MSN Loses (Badly) In 301 Indexing Race
Moving a website can be intimidating, especially if it’s a bigger site. There will almost certainly be a loss of traffic, and much of that is due to the time it takes the search engines to recognize the new site. There are ways to dull the pain, but don’t count on Microsoft for it.
Over at SEObook, Aaron Wall presents a case study on 301 redirects and how quickly it takes the search engines to recognize a website’s new home. Google and Yahoo won that race, with Microsoft seemingly forgetting there was a race to begin with. MSN still hasn’t shown up.
"The big shocker is that MSN is so bad at following 301 redirects that they now send the site 0 traffic. The old site is listed URL only, while the new site is not listed," he writes.
The conclusions of Wall’s case study:
1. Move in the off-season
2. Increase ad spend
3. Block indexing of low-information pages
4. Bring profitable pages forward, emphasizing them with position and internal link structure.
5. Move it page by page for speed testing.
6. Issue press releases, submit to directories, build links.
Wall goes into way more detail at his site, complete with stats.