Cool SEO Redirection Feature in WordPress 2.3.x

By Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Wednesday, February 6, 2008

I accidentally discovered a super-cool re-direction feature embedded in WordPress 2.3.x. Any blog may have multiple url pointing to the same blog. For example may also be accessed as The proper practice, keeping SEO in mind, is to redirect all such URL to the canonical URL of the site. Now there is a simple way to achieve this.

Previously you had to modify .htaccess or httpd.conf to accomplish it. With version 2.3.1 and above, WordPress itself redirects (permanent redirect) all non-canonical URL to the single canonical URL for the site.

The upside is that you don’t need to mess around with .htaccess or httpd.conf. A slight mistake in either of them can bring down your site or mess it up completely.

The downside is that WordPress uses a PHP based approach which is potentially slower than .htaccess or httpd.conf approaches. Nevertheless it should be a boon for novice bloggers.

February 7, 2008: 12:15 am

If you’re interested, Mark Jaquith has a full writeup on the Canonical URL feature here.

February 6, 2008: 12:41 pm

Yes, canonical URLs are “built-in” to WordPress 2.3+, however, as you mention, the redirection is happening at the PHP level, which is slower and requires more server resources than if it were happening directly through Apache. This built-in PHP redirection is perhaps good for users of WordPress 2.3 who don’t have access to httpd.conf/htaccess, but for users of older versions of WordPress, or for those of us who prefer to handle URL redirection via Apache, there is a much better solution for permalink canonicalization.

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