AskPat 308 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 308 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today. As always, I'm here to help you by answering your online business questions, five days a week.
Sweet. Let's get to today's question from Jake. Here we go.
Jake Carlson: Hi Pat. Jake Carlson here from the Family Before Fortune Podcast. I just wanted to say you are awesome. You know, I really appreciate how responsive that you are and if you reach out on Twitter you respond back and this week I was emailing back and forth with Jessica, your assistant. She is just so professional and so polite, and she recommended that I give you a call and leave this as an AskPat question for you. The question that I have is, what is the difference between using 301 redirect and using Pretty Link Lite? I know that you really like Pretty Link Lite, and I've been using, for the past year, 301 Redirect, and I just wondered if there was a reason that you would recommend one over the other, or if you feel they do different things. Thanks Pat. Again you're awesome. Love what you're doing. Keep up the good work.
Pat Flynn: Hey Jake, what's up? Thank you so much for the question today. Thank you for your awesome intro. You are awesome. Thank you for the kind words, seriously, to hear. . . this is why I do what I do and this is why I connect with amazing people like Jessica because they just help out the brand so much and so, Jessica, if you're listening to this in the future, I know Mindy may pass this along because Mindy and Jessica work in the same co-working space in Minnesota. Thank you. You guys are awesome. Just to hear this from Jake is amazing. Thank you, Jake, for sharing it.
Now let's get to your question. I'm going to assume something here because it sounds like you are comparing two WordPress plugins. If not, I'll try to answer if you're not, but there is a WordPress plugin out there for those of you listening. It's one of my favorites. It's called Pretty Link, and there's a light version of it, Pretty Link Lite. It allows you to do pretty links, which means take a really long massive links, maybe it's an affiliate link, you know, that you get through Amazon or somebody else's website from a product you're selling.
It's like, “Nameaproduct.com/thisandthat/?=affiliatenumber39125.” And that's a really hard URL to just say, let alone remember, if you were going to share it with someone. But, if you put that into Pretty Link you can have that become whatever you'd like, so it would yourURL.com/product or yourURL.com/resource. Whatever it is. That's how I've been able to do, for example, SmartPassiveIncome.com/Bluehost. That's how I've been able to do SmartPassiveIncome.com/Episode150 for episode 150 of the Smart Passive Income podcast. Those are all Pretty Links. What that does, is it just redirects. Which means when someone calls up that Pretty Link, Pretty Link knows to then redirect people to the page that you associated with that Pretty Link. It's really handy.
Now it sounded, Jake, like you were talking about a separate plugin called 301 Redirect. I'm assuming that you meant Simple 301 Redirect, which is another WordPress plugin that I've seen used before that makes it really simple to do this as well, but it's very, very sort of, hey, you can put in the link that you want it to be off of your main URL and then you just put in the URL that you want people to get redirected to and it just achieves the same thing, so that's called Simple 301 Redirect.
Now what is a 301 Redirect? What does this number mean? This is website code for, you know how like a 404 is an error, well a 301 redirect is a permanent redirect, which literally passes between 90 percent and 99 percent of the link juice or ranking power to the redirected page. I'm very familiar with 301 Permanent Redirect because when I got a cease and desist letter from the United States Green Building Council for having a trademark in my domain name, for my very first business, I ended up changing the domain name and using a 301 redirect to pass as much of that link juice to my new domain name as possible. In the lead, the lead part was the trademark that they didn't want me using, which was valid, but again, I had just started out, didn't know what I was doing. It worked out because the 301 redirect when I switched over to Green Exam Academy was up long enough for Google to understand, “Hey, this is going to be the new location of this website and make sure to pass all that link juice to this new location.” That's what the 301 redirect does.
