The htaccess redirects generator tool can perform SEO-friendly URL changes and web migrations—especially when configuring your website's canonical URLs that are meant to be indexed and ranked. That helps avoid losing your former or non-canonical URLs traffic and rankings by redirecting your users and search bots to the new or canonical URLs versions through permanent redirects. The tool facilitates the user to create the 301 redirect code to be pasted in the .htaccess file for redirecting non-www to www or vice versa.
If you are currently working (or have already worked) on some content management system (CMS), you might be familiar with the .htaccess configuration file.
"htaccess" stands for Hyper Text access. It is a configuration file that controls how the server responds to web requests.
Upload the .htaccess configuration file on the web servers running the Apache Web Server software. When the file is allocated on the webserver, it recognizes the file and executes the commands or the instructions mentioned in it.
Creating the .htaccess file is easy and straightforward. You can use any good text editor like Notepad++ or Microsoft VSCode for that purpose. The file consists of several lines depending upon the instructions that the website developer wants to convey.
You require a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) program to upload the file, and the file must be uploaded in the correct directory and must in ASCII format. However, some FTP uses the "BINARY" to upload the file. In that case, you must change it to ASCII.
After uploading, if you try to search for that file in your web directory, you may not find it because the web server's software may try to hide it. So no need to panic because, in some file systems, the files that begin with a dot(.) are treated as hidden files.
You can perform the following action by uploading the .htaccess configuration file on Apache Web Server.
But here, first, you must understand why redirects are necessary?
Search engines like Google consider each version of the URL as a separate entity. It differentiates between the URL with www and non-www, even if they both land on the same domain. Therefore, for Google to know about the primary page, canonical tags are used to avoid keyword cannibalization, and 301 redirects are made so your link juice, ranking, and traffic would not get affected by the redirects.
.htaccess file is a powerful website file that controls the high-level configuration of your website. That file allows you to make changes to your website's configuration without editing server configuration files.
It allows you to make SEO-friendly URL changes or web migration so that your website traffic and ranking would not get affected and redirects the users and the bots from the former URLs to new URLs with 301 redirects.
The SEOs often ask, are too many 301 redirects are bad for SEO?
And the answer is No. There is no limit to using the 301 redirects on your website. You can implement more than 100K of 301 redirects without having any penalty. But too many redirects put unnecessary load on the webserver and reduces the speed.
To get the .htaccess 301 redirect code for redirecting your website from non-www to www or vice versa, perform the following steps.
Note: The order of the URLs in the .htaccess file determines which URL should be executed first. Apply the length formula to calculate each URL's word count and filter them from longer to shorter. Putting shorter URLs at the bottom will prevent it from triggering before the longer URL redirects.