How to Use the Yahoo! Store Page Redirect Manager

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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

How to Use the Yahoo! Store Page Redirect ManagerPage Redirect Manager is a relatively new feature which is designed to assist Yahoo! Store owners with their search engine optimization (SEO) and site management efforts through 301 redirecting. Using this feature, Yahoo! Store owners can now easily create, edit, and delete page-level 301 redirects for their websites.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store (301) Page Redirect Manager

Page Redirect Manager is a relatively new feature (launched in September, 2011) which is designed to assist Yahoo! Store owners with their search engine optimization (SEO) and site management efforts through 301 redirecting. Using this feature, Yahoo! Store owners can now easily create, edit, and delete page-level 301 redirects for their websites. In addition, one does not need access to hosting nor have programming knowledge to use this tool. I cannot begin to explain how happy this update has made me.

A number of logical reasons exist for why a Yahoo! Store owner would wish to permanently redirect one page to another. However, up until this release, store owners were not able to do so. In fact, not being able to implement a 301 redirect was, in my opinion, one of the biggest shortcomings of the entire Yahoo! Store platform. As an Internet marketing professional who happens to specialize in Yahoo! Store development, I'm sure you can imagine just how frustrating this was.

The Page Redirect Manager is available for all Yahoo! Merchant Solutions and Yahoo! Store accounts. Users can create specific rules for handling 301 redirects either through the redirect table - a friendly, easy-to-use interface - or by uploading a CSV file containing their redirect rules. Page Redirect Manager can be used to create a maximum of 50,000 redirect rules, which should be sufficient for most Yahoo! Store owners.

Before I jump in and begin my tutorial on how to use the Page Redirect Manager tool, I think it might be best if I first outline some of the basics.

What is a 301 Redirect?

A redirect is exactly as it sounds... directing something to a new or different place than where it was originally intended. In this case, I am referring to an Internet user. There are many reasons as to why a website would choose to redirect its visitors, but the most common reason is because a page has either moved or been removed.

A 301 redirect is considered a "permanent redirect". On the surface, a 301 redirect will seamlessly move website visitors from an original location (old page) to a newly specified location (new page). However, below the surface, a 301 redirect informs search engines and other server crawlers that a specific page will no longer be available, and to begin referencing the new URL instead of the old.

Why is Using 301 Redirects Important?

A 301 redirect is extremely important to website owners. A 301 redirect will help to transfer site visitors from point A to point B with little effort and error. In addition, as I alluded to above, a 301 redirect signals to search engines that a switch is being made. Search engines will take this as a queue to remove the old page from their index and direct users to the new URL.

Furthermore, and more to the bigger picture, search engines will also pass along any and all search engine value that the old page has accumulated on to the new page. This includes age merits, value from inbound links, and search engine rankings. Therefore, even though a page might be brand new, through 301 redirecting it can have all the benefits of an already established page.

When to use a 301 Redirect

Once again, a 301 redirect should only be used when the original page location will never be available again. We're talking a permanent redirect from one page to another. While I am sure there are numerous reasons for why a Yahoo! Store owner would wish to use a 301 redirect, the 3 most common examples seem to be:

Example 1: A store owner wishes to optimize their page URLs for better search engine placement thereby recreating an established page so that its URL now includes keywords. Assuming the old URL is already indexed by search engines and ranks well, a 301 redirect will ensure that all previous page value is passed along to the new URL.

Example 2: A store is selling a product that has now been discontinued. If this particular product page has accumulated search engine value and currently ranks well, store owners might opt to transfer this value to a similar product, rather than simply deleting it.

Example 3: An online merchant wishes to transfer their website from their current content management system (CMS) onto the Yahoo! Store platform. If their current pages receive significant traffic and already rank well within search engines, a 301 redirect would help to retain its overall value when moving the website over.

The Yahoo! Store Page Redirect Manager can be used to create 301 redirects to assist with each of these efforts, and others.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store Page Redirect Manager

Creating 301 redirects with the Yahoo! Store Page Redirect Manager is easy. Follow these 6 steps to create a single redirect, one at a time.

