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SEO, URI's and routing.... Best practices?

#1
[eluser]Dandy_andy[/eluser]
Firstly, I have to say how amazing I am finding Codeigniter having used it for only a couple of months. It has made my life so much easier. Anyway, on to my question. My question is more related to SEO really but ties in with Codeigniter. I have a site where the homepage is:-

www.sitename.com/home/page/search

Basically, I want all new visitors and search engines to find my homepage at:-

www.sitename.com

So I have set a my default route to the above and all is fine. However, I have been reading that rankings are affected by multiple routes to the same page. Foe example, using the re-route method, anyone can get to the home page through either of the options above. Will this impact my SER?

Does anyone have any SEO experience with this and can anyone recommend the best practice for the codeigniter URI structure?

Thanks in advance.

#2
[eluser]tomcode[/eluser]
Using another page than the domaine name as home page is not a good idea, especially Your example (too many segments).

Having duplicate content neither (same page with several URL's).

You should structure Your controllers in a way that You get good URL's without routing.

Set Your site up in Google Webmaster Tools.

Read for example Google Webmaster Tools Help - SEO

Another site to read : The blog of portent.com

#3
[eluser]Aken[/eluser]
It will NOT affect your search engine rankings as long as engines cannot find the alternate URL. Yes, duplicate content is bad, but if you do not incorporate the "duplicate" page as part of your website, no one will ever know it's there.

You could also set up a route to block that particular URI, and redirect it to a 404 page, if you wanted additional peace of mind. But the biggest thing is to never create links or references to duplicate content on your website.

#4
[eluser]boltsabre[/eluser]
In your base controller folder create/edit the index.php controller file... this is your home page. Put all your homepage functionality in the index method inside the index.php controller (index methods run by default when no other methods are called).

Use .htaccess to do a 301 permanent redirect from www.domain.com/index.php to www.domain.com.

You can get clever and put other functions in your index.php controller (how about "privacy_policy", or "contact_us", basically all your static site wide pages, so that the urls will look like "www.domain.com/contact_us").

This fixes all your problems in a 100% safe (including SEO) way. A 301 redirect tells google that "this page does/did exist, but it has been permanently moved to the new url, for all intents and purposes ignore this page, and please visit and pass any existing link juice to the new url.

On a side note... you should also pick a preferred url structure (with our without www. and if you will have a type extension such as .html, .htm, .php). I'd personally forget the type extenstion, and suggest this structure: www.domain.com/somecontroller/somemethod/somevarialbe

Again use your .htaccess to perform 301 redirects on all pages/links/urls without www. to www., I'd also 301 all pages with trailing slashes to a url with it removed.

Then... once you have your preferred url structure USE IT EVERYWHERE and NEVER use something else... if you're giving your url to someone so they can link to you, give the the correct version!

A 301 from an incorrect url to the correct one will loose a little link juice, and it also requires a little extra server processing time, thus reducing page load speed.


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