The 301 Blueprint: Why, When, and How

Hey guys, Yashar here from Drip Apps. In the post, we're going to be talking about 301 redirects, and going over the questions that people have and giving a general overview of what they are. To put it in words, a 301 redirect is when an old domain, either an expired domain or one of your own old domains, is forwarded to a new domain, generally a money site that you are trying to rank.


This is one of the main questions I get asked about 301s. Why? Well, if you have an old site with links from authority sites, why not forward the link juice to a new one? Generally, 301s are using expired domains with great backlinks and forwarding them to a new domain. This passes the link juice and huge ranking boosts are seen. From personal experience, you will have huge jumps and falls in the first 4-6 days, after which they will stabilize and give you a better idea of what your final rankings will be.

In short... you are forwarding links, social signals, and authority from an old domain (expired or your own) to a new money site. Here are some results from one SEO domain from Drip Way (38 credits worth) forwarded to a site moving from 6 --> 3 for a keyword with 412,000 searches per month.


301s sound great. But, you're not always going to be able to do them. We are going to be talking about when you are able to do a 301, and when you should hold back from doing one. If you don't fall in under the when not to 301 section, you should be good to go.

When Not to 301

There are a few times when 301ing is not ideal, and will not be as effective, or may even cause a drop in rankings. We are going to be going over these times and giving a brief description on why.

Recently Recovered Sites (Penalty)

Sites that have been hit by penalties and have recovered are not the best subjects for 301s. We personally find that when you have a site get hit by a penalty, whatever link you build has no effect until days or weeks later than it normally would have. We generally don't like to jump to conclusions, but it's safe to say that a 301 on a site that has recently been recovered from a penalty isn't the best idea. This raises flags and from our experience, one of the three times the site has fallen to the point past (re)repair.

New Sites w/ No Links

New sites with no links? This is categorized as sites under a month old with no links. This doesn't mean that if your site is 32 days and has no links you can go ahead and throw 50 301s to it. No. This means that your site needs to be aged and have some authority, preferably with some links. I like to aim for 50 links, 5-8 PBN links, the rest blog comments (manual), relevant forum links, and SAPE (homepage OBL < 5), although keep it low on the SAPE since they don't work as well for new sites, but pave the road for 301s.

Authority Sites

Controversial, but 301s are not to be used on authority sites. Sites that you've been building for years and have thousands of pages of content on. When a 301 is sent on an inner page or even the homepage, little movement is seen compared to that of simple 3-4 page sniper sites. This may be because the site has existing authority and adding this won't shift the overall authority as much, compared to a sniper site that have little authority and target less keywords, and receive more "power per keyword". They also have little authority to start of with, so a 301 is beneficial and boosts the overall authority.

If you have a site that is not mentioned above, then you should be ready to 301 and claim the rankings you deserve!


So, now you know when to 301 and what it is, but how exactly do you do it? Finding the expired domain is the hardest part, but using Drip Way SEO domains you should be able to find something relevant to what you want out of our 50,000 TF10+ spam-free SEO domains. Shameless plug? One could say so.

Drip Way is closed at the moment, but it will be opening again soon-- just keep an eye out :) Yes, there are other ways to find expired domains, but that's a completely different blog post.

There are two ways to 301. The first one being a registrar 301, and the second one being a hosting 301. The registrar 301, as the name suggests, is when we go from the registrar straight to the 301 without hosting.

This can be done in NameCheap, by clicking on the domain and clicking "URL Forwarding".

And fill in the fields as you see here, replacing Google.com with the site you want to 301 to (money site, in this case, Google.com being my money site).

And you're done! Now, we're going to be discussing the hosting method, using cPanel. After logging into your cPanel, scroll down until you see the "Domains" tab, press on "Redirects".

Find the domain you want to 301 (expired domain), and select it (in my case it's Yashar.io). Next, replace the other box with your money site (in my case, Google.com, for this tutorial).

Click add and you're ready to rock and roll! Here is feedback we received from a Drip Way SEO domains customer 4 days after she did her first 301s...

As always, if you have any questions feel free to post a comment below and we'll do our best to help you out.

To your success,

The Drip Apps Team

Comments (45)

  1. Thank you so much Yashar. Very helpful. How important is it that the expired domain is a 'niche' match to the domain you are redirecting to?

    • Thanks Pamela! I really haven't seen any more power when using niche relevant domains, I just find something with a nice amount of referring domains and metrics, not paying attention to the niche.

  2. Thanks for the great info. What I'm confused about is when is it better to do 301 with a newly bought expired domain rather than making it a PBN with a link to your money site?

    • Great question. PBN allows you to use the domain for more than one website, since you can make multiple posts and distribute link juice among those. A 301 passes all of the possible link juice from the expired domain to your money site, but can only be used once.

  3. What is your opinion about using 301 from highly ranked non-converting site to better converting site? WILL DOING THAT CAUSE ORIGINAL SITE TO LOSE RANKING BECAUSE OF THE 301? THANKS FOR THE TEACHING.

