Friday, 18 July 2014

How to Prevent Country Specific Blogger Blog URL Redirection

Preventing the Country specific Blogger Blogspot Blogs URL redirection for SEO optimization with Canonical URLs and Scripts

How to Prevent Country Specific Blogger Blog URL Redirection via 2 ways
Preventing the SEO and Social Activity Leak on Blogger
If you are one of those bloggers who are wondering why your traffic is so low despite so much content on your blogspot blogs than you might be missing out due to the country specific blogger url redirection where in the .com domain (top level domain [TLD]) part of your blogspot url gets changed to a country specific domain namespace based on the visitor's country, like for example a visitor from Netherlands will see your blogspot site with url will see it as due to .nl redirection to Netherlands specific domain name redirection. Now some of you  might ask how does it affect your blog in terms of traffic, visibility and your SEO. Well if you know of content duplication that is same content being served on various domains then you must know that this redirection thingy is one of them, when your content is served under various country specific domain name endings, Search engines like Google or Bing consider it as duplicated content and set priority to any one of the domains so when a country specific url gets traffic from Google the other Country specific urls are ignored and the same thing happens in various parts of the world depending upon the user's nativity as their social activity on that particular country specific url makes them rank higher thereby distributing your domain juice among country specific domain urls instead of top level domain .com and hurts your SEO as every time search engines consider different country specific redirections as different sites, apart from that various third party applications and widgets like social sharing, social count, commenting (Facebook, disqus, livefyre,etc)  takes a toll as they show different counts and comments for various redirected urls and some don't even work if registered under a specific domain. Now to fix this there are two ways one is usage of canonical url and other is re-redirection using scripts, so let's get started with preventing your Blogger blogs from country specific url redirections.

Instructions to Follow:

  1. Preventing SEO Impact in Search Engines with Canonical URL's

    Well if you are wondering what these canonical urls are then it's nothing but a link specification in XML that states search engines and crawlers to consider only the top level domain that .com as the main site or source despite all the country specific redirections taking place on the site. To enable this feature on your site go to your Blogger Template → click Edit HTML → Now look for the <head> tag or use CTRL+F to find it and add the below code just below the <head> tag.
    <link expr:href="data:blog.canonicalUrl" rel="canonical"/>
    The above code automatically adds the canonical attribute to all the redirected links telling the Search engines to only consider the main source which is your main .com blogspot site. In case you haven't updated your blogger template and using one of those old blogger templates then it would require a different script to specify the canonical property. Just use the below code after the <head> tag to specify the attribute:
     <link href="<$BlogItemPermalinkURL$>" rel="canonical"/>
    The above code might not help you with serving different social counts and comments problem on the redirected domains but will surely help increase your search engine ranking and visibility in Search Engines. This method can be ignored for those have for those who have moved their blogger blogs to their own custom domains as all the country specific url redirections are now redirected to your custom domain.
  2. Preventing Blogger Redirections to Country Specific Domains with Re-redirection Script

    Well if you are worried about distributed Social Media activity on your Blogspot blog mainly consisting of comments and social share counts then this method will be just perfect for you besides that having all your social media activity of your visitors on your Top level domain is a good signal for improving SEO on your site. To stop this country specific redirection we will use a re-redirection script that redirects country specific url back to the original source avoiding a country specific url redirection. To avoid the redirects go to your Blogger Template → Click Edit HTML → Add the below code after <head> tag and save your template.
    <script type="text/javascript">
          var blog = document.location.hostname.split(".");
          if (blog[blog.length - 1] != "com") {
            var ncr = "http://" + blog[0] + "";
            window.location.replace(ncr + document.location.pathname);    
    After implementing the script go to your blogspot site and enjoy as now it serves you only the top level domain that is your .com blogspot site with all your social media activity kept intact at one place for better SEO signals. Avoid use of the script in case you have already moved your blogspot site to your own custom domain as now everything redirects to your custom domain.

It's recommended to use both Canonical attribution and the re-redirection chain script together on your blogspot site to keep both search engine rankings and Social media activity intact on your site. Just add both the scripts one after the another and enjoy your .com blogspot site free from any country specific redirection. However due to re-redirection some load time might be lost. The Redirection move by Blogger was keeping web censorship in mind so that if your site is blocked in a particular country then they can still access it by going to other specific domain endings of the same blogspot site which wouldn't be possible if your blog only had a .com ending. A cool way of keeping your visitors happy and accessible!