[ic] Search engines reindexing when moving to Interchange fromanother shopping cart

Jonathan Clark jonc at webmaint.com
Mon Aug 30 06:35:41 EDT 2004

> We have recently moved a site onto Interchange from another shopping cart
> and wish to encourage the search engines to reindex the site.
> Currently, any old pages return the "missing.html" page which is
> informative
> enough to a human, but from looking at the Apache logs it still seems to
> return a Status 200 OK.
> So, I am thinking of changing the missing.html page to the following:
> ########
> [tag op=header interpolate=1]
> Status: 301 moved
> Location: [area href="index.html"]
> [/tag]
> ########
> so that any missing page is redirected to the home page and returns a
> "Status 301, moved (permanently)".
> Is this a sensible approach, or should I be doing something different?

If you want to retain positioning and page rank for your existing indexed
pages this is not the best method. As has already been mentioned, the best
way would be to redirect each page to its new location.

You could do this with apache redirects or through IC, as you describe
above. 301 redirects are the best way of telling the search engines where
your pages have moved to.

By redirecting every page back to the homepage you are making sure people
don't see an error, but confusing them by not presentng the content they are
expecting, or a page optimised for conversions relating to their search
terms (assuming ecommerce).

We have used both methods above for sites. We have also used appropriate
redirects where a product range has changed, or skus have changed for
existing products. You could do this, or at least send people to a category
page instead of the homepage.

> Also, we have registered both the .co.uk and .com variants of the domain
> name.  The .com is the main site, but we would like to forward
> the .co.uk to
> the .com.  What is the correct way to do this so that the search engines
> recognise the .com as the main site and the .co.uk as just an alias.  I
> guess the first step is to set up a CNAME DNS entry for the
> .co.uk to point
> to the .com?  But the only problem then is that the .co.uk address is
> displayed in the browser bar if the user arrives at the site by typing in
> the .co.uk domain name.  I would like the address bar to always show the
> .com, but I am also concerned to ensure that the .co.uk is not seen as
> duplicate content (that may lead to penalisation by Google).
> I realise my last question is a little off-topic (i.e. not specifically
> Interchange related), but I can't seem to find a definitive
> answer anywhere
> else so would be really grateful for some help here.  :-)

You won't find a definitive answer because the people who write the search
engine algos don't answer the questions ;-)

I would use a 301 redirect here also. Assuming you have no pages indexed for
the .co.uk then you just have to redirect the index page.

If your target audience it primarily uk though it would be better to have
the site on the .co.uk as this is likely to fair better in a uk specific


Jonathan Clark
Managing Director,
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