Google & the WWW Issue

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It would appear as if both www and non-www versions of websites are no longer being treated by Google as separate pages, at least where Page Rank is concerned.

We know that the visible PR in the tool bars is only a loose indication of a site’s actual PR, but it can still be frustrating when you see a low PR for the non-www version, and a higher PR for domains with the www. Recently we have noticed that the PR displayed is now the same for both versions.

I have checked out a few sites where I know the non-www version was displaying a lower PR, and now all are equal. This is certainly a good thing as it is likely a step in the right direction where having both versions will not present any duplicate content issues.

Until such time that duplicate content is no longer a potential hazard, it is still highly recommended to use mod rewrites to permanently 301 redirect traffic to one version of your site. This will eliminate the duplicate content concerns when pertaining to www issues. If you currently use a Google Webmasters account, we also recommend you select the preferred domain to have the site displayed the way you want. For more details on how to play it safe and consolidate www and non-www links here is a tutorial published exclusively at WilsonWeb.com and written by Ross Dunn.

In virtually all situations sites which are visible with both the www and non-www versions are not attempting anything fishy, so it only makes sense that Google should treat both versions as the same URL.

Google & the WWW Issue
About Scott Van Achte
Scott Van Achte is the Senior SEO at StepForth Web Marketing. Since Joining the StepForth team back in early 2003 he has thoroughly enjoyed working in the search engine industry. When he is not busy earning his keep, Scott can be found spending quality time with his wife Lyndsay and new daughter Emma. Scott would be happy to answer any questions and can be reached at scott@stepforth.com. WebProNews Writer
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  • http://www.rankbetterseo.com/seo-web-design.php seo web design

    I think that they might be treating the PR tool bar the same for both but there are many sites out there that 301 the www to the non-www or vice versa and I dont know if the PR is dependent on dupe content or not.  Google might still be penalizing these pages from a dupe content standpoint but keeping the PR toolbar rank the same.  Also they might be the same becuase somewhere ont he site is linking to the non-www version and passing page rank juice to this duplicate subdomain link.  Verdict is still out.

  • http://www.seowebdesignfirm.com/ seo company syracuse

    great article Scott, enjoyed the read.

  • http://www.articleblip.com/article/news/weird-news weird news

    I still cant understand why the serach engines just dont pick one and say all sites will be 301’ed to either the www or the non www site, taking into account and excluding an other sub level domains.

  • http://www.answeraddict.com/faq/gaming-questions gaming questions

    Even if Google said they could handle it, I would still do the redirect.

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