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Important: This article applies to Network Solutions® customers only.

Overview

Web Address Forwarding, also known as Domain Forwarding, can help you accomplish a variety of things. It can protect your brand by registering alternate versions of your primary domain, such as multiple extensions, misspellings and common typos and forward that traffic back to your primary site. You can also use it to maintain the structure of your site as it evolves—redirecting an old domain to a new one or forwarding a subdomain or subdirectory to another page on your site.

Moreover, it can be used to help your search engine rankings by forwarding duplicate content back to its originating source. In simple terms, forwarding can make your site more useful. It ensures valuable traffic doesn’t end up on a 404 page, lost to the web. Instead, it directs site visitors to a page that will serve them with the relevant content they are expecting.

Please select an option below to learn more about Web Forwarding.

How Do I Configure Web Forwarding?

Note: If you do not have Web Forwarding added to your domain, you'll need to purchase it in a separate step. If you have already purchased Web Forwarding, but it's not configured, follow the steps below.

To configure web forwarding, follow these steps: 

1. Click here to log into the Account Manager.

2. Click on Domain Names, which is on the left-hand side of the page. Then, select the domain you want to manage. 

3. On the Domain Details page, scroll down and under Advanced Tools, click on Manage beside Web Forwarding.

Note: You can also manage web forwarding by checking the box next to the domain you want to manage after clicking Domain Names. Then, click Configure and select Web Forwarding.

Another option is to click the Start Forwarding button in your hompage.

4. Click Add Web Forwarding from the Manage Web Forwarding table. 



5. Select the desired Forwarding Source as shown in the image below. For more information, please check How to Forward a Standard URL, Subdomain, or Subdirectory?

a. When configuring forwarding for the first time, you will only be provided the option to setup a forward on a Standard URL. 

b. When setting up subsequent forwards, you will be permitted to set up forwarding on other source types (subdomains, subdirectories or both).  When this is the case, an additional text box(es) will appear upon selection in which you will be asked to specify the subdomain, subdirectory or both as needed for forwarding. 



6. Select the proper protocol from the http:// or https:// dropdown (for more information, please see What is the Difference Between HTTP and HTTPS?) and enter your Forwarding Destination. 

Note: You can preview the forwarding destination by clicking the new tab icon next to the field.

7. Next, choose a Forward Method (for more information, please see What is the Difference Between a 301 and 302 Redirect?).  

8. Upon Add, your new Web Forwarding record will be added to the Manage Web Forwarding table, where you can go on to add new Web Forwarding records, or edit existing records.   

9. Hit Save to commit your changes.

You have successfully configured Web Forwarding! 

 Note: Please allow 24 to 48 hours for changes to update throughout the entire web.


If you want to delete Web Forwarding, follow these steps: 
 
1. From the Manage Web Forwarding table, Click the Edit (pencil) icon to open the record.



2. Click Delete (trashcan icon). 



3. You will receive the alert shown below.  Check the box to acknowledge that you want to continue, and select Delete



Allow 24 to 48 hours for changes to update throughout the internet.

Note: By deleting the URL your domain is being forwarded to, it will point to an Under Construction Page until it gets linked to another service.

If your Web Forwarding service has expired and you want to Renew it, follow the steps below.

1. Click on Domain Names, which is on the left-hand side of the page.  
2. Scroll down and under Advanced Tools, click Renew beside Web Forwarding.

 Note: You can also renew web forwarding by clicking Renew in your homepage under Action Required.



3. Proceed to secure checkout. 

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How Can Web Forwarding Help My Online Business?

There several ways Web forwarding can be used to benefit an online business. 

Forwarding Misspelled Domain Names 

By forwarding domain names, you can take advantage of the frequent spelling errors made by most internet searchers. For example, someone searching for janesbagels.com might mistakenly search for janesbagles.com or jansbagels.com. By anticipating these erroneous web addresses and registering several domain names accordingly, you can begin forwarding your domain names that allow you to cast a wider net. 

Forwarding Lengthy Domain Names 

Web addresses that are lengthy and difficult for visitors to remember can hinder website traffic. Choose a concise, catchy domain name that is relevant to your business and redirect it to your website using website forwarding. 

Forwarding Alternate Domain Names 

When you register a domain name, it is often a smart move to register similar web addresses with alternate extensions (for example: .com, .net, .biz, .info, etc.). Web forwarding helps you ensure that these web addresses are leading to the same place – your website. 

Forwarding Old Domain Names 

Forwarding domain names can be helpful for business owners who want to move their websites without losing website traffic.  Visitors who type in your old web address will be redirected to your new website. In the same way, if someone else's website includes a link to your old domain, those who click will be forwarded to your new website.

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How to Forward a Standard URL, Subdomain, or Subdirectory?

