Setting up redirects can become a regular task if you run a WordPress website. You may take some of your pages down over time, for example, or you might want to move them from one URL to another. Whenever that happens, configuring a redirect properly ensures that users still arrive where they want to go.
In this article, we’ll talk about what types of redirects you can set up. We’ll also introduce you to the best redirect plugins for WordPress, and help you choose the right one for your site.
Let’s get to it!
What Type of Redirect to Use on Your Website
There are several types of redirects that you can use on your WordPress website. Most of the plugins we’ll introduce you to in the following sections enable you to set up any type of redirect you want. With that in mind, it’s essential to understand the difference between each of them.
Let’s break down the most common types of redirects and when to use them:
In theory, there are particular situations when you’ll want to use 302, 303, and 307 redirects respectively. For example, you can use 303 and 307 redirects to tell browsers not to refresh a confirmation page after users submit a form.
For practical purposes, however, you probably won’t use a lot of 303 or 307 redirects. Form and e-commerce plugins usually handle those situations via built-in functionality. As for 302 redirects, there aren’t a lot of scenarios when it makes sense to temporarily move visitors to another page.
In practice, you’ll most often use 301 redirects. In case you have particular needs, though, we’ll let you know what types of redirects each of the plugins we recommend enable you to use.
Finally, it’s also worth noting that you can implement redirects in WordPress manually by modifying your site’s .htaccess file. However, that’s not an approach that we recommend unless you’re very comfortable editing WordPress core files.
7 Best Redirect Plugins for WordPress
We selected the seven plugins below based on their feature sets, ease of use, and positive reviews. It’s important to note that implementing redirects on your website can lead to errors and SEO penalties if you don’t do it properly (or if your plugin is poorly coded or out of date). With that in mind, we’re also recommending plugins that are well established and frequently updated.
Redirection is by far the most popular redirect plugin for WordPress, and it’s easy to see why. This tool enables you to set up many types of redirects, including:
Redirection can do other things as well, such as automatically monitoring your website for permalink changes and setting up redirections for you when it detects updates. It can also keep a log of 404 errors that visitors encounter, and share that information with you.
By monitoring 404 errors, you’ll have a full list of potential URLs for which you need to set up redirects. Here’s how the redirection setup process looks when using this plugin:
Another benefit of Redirection is that it enables you to determine conditions for each redirect that you set up. For example, you can create redirects that only trigger based on a visitor’s login status, language, or referrer, among other parameters.
Redirection is for you if…
…you want to be able to set up multiple types of redirects and monitor your website for 404 errors. This plugin is also a fantastic choice if you want to configure redirects with advanced rules and parameters.
Price: Free | More Information
2. Quick Page/Post Redirect
This next plugin is all about 301 redirects. Quick Page/Post Redirect enables you to add multiple 301 redirects for your website at once using a simple menu and without tinkering with too many settings:
You can configure redirects to open in a new window or add the nofollow attribute to them. Quick Page/Post Redirect also enables you to add redirect rules directly from the Block Editor when editing individual pages or posts:
If you opt for this approach, the plugin enables you to choose from a broader range of redirect types, including 301, 302, 307, and “meta redirects”. That last type occurs on the client side. Meta redirects aren’t beneficial from an SEO perspective, however, so we recommend against using them.
Quick Page/Post Redirect is for you if…
…you want to set up multiple 301 redirects at once using a simple menu that doesn’t require you to tweak additional settings for any rule.
Price: Free | More Information
3. Safe Redirect Manager
Safe Redirect Manager offers a much more streamlined approach than other redirect plugins for WordPress. It saves redirect rules as custom post types and shies away from features such as 404 error logging since it claims this can cause performance issues (which shouldn’t be a problem with proper optimization).
Regardless of the plugin’s philosophy, it does make it easy to set up new redirect rules. It also supports multiple types, including the following options:
Here’s what it looks like when you’re setting up a new 301 redirect using Safe Redirect Manager:
Another feature worth mentioning is that Safe Redirect Manager supports “wildcard redirects”. A wildcard redirect will divert any visitors trying to access a subdomain to your website instead. That can be useful if you have subdomains that you’re not currently using.
