People have often noticed when they move a site from one domain to another, using a 301 redirect, that it seems that old domain will kick around in the search results for quite some time, even after the new one is indexed.
A website changed business & domain name. Pages are still showing in search with old domain. 301 redirects have been set up but I must change search listings so new name and domain appear. Is change of address in Search Console the best way to do this?
John Mueller mentions that there are multiple guidelines in Search Console with instructions on how to do this properly.
Then he continues and mentions the side effect of a site move that many people see – the old site remaining indexed, despite a 301 redirect to a new one.
The thing to keep in mind is that even if you have a redirect set up, it’s going to take quite some time if you do a specific search for the old domain for that to really drop out. So for a certain amount of time, we’ll probably try to be smart and say “oh, this person is searching for the old domain and we know about this old domain, so we’ll show that to you in the search results”, and that’s probably not what you are trying to achieve there.
So that’s something where if you do a site query for the old domain, you’ll almost, kind of need to be prepared for those numbers to be there for quite a long time… maybe months, maybe a year even, before they eventually drop out.
But the good news there is that if someone is searching for your business name, or for your company or type of business that you’re doing, then we’ll be showing the new domain as much as possible.
So essentially if you are looking for the old URLs then we’ll try to show those to you anyway, so that’s not a good metric to try to focus on. But if yo are searching for your business name, then that’s something we’ll probably pick up on fairly quickly.
This does make a lot of sense. There have been many times that people didn’t hear about a rebrand and incorrectly believe the company has gone out of business. So being able to search for the old domain name, and then showing it – which should lead to the new domain if the redirects are implemented correctly – means fewer lost customers from those who aren’t aware of the domain change.
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