December 01, 2017

How to Enable Domain Redirection in Blogger


Have you almost established your blog on a custom domain? Mmm... Looking forward to? Great! If you are an early friend or follower of cracko, you might recall moving this blog to a custom domain after about 1 and 1/2 year of survival on blogspot subdomain - cracko17.blogspot.com. Does this domain name makes sense at all? Wrong question, kiddo! ;) 


A Look Back


If you are still blogging on blogspot subdomain and willing to step into a custom domain in future, you might like to read How to Purchase and Set Up a Custom Domain for Your Blog in Blogger, and have it as a reference when you are gonna make it happen. As you go through that post, you can get an idea why a custom domain is a good investment toward blogging too.

As I've chosen GoDaddy as my Domain Name Registrar and purchased my custom domain through them, I had to go through the process of setting up my blog with GoDaddy. It was a smooth process as they had a simple tool to take care of updating DNS records. Then I turned my experience into a post too. 

Wish if I could write tutorials on setting up with other Domain Name Registrars too. But, I had no experience with others so far. But you can make use of references and posts / articles written by other authors online.

Domain Redirection


From now on, this post is focusing on bloggers who already made the transition. I mean, who already set up custom domains for their Blogger blogs.

Recently, Kaarunya, a new reader of my blog reached me out and asked about redirecting non-www to www version of the domain. Thanks to her, I thought I should come up with a post eventhough I had steps mentioned in above mentioned posts. As I decided to discuss them here, I've updated old topics with the reference to this post.

What is Domain Redirection? A good question! Let me explain without going into technical references.

Take this weblog's default domain - www.cracko.net. You always find URLs of my blog posts starting with that domain name. What if someone type in cracko.net instead (Without preceding WWW)? Even they both looks similar to us, technically they are different and there's a whole different background story.

WWW vs Non-WWW


What you need to keep in mind is that, as you purchase a domain, both www and non-www versions are under your control. Even we may find www and non-www versions are like two primary domain versions, they aren't. It's solely your preference to appoint either www or non-www version of your custom domain to your blog / website.

WWW - www.cracko.net

Non-WWW - cracko.net

Non-WWW aka naked domain is the base domain and www version is just a subdomain of your domain. What you really purchase is, the non-www version. Let me show you few examples, so you might find it easy to digest.

www.cracko.net is a subdomain

blog.cracko.net is a subdomain

contact.cracko.net is a subdomain

cracko.net is a base domain

Why Redirect Your Domain?


Even my blog is set up with www.cracko.net, it doesn't assure to send users who type in cracko.net instead.

As you already learnt, they both are identical and I could set up another blog in base domain too - cracko.net. But we usually don't 'cause it may just kill the branding opportunity and visitors can be confused landing on two different web pages even both the blog addresses are looks pretty similar. Remember, for visitors' eyes, they both seem alike. Technically, they are not.

The reason behind domain redirection is... umm... let me put it this way - to avoid the confusion.

By redirecting, you assure even the visitors type in cracko.net will land on www.cracko.net. Even all the web pages available on the domain.

If you redirect non-preferred domain to preferred domain, even those who type in your blog URL without preceding www will land on your blog too. if non-www version is your preferred version, it will send visitors to your blog even they mistakenly type in www too.

Unless, those who type in your non-preferred domain name will end up staring at a 404 or Page Not Found page.

Test It Out!


Now it's time to know how redirection works for you on Blogger. Well, even if you are not using Blogger platform, you must assure redirection works for your custom domain as well.

If your blog almost on a custom domain, type in non-preferred domain name and see where it will leads you. If your default blog address is www.domain.com, type in domain.com. Else, type in www.domain.com.

Could you land on your blog eventhough you had non-preferred domain name entered in the address bar?

If non-preferred domain name doesn't land you on your blog, you might wanna consider following the steps below to assure everyone will land on your blog safely with no confusions :) It's just a matter of a setting.

If you must know, Blogger will use 301 Moved Permenantly redirect to send visitors to your preferred domain. It will ensure, not only the visitors that access your blog, but also the search engines will be directed to the correct page. Isn't it great?

Now, let Matt Cutts fetch some information about server side 301 redirects from the search engine perspective. If you feel it's a bit technical, you can skip the video.


Wanna redirect your non-preferred domain and save visitors from confusions? Let's get started!


Steps:

1. Go to Blogger Dashboard.

2. Click on your Blog Title.

3. Navigate to Settings tab.


4. Find Publishing heading on Basic tab and click Edit link next to your custom domain.


5. Now check the Redirect mydomain.com to www.mydomain.com or Redirect www.mydomain.com to mydomain.com option.


6. Click Save button.

Note: It may take 30 minutes or more, up to 24 hours to start redirecting.

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