We know Google has told us to leave our redirects up for at least a year, but now, Gary Illyes from Google said the “concrete answer” after he dug into how Google Search handles it internally, is to leave your redirect up for “at least one year.” This will result in Google to pass any signals from the origin URL to the destination URL from the time Google found the redirect, to the time Google noticed the redirect was removed.
That means, the signals passed from the origin URL to the destination URL will always be associated with the destination URL, even after you remove the redirect. But after you do remove the redirect, the signals going forward will then be associated with the origin URL and not the destination URL.
The announcement. Here is Gary’s announcement on Twitter on this:
hands up if you asked us recently for how long you should keep redirects in place!
i have a concrete answer now: at least 1 year.
(but try keeping them indefinitely if you can for your users).
— Gary 鯨理／경리 Illyes (@methode) July 21, 2021
What about the signals passing? So Gary Illyes and a bunch of SEOs went back and forth trying to clarify what this means. I summed it up above but here is Patrick Stox, a long time SEO, summing up Gary Illyes’ clarification:
So the main thread branched a lot with a lot of questions but I think this is the main takeaway. 301 redirects really do consolidate those signals (usually in…