Now both Pretty Link and Simple 301 Redirects does the 301 redirect, so a permanent sort of change. If you're a user of Pretty Link and you always wondered whether you use the 301 permanent redirect option, if you are not adding a “no follow” attribute, meaning you want that final page, you want that link juice to go all the way to that redirect page that you're using, then you want to use a 301 permanent. For example, something that I do, I use 301 permanent for my show notes, when I mention them on the podcast, I say, “Use the URL smartpassiveincome.com/session150.” That's never going to change, so I want it to be permanent, but I also want that link juice to flow if people end up linking through that link back to my website. I want that to flow to the original URL, which is the URL of the show. I don't know what the actual URL of the show is and again, that's another benefit of using either one of those plugins. I don't even need to know what the actual URL is, I just need to know SmartPassiveIncome.com/Session150. Even AskPat.com/Bluehost, those things work just fine, and that’s 301 Permanent Redirects.
However, I will say, Pretty Links has the options of putting a 307 redirect. Whoa, another number. What is 307? Well 307 is a temporary redirect. It tells search engines that this redirect may change in the future so don't pass any link juice. You should only use a 307 if you think the target URL may change at some point, at which case if you were linking to affiliate products, it does, so actually the Bluehost link is not permanent, it's temporary. Any affiliate links I have is temporary because I don't want to pass on any of my own link juice to them. I want it all to be with my side as much as possible and especially for affiliates, if I don't want it to go there. Now if it's an article that somebody else's has, then a 301 is fine. I don't think it's going to change, but again, on Pretty Links that use a 307 type redirect, you should enable the “no follow” attribute to prevent search engines from indexing your links and hurting your ranking.
It can actually hurt your rankings if you don't do this right. Not in a significant manner and I wouldn't stress over this, but again, just to recap, to do your own site a 301 permanent redirect is the best thing to do. If you are doing another person's site, then you have to make a decision if it's an affiliate product or a URL that you think may change at some point, then you'll want to do a 307 temporary redirect. Again, that's something that Simple 301 Redirects can not do. They only have the 301 permanent option. Another thing I like about Pretty Links Lite is that they keep track of how many clicks each of those links has and you can even go in there and you can do this in 301 as well, you can go back and change a link in the future, which is important to do. I've done that many times for a lot of my links that I have stored in Pretty Links. Again, that main thing is that it just keeps track of those links and it makes it really nice and easy to categorize them as well.
There's a lot of cool things you can do with Pretty Links Lite and that's why I recommend that over Simple 301 Redirects. Hopefully that answers your question, Jake. I really appreciate this. I think we don't have a lot of. . . we don't have too many technical questions on Ask Pat because a lot of people know this is an audio show, but this was a great one. I was able to hopefully answer the question for you, for everybody else out there, so again just to recap. 301 is a permanent redirect. That's if you want the link juice to pass all the way through, and again based off of what Moz.com says about 90-99 percent of that link juice does pass through one of these redirects. And then a 307 is a temporary, where you don't want the link juice to pass through. Make sure to use the “no follow” attribute for those 307 redirects so that the search engines don't index those pages, or those links, and they end up hurting your rankings.
Hopefully this answers your question Jake. An AskPat t-shirt is headed your way for having your question featured here on the show. Thank you so much. For those of you listening, if you have a question featured here on the show, excuse me, if you have a question you'd like potentially featured here on the show, talking a little too fast here, make sure to go to AskPat.com. You can ask right there on that page.
Thank you so much. We have a great quote today from Jay Baer, who's going to be at Social Media Marketing World, who is probably near me right now because at the time of this recording when it goes live, or, yeah, when it goes live, I will be at Social Media Marketing World, so that will be cool. I should be speaking on stage today, the same day this episode goes out, on Thursday, March 26, about MasterMind groups. It's going to be awesome. Today's quote is from Jay Baer, and he says, “Content is fire. Social media is gasoline.” Boom. The boom is just me, but boom for that particular quote because that's awesome. “Content is fire. Social media is gasoline.” Cheers, take care, and I'll see you tomorrow on the next episode of AskPat. Thanks guys.