    • The site that you are 301ing will be removed from the search results. Why not just put a better landing page on the site if it's ranking?

  4. Sorry, please tell me what SAPE and OBL stand for?

    • SAPE is a Russian link network -- please don't use this if you don't have experience with it and the types of links it places. OBL = outbound links on a page.

  5. Nicely laid down!
    A quick question.....between the host and registrar redirection methods, which is more effective?

    • Thanks!

      Generally, registrar is fine if you don't have any hosting, but I recommend hosting. All of the domains are on the registrars temporary hosting and if you have a lot of them and they're all on the registrars temporary hosting (used for domains that are parked, free one-page hosting, etc) it can be a footprint. You can eliminate the footprint by buying $1 hosts and then doing the 301 from those, since 301s don't use any bandwidth (literally bytes of bandwidth) you can just get any cheap host.

      • Thanks for the quick feedback! Another quick question...what is the maximum 301 re-directions you would recommend for a single page?

  6. I have been following your blog for a few months now and none of the methods you have shared on here works for me. The question is are you sharing old stuff that no longer works
    as i wonder why would someone share ideas like these for free?

    • If it doesn't work you're doing it wrong or aren't putting enough effort in it. The real question is why do you keep coming back if they don't work?

  7. Great Post!! Surely Cleared some of my Doubts I had before reading this.

  8. Thanks a lot for that post. I have one question. I have a site, which I couldn't get ranked. I tried many different stuff during around 4 month, but this site just didn't get any good ranking. I used the same strategies on another site and have achieved several #1 spots. So I think the linking strategy should be fine.

    Now to the question. I built another site in the same niche as the one which I couldn't get ranked and used an expired domain for that one. Would it be a good idea to 301 re-direct the one I couldn't get ranked to the newly built one?

  9. Have you tried more than one 301's to the same domain?

  10. I have a good question for you. Let's say I found a domain the domain authority is high but only has good authority for the inner pages not the home page. Would this work? Or would I be better off just turning it into a pbn site?

    • If the inner pages are powerful, then the 301 will automatically redirect Expired.com/one-two-three --> MoneySite.com/one-two-three, which will obviously be a 404 page and expected to be 301d to the homepage or you would have a page named /one-two-three on your moneys site.

  11. Let me be more specific it has good da but the pa crap on home page. Some of the inner pages have decent pa

    • Well, the homepage is where the domain authority is supposed to be. It is the domain after all. For the page authority, it's supposed to be on the inner pages because... well... they are pages. Not quite sure what your question is.

  12. yashar I think you knew that I was anxiously finding a good guide about 301 redirection! excellent sharing young boy, now my another confusion is about google's algorithms for different types of contents like authorities, quotes, ecommerce, local sites, forums! I'd love to have a detailed explaination on treatment of big G with these types of content sites!

    • Thanks Hammad! We're always adding new content so check back here often and we may just cover that.

      • thanks for replying wyatt! i have two questions! 1: aren't we also 301ing the anchortext of the expired domain to money site? like what would happen if I redirect a health niche domain to tech niche money site? isn't it some kind of negative seo i am going to do?
        is it a good idea to use another domain between these 2(expired and money) domains?
        for example: expired domain>> dripapps.org>> dripapps.com

  13. Do you also build links to 301 domain?

    • The domain that you are going to be 301ing to your money site should be links already, you shouldn't send spam to a new domain and 301 if that's what you mean.

  14. Great post Yashar! I learned something new today. I have a couple of questions.

    #1 - Can you recommend some good $1 hosts?

    #2 - When using the registrar method, do you advise using different registrars and register domains under different names, addresses, phone numbers, etc. to avoid leaving a footprint?

    Thanks in advance!

  15. Hi Yashar,

    Like an earlier question about why 301 instead of PBN, I can only see the benefit in spead (301 is quicker to set uop than PBN) but are there any other advantages? I still would choose for a PBN as I can place more than one anchor texts to my money site.

    Thanks for answering.


  16. Thank you Alexander!

  17. Very useful post. Thanks.
    I wanted to understand whether I am using 301 for the right purpose.
    I sell my books on my site and when people purchase them I create a pretty link with 301, with the location of actual link and send them the link. This helps me to know whether/when they have downloaded.
    In 'pretty link' plugin I use 301-permanent and no-follow=true for the pretty link. Do you think this is the right way to achieve my purpose?


  18. Have you tried more than one 301’s to the same domain?


  19. Great topic but how to get backlinks from BBC, Wikipedia, TechCrunch, and Adobe in 14 Minutes like announced in your mail?

  20. Yashar is a a legend.

  21. What do you think of using 301s from foreign country expired domains for a US based website? Thanks

  22. Yashar -- Very helpful. Presented concisely, but clearly. Thanks you.

  23. Hi Yashar

    Re: Link juice from a redirected 301 domain. What's it's half life? Does it remain constant? Will it decline dramatically over, say 12 monthly? Or is it set for years?

    Just need convincing that a couple of Dripways good .sk domains can do a job for me. ☺

  24. Great post and very helpful. Thanks Yashar

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