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Are Redirects Outdated?

Posted on 3.17.2013

Consider Bing to be a webmaster’s friend with a truck.  This is because Bing is helping them move. 

Webmasters can use Bing’s new Site Move tool to tell the search engine that their sites have moved and permanently redirected their sites, or sections of their sites, to a new location, which could eventually eliminate the need for redirects.

This new tool does not replace 301 redirects initially, but the Site Move tool can help website owners get their redirects reflected in Bing’s index more quickly. This is also important advancement for providing a better overall user experience, because webmasters who use too many redirects can slow down their website. 

Bing emphasizes that this tool is not just for domain moves. 

“Whereas other Webmaster Tools only allow a ‘Change of Address’ from one domain to another, we wanted to allow Web publishers more flexibility,” said Bing’s Webmaster Blog. “So, we will offer two different types of move notifications to support the following scenarios:

1. You are moving and redirecting a bunch of URLs from one place to another within the current site. This scenario is great if you want to notify us of a major URL move within the same site. This comes in handy when you’ve redesigned your Site Architecture and are now redirecting many URLs to new locations, and you want us to pick up on this change as soon as possible.

2. You are moving and redirecting URLs from this site to another verified site. This type is a great way to notify us that you are moving from one domain to another domain. You can move to any other domain that you have also verified as a site in Bing Webmaster Tools.”

Once a webmaster has selected one of these two options, they’ll need to select a move scope: domain, subdomain or directory. Additionally, before notifying Bing of a site move, make sure that the permanent redirects are set up correctly. Over time, the redirects will be obsolete as the new locations build links, trust, clicks, etc., but the transition will take time, which means webmasters should plan to keep the redirects in place for several months. 

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