Improve Page Rank from Parked Domains

One of the biggest things I see these days is customers buying ten or so domain names and parking them on top of their primary domain name.

Lets say its, people go out and buy,,,,,, etc etc. They buy all these domains I assume because they’re hoping that someone will accidently type one in? Or they want to “secure” or “protect” their brand. Most of the time I think they’re doing the exact reverse.

Imagine is started expanding their domains to include,,,,, etc etc etc etc! They’re breaking away from their main stream brand. They’re splitting their marketing budget from one primary domain, central and focal domain name to several others. Why? For what possible reason would this help ebay? No, ebay is and that’s it!

If you’re a small business and you’re doing this, you’re wasting money. Worst yet if you’ve been doing this for years now, if you stop you’re going to lose potential traffic. That means you’re going to have to continually spent money to maintain it. Your brand image could be split and you can confuse visitors by having the same content on separate domains. It could lead your customers to believe this is normal, and they could walk into phishing websites and be scammed? It’s a dangerous precedent!

So while the idea isn’t really… a good one anymore. It use to be, 10 years ago! There is another problem yet to be mention…

Search Engine Optimisation / Ranking

This problem causes problems with your page rank or PR. Your content can be duplicated on multiple domains, because it’s a copy, Google might actually penalise you by giving you a lower PR! It thinks you’ve copied content of that other guy.. when it’s really you!

You can also sometimes increase your PR by consolidating traffic on your primary domain name. All your visitors are linking to and and and for each link you’ll gain PR a little. But if you had all the links going to the same domain your PR for that one domain will be higher. They’re already linking to you, they’re linking to the same content, they’re just linking to a separate domain which Google could mistake as you stealing content from.


Now this isn’t a full fix. You still shouldn’t be doing what you’re doing, but it will help. If you have six domain names parked on top of your primary, you can redirect them with a 301 redirect to your primary domain. A 301 redirect is a permanent redirect. It is an status code given by the web server that tells the browser or search engine that the page content as moved. Google sees a 301 redirect and will follow it! Because it is a permanent redirect, it will remove your existing indexing for the old domains, apply the owed PR to the primary domain you’re redirecting to, and reindex! Consolidating your PR.

I for example have a business website that in a .com. Five years ago a was very expensive and I wasn’t going to waste the money on it. They’re now more affordable and I want to tell my customers that my business is Australian when they go to my website – I want a!! But I have an existing website at .com. I want to move everything from my .com to my – I’m going to use a 301 permanent redirect.

The method I would do this is mod_rewrite thrown it into my .htaccess file. Your Apache webserver needs mod_rewrite included. Here’s some sample code:

ReWriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^$
RewriteRule ^(.*)$$1 [R=301,L]

What does this mean!? What does this do!!?

Right, line by line for you…

ReWriteEngine On

All this line does is turn on URL rewriting. That’s all!

RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^$

This is a condition, it will rewrite based on this condition and any others I specify. HTTP_HOST is basically the domain name part of the URL. If you want to see an example, make a PHP file and add something like <?php echo $_SERVER[HTTP_HOST]; ?> – You’ll see the output. That’s what you’re including.

The logic being:

If HTTP_HOST (the domain name) is NOT (!) from the start (^) to the finish ($) ….. do the rewrite rule.

Leave out the ^ and $ if you can’t get them working. You’ll get an internal server error if you make a mistake.

RewriteRule ^(.*)$$1 [R=301,L]

This is it, this is what does the redirect. It is effectively saying replace xx, with yy. More explained logic:

Based on the above conditions, if any…
Rewrite ^(.*)$ (means everything) to and append $1 (the remainder of the URI to the end) using a 301 redirect and this is the Last (L meaning it won’t pay any attention to following rules) rule.

Give it a go. Us sysadmins shake our heads when we see this, and we typically patch it with this.

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