Standard URL Forwards 

Choosing the Standard URL means you wish to redirect the main domain name you are selecting to another destination. (e.g., domainname.com redirects to newdomain.com)

Subdomain Forwards

Note: To forward a Subdomain or Subdirectory, you must first use web forwarding on your primary domain. After you have successfully configured Web Forwarding on your primary domain, go back to the Advanced tool and click Manage beside Web forwarding, followed by +Add Web Forwarding. Please see the image below to serve as an example. Enter the Subdomain after you have set the forwarding source to Subdomain. Click Add, then Save. Please allow 24 to 48 hours for changes to update throughout the entire web.

Choosing to forward a Subdomain allows you to redirect a variation of your domain to a new destination URL. (e.g., shop.domainname.com redirects to newdomain.com) This allows you to select the specific version of your domain you wish to forward versus forwarding the Standard URL. 

You can use subdomains for hosting quote forms, mobile sites, different markets, ecommerce stores, and blogs amongst others. A subdomain gives you the ability to dedicate a separate section of your website without having to build a new site or confuse your visitors with domain redirections.

Note: Using a subdomain will tell search engines to treat it as a separate site. A subdomain is like a second site where you will have to build SEO.

Subdirectory Forwards 

A Subdirectory, or also known as a subfolder, is a folder behind a website address (e.g., domainame.com/store, domainname.com/blog, domainname.com/services, and more). It allows you to redirect a specific page or subsite to a new destination versus the Standard URL or Subdomain.

A subfolder is stored on the very same server of your main domain; therefore, it impacts SEO positively, but also note that rules may change from time to time. Subdirectories are part of your primary domain; thus, it increases the authority and exposure of your website. 

Subdomain + Subdirectory Forwards 

This allows you to forward a combination of a Subdomain and Subdirectory versus Standard URL. An example of a subdomain plus a subdirectory would be you choosing to redirect “shop.domainname.com/store” to forward to newdomainname.com). 

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What is the Difference Between a 301 and 302 Redirect?

To forward your domain name to a different website address, you can use 301/302 redirects. 

301 Redirect Method (Recommended)

A 301 redirect is the preferred method to redirect because it tells users and search engines that your page has been moved permanently. Your website visitors will be redirected to your new page, replacing the old page. With a 301 redirect, all the effort you have invested in building your web presence through Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will be transferred to your new site. 

Below are some instances when it is best to use a 301 redirect: 

  • When transferring a domain 
  • When you are using different URLs for your site 
  • When you have changed the domain name of your website permanently 
  • When you are converting your website from http to https 

302 Redirect Method 

When you use a 302 redirect, it will only redirect your users to the new address for a certain period until you remove the redirect. Using this method over 301 redirect can become a problem when the search engine tries to identify which page has higher value. Note that the search engine will select only one version, which means that the wrong page could end up as the one being listed. 

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What is the Difference Between HTTP and HTTPS?

The new standard for websites is to have an SSL (Secure Socket Layer) certificate, making the address secure. Using HTTPS vs. HTTP ensures that your data is encrypted when information is exchanged between a browser and a web server. Using HTTPS also improves the trust of your visitors by showing that your site is more legitimate and secure.  

If the site, you are redirecting to has an SSL be sure to set the Destination to use the HTTPS so your visitors will get to the secure version of the URL you are forwarding to. 

What is Masking and Why are We Removing It?

Web Forwarding with masking, means that visitors to a given website will only see the domain name (or URL) they typed in the address bar of their browser, rather than the website or page they are being forwarded to (achieved via URL Frame). The URL is cloaking the real address of the website or page, of the server its hosted on.  

Problem 

Forwarding using masking does not resolve in most cases because most servers today block masked forwards from occurring. Also, with masking, visitors are unable to bookmark or share specific pages of a site (that is because the site structure, or actual URL for each page is hidden from view). 

Additionally, it will have a negative impact on SEO. Search engines are actively punishing websites with cloaked URLs and flagging them for duplicate content.  

We are removing this feature in an effort to continually improve on our products as well as your experiences with them. 

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How Do I Remove Masking?

To remove masking in the Account Manager, follow these steps: 

1. Click here to log into the Account Manager.

2. Click on Domain Names, which is on the left-hand side of the page. Then, select the domain you want to manage.

3. Scroll down and under Advanced Tools, click Manage beside Web Forwarding. 

4. Click the Edit (pencil icon) beside the domain you want to disable the masking feature on. 



5. Select Permanent Redirect (301) from the Forward Method dropdown and Add.   



6. Changes will be reflected onto the Manage Web Forwarding table, hit Save to commit.  You have successfully removed masking on the domain! 

Please allow 24 to 48 hours for changes to update throughout the entire web.

Note: Making any changes to the web forwarding record associated with masking will remove masking on the domain permanently, this action cannot be undone.  As such, upon Add/ Save, the forwarding method will automatically revert to the defaulted Permanent Redirect (301) setting.

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