MCGWD Blog


Posted on January 4th, 2008

“301” Redirects for SEO

Search engines will often regard www.example.com and example.com as two different websites. Because of this, websites usually experience the effects of link fragmentation (inbound links point to both www.example.com and others to example.com). For example, if www.example.com has 5,000 inbound links and example.com has 2,500 inbound links you could potentially combine them so you have all 7,500 links pointing to www.example.com.

To do this you can setup a permanent “301” redirect by creating a .htaccess file with the below code. This will ensure that all requests coming in to example.com will get redirected to www.example.com.

Options +FollowSymlinks
RewriteEngine on
rewritecond %{http_host} ^example.com [nc]
rewriterule ^(.*)$ http://www.example.com/$1 [r=301,nc]

Notes:

  • The .htaccess file needs to be placed in the root directory of your old website (i.e the same directory where your index file is placed)
  • REPLACE example.com and www.example.com with your actual domain name in the code above
  • This .htaccess redirection method only works on servers using the Apache Mod-Rewrite module

This “301” redirect method is also a great way to save money on SSL certificates. When the site always points to www.example.com you only need to buy a single SSL certificate.


Posted on November 19th, 2007

IE Changes EPS to PS Files when Downloading

EPS file type.

If you plan to link directly to an .EPS or .AI file for downloading (e.g. logos, vector art, etc.) on a website, you should note that Internet Explorer doesn’t correctly handle these postscript files. If you attempt to download an .eps file with IE it will save it as a .ps file and it will save an .ai file as a .pdf. This is not a problem in Firefox or Opera.

The simple solution is to zip these types of files so IE doesn’t change the file extension, and your visitors can download them without problems.


Posted on November 10th, 2007

PayPal Buttons; Hide Email Addresses from Spam Bots

PayPal

Lately I’ve been creating a lot of PayPal “Buy Now” and “Add to Cart” buttons for a few of my customer’s websites. The problem with creating these buttons is that they require an email address to be added to the HTML code, which in turn gets easily harvested by spam-bots.

A simple alternative to using an email address is to use a “referral code” instead. To get the referral code login to PayPal and click on “Referrals” located near the footer of the page. On that page you will find a link like: https://www.paypal.com/us/mrb/pal=VXDE78NC4F3K2. Copy the “VXDE78NC4F3K2” part of the code and replace the hidden input value of “business” with it in your button code.

Original Code:

Revised Code:

You may ask why I wouldn’t just use PayPal’s encrypted payment buttons. Well, By creating non-encrypted buttons you can easily edit them (e.g. change Price, Item Name, etc.), create new ones fast and dynamically input values via PHP.


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