Step 1: Navigate to Page Redirect Manager

After logging into your store control panel, locate and click "Page Redirect Manager". This link is located within the "Site Settings" column.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store (301) Page Redirect Manager

Step 2: Create a New Redirect

Locate and click "Create New Redirect". The button is located above the redirect table, on the left side of the screen. When clicked, a new row will open at the top of the redirect table, where users can create your page redirect.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store (301) Page Redirect Manager

Step 3: Enter "Old Page URL"

Locate the "Old Page URL" field within the redirect table. Enter the URL of the page you wish to redirect.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store (301) Page Redirect Manager

Step 4: Enter "New Page URL"

Locate the "New Page URL" field within the redirect table. Enter the URL of the page you wish to redirect to.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store (301) Page Redirect Manager

Step 5: Save Redirect

Locate and click "save". The button is located on the right side of the New Page URL field. Once saved, the newly created page redirect will appear in the redirect table.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store (301) Page Redirect Manager

Step 6: Publish Redirects

Locate and click "Publish". The button is located above the redirect table, on the right side of the screen. Follow through by clicking the "Yes" button when a confirmation box appears.

How to Use the Yahoo! Store (301) Page Redirect Manager

Additional Things to Know

Yahoo! has created an excellent FAQ guide to address commonly asked questions regarding the Page Redirect Manager. In addition, I took the liberty of including the following 4 troubleshooting tips to which I found to be quite helpful in my 301 redirect efforts.

Redirects CAN Be Uploaded in Bulk

In the event users wish to redirect a large number of URLs at one time, a CSV template can be downloaded, edited, and uploaded to create a maximum of 50,000 redirects.

Redirects MUST Be Published

It is important to note that page redirects must be published (Step 6) before they take effect. Simply creating a redirect will not make it live.

Redirects MUST Be Absolute URLs

It is important to note that when entering values for the Old Page URL and New Page URL that they are absolute URLs. Relative URLs (ex: index.html) will not work.

Old Page URLs MUST Already Be Deleted

It is important to note that Old Page URLs must first be deleted prior to setting up a redirect. Redirects will not work while Old Page URLs still exist on the site.

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12 Comments:

  1. Can you provide a tutorial on how to use the bulk feature?
    By Anonymous Anonymous on March 13, 2012
  2. Good idea! I made a note to either add a section to this post covering bulk uploading, or to give it its own post.

    However, the process is very easy. Simply click the "Download" button on the right, place old URLs in column "A" and new URLs in column "B", save, and click the "Upload" button.

    I hope this helps. Thanks!
    By Blogger Karl Ribas on March 14, 2012
  3. I wasn't even aware that this existed. Thanks.
    By Anonymous Cera on March 14, 2012
  4. Hi Cera! It's still somewhat new (as of September, 2011). Unless you knew it was there, I imagine you, as most, just overlooked it. I'm glad I could help!

    Thanks for commenting!
    By Blogger Karl Ribas on March 14, 2012
  5. Great post. Do you write about yahoo stores a lot?
    By Anonymous David - Peanut Merchant on March 15, 2012
  6. Hi David. Thanks for your comment.

    I more or less try and stick to posting about Internet marketing. With that, however, there will be quite a bit of crossover from time to time. This particular post is one of those instances.

    If you're looking for additional Yahoo! Store coverage, give All Web Promotion's blog a read. They tend to focus on design and marketing strategies specifically from a Yahoo! Store stand-point.
    By Blogger Karl Ribas on March 15, 2012
  7. Thanks Karl. I'll take a look.
    By Anonymous David on March 16, 2012
  8. Great post.
    By Anonymous Dan Rombus on April 25, 2012
  9. Thanks Dan! Glad you liked it.
    By Blogger Karl Ribas on April 25, 2012
  10. Hey Karl!! Great post about 301 redirect. It gives a good knowledge about 301 redirect.Thanks for this informative post.
    By Anonymous Aditi Datta on May 07, 2012
  11. I just discovered this page and am so excited! Recently had a new custom site designed and went "live" a month ago moving our domain name of ten years from the Yahoo Store platform to a new dns server. It has been "hell"! I am not an IT person. However, none of the third party (Yahoo Store certified!) service providers I use (and pay monthly) warned me of the inherent issues associated with a re-designed site launch.

    Question: Now that I've left the Yahoo Store platform, how do I access the old urls in order to download them into the .csv spreadsheet for matching with the new urls? I see each of the section items and product items in content but can't connect with the original page.

    Thanks for your assistance!
    By Anonymous Gil Mitchell on August 01, 2013
  12. Hi Gil,

    It appears that you can still get your URLS from Google's Cache, but I'm sure as to how much longer this will be available. YOu can view them here:

    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:_ZK4K_BKPE4J:www.thelingeriestoreusa.com/sitemap.xml+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

    Thanks!
    By Blogger Karl Ribas on August 02, 2013

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