Have you ever clicked on a link or visited a website you had bookmarked and were presented with a ‘Page Not Found’ message instead? Generally that’s a result of the web page no longer existing.


So what do you do if you have an old page that no longer exists, or even an older version of your website that you want to catch before visitors find a broken ‘Page Not Found’ link? 


The solution is easy. Create a URL redirect!



Internal Redirects

An internal redirect is when a redirect is created to direct a user from a page of your site that no longer exists to a new page that was created to replace it.


In our example, we have a page on our website titled ‘Friendly Cats’. And since the page has been in existence for a while, it’s been indexed by search engines such as Google, and mostly likely the page URL has been shared or posted or bookmarked.


We decided to change the content on the page to include all pets, so a new page was created and titled ‘Friendly Pets’ to replace the ‘Friendly Cats’ page.

Because the ‘Friendly Cats’ page has been indexed already, the internal redirect is set up to point all references that exist for that ‘Friendly Cats’ page to the new ‘Friendly Pets’ page. That means any search result, shared link, or bookmarked page will take users to the new page.



Setting up a Redirect

To set up a redirect, you need to access the Account Info section in your Dashboard. 

In the Account Info section, click on the Manage Your Redirects tab.



Click the "Add Redirect" button




In the Add Redirect window, fill out the necessary information.




Pattern: This the URL you want to redirect users away from (example: mysite.com/friendly-cats). Because you’re setting up a redirect from a page that has the same domain as the rest of your website (mysite.com) you only want to include the end of the URL strain (/friendly-cats).


The LiveEdit platform uses a certain syntax, requiring a pattern to be used while creating the redirects. What this means is that in the Pattern field, use the following syntax while creating your redirects: ^\/your-url$


For our example, the pattern would be ^\/friendly-cats$


You must follow this pattern to ensure that your redirects will be read properly.



SSL Secure: If you have a page you want to ensure is secure, check this box. This will also switch the URL to your default LiveEdit URL (mysite.liveeditaurora.com) so that you won't have to pay for your own SSL certificate.



Redirect To: This is the URL you would to redirect users to. Again, because we are redirecting from one page of the site to another, all that is needed is the end of the URL.


In our example, the URL would be /friendly-pets.



Type: If your redirect is meant to stay in place, choose Permanent. If you will stop redirecting from the target pattern at some point, choose Temporary. In most cases, you will want to select Permanent.


Preserve Params: Parameters are the elements appended to the end of a URL, and contain extra data used by a website for various purposes. Click this checkbox if you want to keep the parameters. In most cases this box will be checked.



Click the "Add Redirect" button and new entry will appear for the redirect you have created.




External Redirects

An external redirect is when a redirect is created to direct a user from an outside source to a page on your site.


An example would be if you had a previous website on a different platform. That website has been indexed and shared and bookmarked in the time that is was active. Now that you have moved to the LiveEdit platform with your new site, any references to your previous website will result in a broken ‘Page Not Found’ link, so an external redirect is set up to direct those references to your new website.


Note: With external redirects, the presumption is that your are using the same domain name for your LiveEdit website that you had for your previous website and that you have completed the process to set your LiveEdit website live.



To set up your redirect, you follow the same steps outlined previously.


In the Add Redirect window, once again fill out the necessary information.



Pattern: This the URL you want to redirect users away from . Because you’re setting up a redirect from your previous website that has the same domain as your LiveEdit website (mysite.com) you only want to include the end of the URL strain just as before (/schedule).


And just as before, the LiveEdit platform requires a pattern to be used while creating the redirects. What this means is that in the Pattern field, use the following syntax while creating your external redirects: ^\/your-url.php$


For our example, the pattern would be ^\/schedule.php$


You must follow this pattern to ensure that your redirects will be read properly.



SSL Secure: If you have a page you want to ensure is secure, check this box. This will also switch the URL to your Default LiveEdit URL (mysite.liveeditaurora.com) so that you won't have to pay for your own SSL certificate.


Redirect To: This is the URL you would to redirect users to. Again, because we are redirecting from a previous website with the same domain name, all that is needed is the end of the URL.


In our example, the URL would be /schedule



Type: If your redirect is meant to stay in place, choose Permanent. If you will stop redirecting from the target pattern at some point, choose Temporary. In most cases, you will want to select Permanent.


Preserve Params: Parameters are the elements appended to the end of a URL, and contain extra data used by a website for various purposes. Click this checkbox if you want to keep the parameters. In most cases this box will be checked.


Click the "Add Redirect" button and new entry will appear for the redirect you have created.






URL Redirect Examples


Redirect from one page on your site to another page on your site

In this example, we will redirect users coming from a page on our site ("cat-loves-dog"), and send them to a second page within our site ("cat-loves-dog-more").

Pattern: ^\/cat-loves-dog$

Redirect To: /cat-loves-dog-more


Redirect to one page on your site to an external site

In this example, we will redirect users coming from a page on our site ("my favorite places"), and send them to an external website (in this example, Google.com).

Pattern: ^\/my-favorite-places$

Redirect To: http://www.google.com




Using a "wildcard" in your redirect

Wildcards are special characters that tell your redirect to match against this PLUS anything that might come after it. It's very simple and extremely powerful, and might be best illustrated with an example.

Pattern:^\/?cat-loves-dog

Redirect To: http://www.google.com

The above settings would take any page whose name began with "cat-loves-dog" and direct them to Google.com.

It would also work with "/cat-loves-dog-more" and "/cat-loves-dog-the-most", but not with “/cat-loves", because their paths differ before the wildcard (cat-loves-dog) resulting in no match.