See how to easily create redirects for deleted posts, shortlinks, affiliate link cloaking, as well as grouping links and tracking clicks.
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More Redirect Tutorials
See instructions and screenshots of this tutorial.
Install the Redirection Plugin
You can find it in the WordPress plugins repository.
When you first install it, you’ll see a very basic tutorial.
Complete those screens.
Once you’re finished, a tab for Redirection will be listed under Tools in your left admin sidebar.
Simple 301 Redirect
Let’s create a redirect for a deleted post.
This will be a 301 redirect type, meaning that it is permanent.
The Source is the original URL, or permalink of the post we deleted.
The Target is the URL of the new post that we want to redirect readers to instead.
Let’s say I had created a page called classes and I deleted it and now I want to send folks to a new page I created called tutorials instead.
So, my source link would be https://blogaid.net/classes/
You can put the entire permalink in the Source. But Redirection will strip out the domain part and only leave the slash and the slug, which is the last part of the permalink.
You also want to ensure that you leave the trailing slash at the end of the permalink.
Then input your Target URL where you want folks to go.
And you do need to input the entire URL, domain and all, plus the trailing slash at the end.
So that will be https://blogaid.net/tutorials/
Leave all of the other settings as they are.
And click the Add Redirect button.
The new redirect will appear in your redirect list.
Now let’s create a shortlink, which many site owners do for special sales pages or to cloak affiliate links.
Let’s say that my original link is a long string of affiliate code.
And let’s say I want to share a prettier link with the public.
So I put in my prettier link as the Source, as that is the one that I will share on my site.
And I put in my ugly link as the Target.
And click the Add Redirect button.
Now, for shortlinks on your own pages, I suggest that you simply edit the slug before you Publish the post. That way you don’t have use a redirect at all.
But, if you’ve already shared the longer link, you can make a shorter one here as we’ve just shown, and advertise the new, prettier one.
Okay, let’s say that you have a bunch of deleted posts that you want to redirect, and several shortlinks that you want to track clicks on.
You don’t want them all jumbled up together in this list to have to look through.
That’s where Groups come into play.
Add New Group
In the Add new redirection section, you’ll see a drop-down for Group.
By default, it is set to Redirections. The other choice is Modified Posts.
Before you can use a new Group here, you have to create it.
Scroll up to the top of the page.
You’ll see a link for Groups.
Here you can add a new Group.
Let’s add one for Deleted Posts.
Type that into the Name.
Leave the drop-down set to WordPress.
And click the Add button.
Edit Redirect to Change Group
Now, let’s edit one of the redirects we’ve already created to go into that new Group.
Click on Redirects.
In the list we see the classes redirect I created.
You can either click the redirect itself, or the Edit link.
Click the drop-down for Groups, and select the new one that you created.
Then click the Save button.
In the future you can just select the new Group as you are creating the new redirect.
Now let’s talk about the tracking logs that are available in Redirection.
And this is important because it can impact your page load speed.
Scroll up to the top.
You have two sets of logs.
One is called logs, which tracks all clicks on your redirected links.
The other is called 404s, which tracks redirected links that didn’t work correctly and resulted in a 404 not found error.
All of these logs build up in your database. And a bloated database can slow down page load time.
So decide if you really need to track this information or not.
Go to Options to change these log settings.
Here you have settings for each of the logs.
In the drop-downs you can select how long the log information is kept.
Your choices are:
- No logs
- A day
- A week
- A month
- Two months
So, if you know you’ll never be looking at these logs, set both of these to No logs.
Otherwise, set it for the schedule of how often you’ll be looking at them so that they will auto clear out of your database and never bloat it.
Import / Export Function
One last feature I want to point out is the Import/Export function.
If you have a bunch of redirects, you can create a spreadsheet and save it as a CSV file and import it.
You can also export a list of all of your redirects as a CSV file too.
And, you can export both of your logs. So, that way you can regularly download a record of clicks and 404s and still not bloat your database.
Import Redirects from other plugins
Plus, there is a Plugin Importers function that will auto detect any other redirect type plugins you may have installed on your site and import them to Redirection so you can get rid of the other plugin.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this quick tutorial on the basics of using the Redirection plugin.
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