How fussy is Google?

20 replies [Last post]
Madeleine's picture
Offline
Joined:
09/29/2011

On my old site I have page URLs something like this 'MyTownEvents'. On the new site I cannot use caps in the URLs so it's 'mytownevents'. Is that going to send Google screaming off a cliff, taking my website with it?

This is nerve-wracking! I did this once before and some of my pages that had great traffic disappeared. Newbie mistake. But, now I know better and I'm nervous!

__________________

Everyday, for good or ill, we intersect with some else's story and become a part of it.

 

Offline
Joined:
10/07/2008

Love the title of this thread.

How fussy? They made me fussy today. 

__________________

Gluten free is never free. - Joey Bloggs

 

Offline
Joined:
05/22/2008

yeah I guess that was what I was first "trying to say" badly.  So how are  you made fussy today?

Offline
Joined:
10/07/2008

EmptyNest wrote:

yeah I guess that was what I was first "trying to say" badly.  So how are  you made fussy today?

The usual google on a major holiday, they could have put a bunny there, but what they did put outraged and offended millions. Including me. But we can't discuss that here, so just go to google.

If they had put NOTHING there I would not have minded.

But they tend to do this on all major American holidays, patriotic and religious. No matter what anyone says TODAY is still Easter and children everywhere are hunting for Easter eggs and having a family supper together. Maybe even a little chocolate.  Smiling

 

Offline
Joined:
08/04/2008

Joey Bloggs wrote:

EmptyNest wrote:

yeah I guess that was what I was first "trying to say" badly.  So how are  you made fussy today?

The usual google on a major holiday, they could have put a bunny there, but what they did put outraged and offended millions. Including me. But we can't discuss that here, so just go to google.

If they had put NOTHING there I would not have minded.

But they tend to do this on all major American holidays, patriotic and religious. No matter what anyone says TODAY is still Easter and children everywhere are hunting for Easter eggs and having a family supper together. Maybe even a little chocolate.  Smiling

 

I was fussed by this, too. I hear ya, LOUD and CLEAR

Offline
Joined:
05/22/2008

HUH???

See I never go to Google. I just type in my search in the address bar. 

Arks's picture
Offline
Joined:
05/22/2010

Of topic of page traffic transfer, but I've noticed over the years that with home pages case doesn't matter (in typing in a web address), but with with other pages case does matter.

For instance, you can advertise your web address as MyGuestHouse.com on your business card (the caps make it easier for people to read and remember) and whether they enter MyGuestHouse.com or myguesthouse.com in their browser, they'll make it to your site.

But if you have another page, named MyGuestHouse.com/OurBreakfasts.html, they can't get there by typing myguesthouse.com/ourbreakfasts.html because case matters for pages beyond the home page.

I used to blame Bill Gates for stuff like this, but he's turned into such a nice guy, I don't have anybody to blame anymore.

__________________

All saints can do miracles, but few of them can keep hotel. ~ Mark Twain

 

swirt's picture
Offline
Joined:
05/17/2008

The domain name is not case sensitive, but subsequent pages within the site may be.  Example: Apache ( a common web server) is case sensitive out of the box.  So a request for mydomain.com/pageone  serves up a different page than mydomain.com/PageOne   The server treats it as a separate page, so Google treats it as a separate page.  So it is not so much a question of, "is Google case sensitive?", but it is more a question of "is your web server case sensitive?".

A web server can be made to be either case tolerant meaning the two requests for the page above would return the same page but keep the caps, or it can be made case insensitive , which means it will automatically force/re-write the page request to be lower case.  If your server is case insensitive, when you type in request with some caps in place, you will actually see the caps become lower case.

As Scott mentioned above, a 301 redirect can solve this fairly easily (better with a 301 redirect with mod-rewrite),However that is still a single page fix.   It is better to make the web server case insensitive if you can.  That is what keeps your PR from being split if someone links to you with caps in the address.

Madeleine's picture
Offline
Joined:
09/29/2011

So, the way I would know that is to try to view someone else's site that is on the same server (webhost) to see what I get if I put in caps into a URL I know is lower case? No, I wouldn't know that would I? I have to contact the webhost to ask.

swirt's picture
Offline
Joined:
05/17/2008

Madeleine wrote:

So, the way I would know that is to try to view someone else's site that is on the same server (webhost) to see what I get if I put in caps into a URL I know is lower case? No, I wouldn't know that would I? I have to contact the webhost to ask.

No, the way you would know is to check it on your server.  Go to a page that you know is working, then swap in a cap somewhere in the path.

 

If it gives you an page not found (404 error) then you know the current configuration is case sensitive. (worst)

If it delivers the same page, but the cap remains in the path, then you know it is case insensitve. (better)

If it delivers the same page and cap converts to a lower case, then you know it is case insensitive with a url re-write in place. (Best)

Madeleine's picture
Offline
Joined:
09/29/2011

Never mind...I misunderstood.

OK, tried it again. Got door number 2. Page found, caps left in place.

So, do I do the redirect to keep the Google love?

OnTheShore's picture
Offline
Joined:
08/28/2011

Wouldn't the case sensitivity depend on the host computer's file system rather than the server software?

__________________

"where even time relaxes...."

 

swirt's picture
Offline
Joined:
05/17/2008

Harborfields wrote:

Wouldn't the case sensitivity depend on the host computer's file system rather than the server software?

This is kind of a moot point.  A linux based machine has a case sensitive file system.  No real way around that.  But what controls how it behaves when it serves files to the web is the server software and its configuration.  

Offline
Joined:
02/09/2010

It is decidedly NOT OK. 

Your page (MyTownEvents) has page rank (status) with Google. The new page (mytownevents) has none. There is a correct way to transfer the status from the old to the new, but it is a little bit painful. Ideally you want to keep the full URL the same. If you can't do that, then you should redirect traffic from the old page to the new.

Google has guidelines for this. In essence, you need to have the old page return a signal and code to the browser, sending it to the new page. This is known as a 301 redirect, as 301 is the code that is sent, saying, in essence, "this has moved permanently."

Detailed instructions from Google are here: http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=93633

At the end, it says you'll need access to your web server's .htaccess file. If you are using WordPress, there is also a plugin that will handle it instead.

Offline
Joined:
05/22/2008

Thanks for the correction laugh Is this the plug in  you were referring to?

http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/redirection/

Offline
Joined:
02/09/2010

The one I currently use is called Safe Redirect Manager, which seems to do the job quite well.

Madeleine's picture
Offline
Joined:
09/29/2011

Thanks! I thought it might be a problem.

For how long do I have to redirect traffic?

Offline
Joined:
05/22/2008

I think redirects are permanent. If you look in your control panel. There is an icon I believe to set up redirects if you want to do it that way. You will then have to set up redirects for all your pages when you get the new WP site live because all file names are different now.

Madeleine's picture
Offline
Joined:
09/29/2011

I just went in and changed as many as I could to the old names. The old ones using caps are the problem children. But, there are tutorials on what to do if not HOW to do it. So far only 8 pages need help. The others are mostly single words and I didn't start off with those in caps.

Of course, now I have to figure out what links I broke...

All in a day's work... did I say I'd be done in April? Maybe late April...

Offline
Joined:
05/22/2008

It shouldn't make a difference whether it is caps or lowercase. It is seen as the same url I believe. Oh I see what you mean now...spacing in between. I will look at your site and see if i can find a way.

Joey Camb's picture
Offline
Joined:
04/02/2010

it is supposed to be ok - but remember now google is supposed to be putting more emphasis onto content

__________________

Don't mess with me today or I will kill you!!!!

 

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.