Google says redirect signals stay with destination URL after a year

Gary Illyes from Google posted on Twitter that you need to keep a live redirect for one year for Google search purposes. Signals from original page A to landing page B will all forward and remain true to page B even after the redirect is removed, if that redirect is active for one year.

We’ve already heard Google’s advice that keeping redirects for a year is a good practice. But this is the first time a Googer has said this is a “concrete answer” and more, that even after removing the redirect, the signals do not return to the original page but stay with the landing page.

Here is Gary’s original tweet:

He then went back and forth on Twitter with dozens of questions and posted a clarification saying, “If a signal has already been given to B, it will stay there ~ no matter what.”

I like the way Patrick Stox summed it up:

Google updated its site move help document in section six to read “Keep redirects for as long as possible, usually at least 1 year. This time frame allows Google to forward all signals to new URLs, including re-crawling and reassigning links on other sites that point to your old URLs. From a user perspective, consider keeping redirects indefinitely. However, redirects are slow for users, so try upgrading to update your own links and all high volume links from other websites to point to new URLs. “

Here are some of the back and forth as SEOs began to understand if the signals persisted even after the redirect was removed. And to be clear they do, but after the redirect is removed, new signals pointing to the original page A are not passed to the landing page of the removed redirect B. Hope that makes sense …

And technically it might take less than a year, but a year for sure:

And the countdown begins when Google notices the redirect:

Pretty cool transparency from Google on this!

Discussion forum at Twitter.

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