Canonical Version of Duplicate Websites
Writing about web page http://ppcpromotion.co.uk/en
My links back to the old I-buy-Spy Microsoft CMS system are getting more removed as the MS-Office Live SB websites are shutting down tomorrow. They offered their Office 365 alternative at a reasonable rate but did not provide porting tools and SEO still required bodging.
So I re-hosted my website in Europe where my new provider’s free domain name offer included .eu domains so I claimed ppcpromotion.eu .When selecting my main domain I also registered ppcpro.co.uk to have a shorter domain for the phone and email addresses.
Then I registered the ‘dash’ variants;
This now adds up to 5 domains that instantly gets doubled when you add the www. variants which are treated as sub-domains likewrap.warwick.ac.uk the University of Warwick, Research Archive Portal.With Microsoft I could use the three main ways to manage the DNS settings:
- Donating the Domain names to the host’s Nameservers.
- Directing the domain to the Host’s server’s IP address, using ‘A’ or Address Records.
- Pointing one hostname to another using CNAME Records or Canonical name records.
My new host only allowed new domains to be added using A records.
I could still have used CNAME or simple redirection externally from the server but since I already had .eu and .co.uk that MUST be managed this way, already 4 domains I needed to solve the duplication problem.
I halved the problem by adding canonical links in the page headers but these cannot work across domains so this can only manage the www. duplication.
These links looked like this:
link rel=”canonical” href=”http://ppcpromotion.co.uk/”/
link rel=”canonical” href=”http://ppcpromotion.co.uk/adwords-audit”/
(You will need to add the < and > characters around these lines. I removed then so these will show on this Blog.)
Actually there is hope for the .eu and .co.uk duplication from Google’s Webmaster Tools help :
“In a situation like this, you can use the rel=”canonical” link element across domains to specify the exact URL of whichever domain is preferred for indexing. While the rel=”canonical” link element is seen as a hint and not an absolute directive, we do try to follow it where possible.”
I experimented with CNAME Records but I needed to be able to finish the job off on the server so the three minor domain names were simply used 301 Permanent redirection as the cleanest, safest solution.