Barry Schwartz reports that an old WebmasterWorld thread has been revived with data on how long it took Google to reassign the PageRank of the URLs he had redirected.
According to Barry, the author had set up a new URL structure and had redirected the old URLs to the new ones using a 301 redirect. If you have ever done this with a client, you know the next thing that happens is their PageRank disappears and they call you frantically at 2am wondering what went wrong.
In an effort to help us better prepare our clients for the impacts of moving a page (or site completely), the author put together the following timeline:
- October 2nd - Site migration and 301’s implemented
- October 10th – Week or so later lost all PR on new URLs (all to PR N/A)
- October 30th – Month later, PR N/A now changed to PR0
- December 29th – 3 months after 301 redirects back to original URL PR
The whole process took about three months, but to reiterate an important point made by Barry:
Although the Toolbar PageRank didn’t appear in the new URLs for three months, it likely had PageRank internally but not yet visible in the toolbar. I am sure the traffic from Google took less than three months to get to where it was.
At any rate, this is a important reminder to document critical processes like these so you can set better expectations for your clients/bosses when redirects need to be created.