Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Setting Up A Custom Domain? Check Your External References!

When you setup a Custom Domain, the migration process for Blogger access to the blog is transparent. The setup wizard provides encouraging advice
We won't leave your readers behind!
http://myblog.blogspot.com will redirect to your custom domain.


When you publish your blog to a custom domain, two things happen instantaneously.
  • All dynamic links within the blog are changed, from "myblog.blogspot.com" to "mydomain.com".
  • Blogger sets up a server based "301 Moved Permanently" for your blog.
Your readers, and the search engine spiders, see the change the next time that they visit. Any automated processes that support a "301 Redirect" know to replace the old address, "myblog.blogspot.com", with the new address "mydomain.com".

All that said, you shouldn't expect for every search engine on the web to immediately acknowledge the new blog address. Just as establishing a search engine presence, updating one to a new address could take weeks.

With the initial setup out of the way, you may have a major amount of work yet to do, and a small but significant part needs to be done at your earliest convenience. Various third party elements that reference the blog by its URL may have to be updated. Some, if not updated immediately, may present a problem to your online reputation.

If your blog has a Google Sitemap, you'll have to use Google Webmaster Tools to re verify site ownership, and to setup a new sitemap. If you've added a Google Sitemap to your blog before, you sort of know what to expect. Also, the sitemap setup wizard was improved in early 2008, so you'll find the sitemap addition process somewhat simplified and more intuitive.

You can probably update (re add) one blog in 5 minutes, if you read the instructions. You do need to do this part fairly promptly (though after the transition period if you used the "Buy A Domain" wizard), as the sitemap is an important component in access by the Google spider, and secondarily affects your blog in Google searches.

With the sitemap updated, you can change all of the internal links in the blog, if you wish, and as time permits. Thanks to the "301 Moved Permanently", any internal references to the BlogSpot URL are simply replaced when any given link in the blog is followed. This dual personality effect will last for eternity.

Your friends web sites, that may have static references to yours (blogroll entries, generally), will likewise produce referrals to your blog, and to its new address. The static references can be updated at the convenience of the owners of the other web sites.

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2 comments:

kat said...

I wish you can help me..until now my blog is not showing. I bought my new domain from godaddy and i switched my blogspot to custom domain for a week now. Unfortunately, it still not working. I sent ticket to godaddy and they said it is properly working in their end..I am so frustrated right now..my old url is http://momsshoppinglists.blogspot.com... my new domain is www.mywishlists.info

hope you can give advice on this.

thank you in advance

Chuck said...

Kat,

I'll give you two alternatives.

1. Diagnose the problem.

2. Report the problem in BHF: Something Is Broken.