better?

Redirects play an important role when it comes to user-experience and SEO. So, Let’s start this session with Redirection. 

First question which comes to mind is – “What does redirection mean in Search Engine Optimization?”

Redirection is the process of sending crawlers and visitors from the requested URL to the relevant URL. Redirect is a great approach for a better user experience instead of forwarding users to an annoying web page with 404 error messages.

Why Redirection?

Some instances of using a redirection status codes are –

  • Website URL is broken or not working
  • Transferring old URL’s content to the new URL
  • A specific web page is no more required
  • To perform A/B testing on a particular web page
  • Needs to redesign the website
  • Going to merge two websites into one
  • Changing CMS platform of your website

Mainly, there are three types of redirects –

  • Permanent 301 Redirects
  • Temporary 302 Redirects
  • Meta Refresh Redirects 

Permanent 301 Redirects

301 Redirect is known as “Permanently Moved” Redirect. This redirect ensures that search engines and visitors are directed to the correct web page. 301 status code indicates that content of URL A is permanently moved to URL B with 90-99% of link equity and existing SEO value. Here are some scenarios to use 301 redirects –

  • 301 status code defines which domain is your default website – “www.xyz.com” or “xyz.com”.
  • Permanent moved redirect is also suitable when you integrate two websites together or want to replace outdated URLs with the new URLs.
  • Multiple URLs are used to access a website like with https://, http://, with www or without www. Choose one URL as a canonical and targeted location and apply 301 redirect to divert all traffic to the preferred URL.
  • 301 also used in http-to-https migration.

Once you are done with the 301 redirection, your old website is transferred to a new URL.

Example: “blog.adbizzo.com” redirects to “adbizzo.com/blog”

The Process Of 301 Redirect

 Here are three ways to apply a 301 status code. 

301 Redirect via cPanel

301 redirect via cpanel

cPanel is the easiest way to create a 301 permanently moved redirect. 

  • Login to cPanel
  • Go to Domains > Redirect
  • Choose “Permanent (301)”
  • Add “source url” and “redirect to”
  • Finally click “Add” to complete the redirection process.

301 Redirect Via .Htaccess

htaccess 301 rewrite

Want to transfer your old website to a new domain, for example you want to transfer your old URL adbizzo.com to https://www.adbizzo.com/. You can setup a 301 redirect. 

  • Go to cPanel > public_HTML > .htaccess.
  • Add the code –
    RewriteEngine on
    RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^adbizzo.com [NC,OR]
    RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^www.adbizzo.com [NC]
    RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://adbizzo.com/$1 [L,R=301,NC]
  • Save the changes and you’re good to go. 

301 Redirect Via WordPress

wp 301 redirect

If you have a WordPress website. Install “Redirect Plugin” to simplify the process of 301 redirection.

  • Go to Plugins > Add New > Redirections
  • Install and Activate Redirections plugin
  • Follow Tools > Redirection > complete the setup
  • Redirection > Redirect
  • Put source URL and target URL > Add redirect.

After doing it, you are all done with your old content and new domain.

Temporary 302 Redirects

302 Redirect is also known as “Temporarily Moved”. This redirection tells crawlers and visitors that the web page you are looking for is temporarily moved, but it will be back after sometime. With 302 redirects, your web content is just offline for a limited time with the page intact and not passing the link juice to another URL.

302 status code has two versions – 302 (HTTP 1.1) refers to “found” / 302 (HTTP 1.0) defines “Moved Temporarily”. You can create a 302 redirect using meta tag and javascript. Here are some reasons why and when to use 302 redirect –

  • Websites usually face technical glitches so developers take advantage of 302 redirect to convert the preferred URL (www.adbizzo.com) to a backup website (www3.adbizzo.com); meanwhile they work on the existing website. 
  • For A/B testing of a specific webpage to check functionality and design.
  • To get users’ suggestions on a new page without affecting website ranking.
  • Broken web page

302 redirect can not be the permanent solution because search engine backlinks will continue to redirect to the original URL.

The Process of 302 Redirect

Here, we are going to check out how to apply 302 redirects.

302 redirect via cPanel

302 redirect cpanel

The Simplest way to set up a 302 temporary redirect.

  • Login to cPanel
  • Go to Domains > Redirect
  • Choose “Temporary (302)”
  • Add “source url” and “redirect to”
  • Click “Add” to finish the 302 redirection process.

302 Redirect via .Htaccess

  • Redirecting single web page:
    Redirect /file-name.html http://www.domain.com/temporary-directory/temporary-file-name.html
  • Redirecting complete website:
    Redirect / http://www.temporary-domain.com/

 If you are using WordPress website, 302 Redirect can also be done using redirection plugins.

Meta Refresh

Meta refreshes redirect are done at page level. It is something that is executed on the live web page. But meta refresh is not a recommended SEO technique as it makes the web page slower than before. Meta refresh status code is usually correlated with the text “If you are not redirected in five seconds, click here”. This redirect passes some link equity with poor usability.

The meta refresh tag can be placed with your meta tags.
<META http-equiv=”refresh” content=”5;URL=https://www.adbizzo.com/”>

301 vs 302 redirects

Harness the power of your website using proper redirection status code according to business purpose and goals. Whether you use 301, 302, or meta refresh redirects, analyse your rankings to make sure that search engines are able to crawl and index redirected web pages.

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