Safe Redirect Manager is for you if…
…you want to use a plugin that enables you to set up multiple types of redirects without having to tinker with advanced configuration options. It’s also one of the only options that support wildcard redirects.
Price: Free | More Information
4. All 404 Redirect to Homepage
In some cases, you might not need to set up advanced redirect rules, and all you want is a way to take care of 404 errors. What All 404 Redirect to Homepage does is set up automatic redirects for any 404 error on your website, so visitors are automatically sent to your homepage. You can customize what URL the plugin redirects users towards:
This plugin also includes a 404 error log, but it doesn’t enable you to set up any other type of redirect rule.
All 404 Redirect to Homepage is for you if…
…you want a simple way to take care of 404 errors on your website, and you don’t have a need for any other type of redirects.
Price: Free | More Information
The 301 Redirects plugin enables you to log 404 errors and set up multiple types of redirects, including:
The plugin offers a simple menu that makes it easy to create new redirect rules. If you don’t want to enter URLs manually, you can choose whether to redirect an address to a post, page, media file, or product:
By using this plugin, you can set up as many redirect rules as you need. Plus, if you’re just starting a new WordPress site, the plugin will let you know if your permalink structure isn’t compatible with redirects.
301 Redirects is for you if…
…you want to use a plugin that includes dropdown menus for choosing which pages, posts, media files, or products to redirect visitors to.
Price: Free, with a premium version available starting at $39 per year | More Information
6. Yoast SEO
Yoast SEO hardly needs an introduction. It’s the most popular SEO plugin among WordPress users, and with good reason. We’ve talked about how to set up Yoast SEO in the past, and it’s still the tool we use for optimizing content on our own blog.
If you use the premium version of Yoast SEO, you get access to a lot of extra features that we didn’t have time to cover in the post linked above, including a redirect manager. This tool enables you to set up new redirects, or let Yoast SEO do it for you when you delete or move a page:
Yoast SEO’s redirect manager supports multiple types of redirection, including:
You can also set two HTTP statuses that aren’t commonly used, which are 410 and 451. The 410 code tells search engines that a page is gone for good and they should de-index it. With the 451 code, you signal that a page is unavailable for legal reasons.
Yoast SEO is for you if…
…you’re already using the free version of Yoast SEO and it’s baked into your day-to-day WordPress operations. In that scenario, purchasing a premium license can be worth it. Yoast SEO premium includes a broad range of other features beyond redirects, including keyword and internal link suggestions, on-demand support, and more.
Price: Yoast SEO Premium licenses start at $89 per year | More Information
7. Peter’s Login Redirect
Peter’s Login Redirect is unlike any of the other redirect plugins for WordPress we’ve talked about so far. With this plugin, you can set up automatic redirects that trigger when users log in or out of your website.
We’ve talked about how to set up and configure Peter’s Login Redirect in the past. So let’s instead focus on why this type of redirect can be useful. For example, it can enable you to divert users from seeing the WordPress dashboard after they log in.
You can add redirect rules for specific users or roles. The plugin also enables you to set up post-registration redirects, which you can use to send users to a ‘thank you’ page:
If you’re running a membership-based website, this type of redirect can be incredibly useful. With this plugin, you can set up as many login and logout redirection rules as you need.
Peter’s Login Redirect is for you if…
…you run a membership website or any other type of operation that requires users to log in to access key features.
As your website grows, you’ll probably need to implement a few redirects to ensure that visitors make it to the pages they’re looking for. Thanks to redirects, you can even minimize the impact of 404 errors on your website. However, all of that is only possible with the right redirect plugin for WordPress.
If you’re looking for an all-in-one tool for managing redirects, the aptly named Redirection is your best bet. On the other hand, if you’re only concerned about addressing 404 errors, check out All 404 Redirect to Homepage. Finally, if you’re using Yoast SEO, you can upgrade to its premium version to get access to redirect functionality (and a lot more).
Do you have any questions about how to implement redirects in WordPress? Let’s talk about them in the comments section below!
Featured Image via Thomas Knopp / shutterstock.com
This content was originally published here.