Changing domain name of a site for SEO - Whats the process? 301, duplicate content

Okay, so here’s what im up to

I have a computer repair site for a local business

its at

I want to change the domain name for better SEO to:

My site currently has like 4-5 pages, so the front page is a copy letter or business intro, I have an about page, a contact page, and a services page… But I also have a blog with 4-5 posts on it on computer repair tips and tricks

If I want to move everything to the new site, whats the process I have to do?

If I just remake the website with the same content… will I rank badly because its considered duplicate content? What if I do that and 301 the old site (perma redirect) to the new site, without changing the content, will then it still remain original content?

Any ideas?

Thanks DP

1st get the new domain name.
2nd, hopefully you are hosting on a unix/php site. For the old domain use an include file in the new index.php that points to the new site. All of your old files should be easily hosted on the new site. The old content should be easily imported to the new site. Then it shouldn’t matter what domain name users link to.

If you set up your website at the new URL and then 301 redirect all pages from the old site to the new one (either by a mod_rewrite rule or just manually setting it for each page, which isn’t a huge job if you’ve only got a few pages) then search engines will understand that you have simply moved your website to a new domain name, and will transfer all the rankings and everything from the old URLs to the new ones.

What you don’t want to do is (i) leave the old site ‘live’, because then people will still be going to it, or (ii) close the old site with no redirect, because then anyone who has bookmarked the old site or follows an old link to it will just get an error page.


Thank you for the valuable information.

How do I update an .htaccess file to reflect a 301 redirect to the new domain ?

Kind Regards,

Mr. Alexander

If you don’t already have a .htaccess file, you’ll need to create one - just a plain text file in Notepad or something similar will do the trick. You might have a bit of difficulty persuading Windows to allow you to create a file that (it thinks) has an extension but no actual name, but there are ways round it.

Then, to do the redirects. The easiest way, if you don’t have a massive number of them, is to just type in a line for each of the pages that you want to redirect. So if you wanted to redirect to, you would type:

Redirect 301 [COLOR="DarkRed"]/oldpage.htm[/COLOR] [COLOR="#008080"][/COLOR]

You need to give the file path of the old URL relative to the root (so it starts with /), and the full path of the new URL including the domain.

Repeat that for each of the pages on your site, save the file and upload it to the root directory of your site, and bingo, job done.

If you have a lot of pages on your site, and the redirect will always follow a set pattern, you might find it easier to use mod_rewrite.