Redirecting to please search engines

Giganews Newsgroups
Subject: Redirecting to please search engines
Posted by:  Marc Bradshaw (mbradsh…@beasolutions.com)
Date: Thu, 21 May 2009

Most of our websites are written in PHP with a MySQL back end.
Simplified, every page is stored as a record in the database and
templates are used for display of content.  This means that there is
always a /home or /welcome record which acts as the home page for the
website.  In the past I have always just done a straight header redirect
to send visitors (and search engines) to /home whenever they have not
specified a page.

Few of our websites get good search engine rankings quickly, the few who
are on the first page of results for their keywords have to build up a
lot of links and it generally takes a year or more to get to page 2/3.

I know that Search Engine Optimisation is a complex and time consuming
task, but I wonder if this redirect could be a hindrance - should we be
doing a 301 moved permanently redirect?  We use this type of redirect
(set in the .htaccess file, though we could do it in the PHP) to
redirect from domain.com to www.domain.com, but is a 301 also
appropriate to redirect to the home page when none has been specified?

Your views and advice would be welcome.

Marc

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Marc Bradshaw
BEA Solutions Ltd.

Portsmouth, UK

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