Musielak Marek

Posted on Thursday, July 21, 2011 by Marek Musielak

Has Google PageRank started to ignore 'www'?

Nearly year ago I became crazy about optimizing websites performance. YSlow and PageSpeed became my closest friends. One of their advices was to serve static content from cookieless domains. Unfortunately, my private web site url was (without 'www.' prefix) so I wasn't able to create any cookieless subdomain as all '' cookies were used for subdomains.

That was the reason why I changed the url of my website to and redirected (with 301) all the calls from the url without 'www' to the new addresses. One month later PageRank of all pages within my site dropped to 0. I wasn't the happiest person in the world but there was nothing I could do. I left everything as it was hoping that the value of the content would earn its PageRank back.

One week ago I noticed that the PageRank of my website pages is back. More surprisingly, now it has the same values for the pages for both urls starting with 'www' and without, despite the fact that urls without 'www' are redirected. I'm sure one year ago Google didn't give any PageRank for the pages that were redirected with 301. Why did they change their minds? Is the current solution better? What would happen if I switch my domain back to the without 'www'?

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3 Responses to Has Google PageRank started to ignore 'www'?

  1. skolima
    July 21, 2011 at 4:46 PM
    I'd guess they finally agreed with the awful practice of serving the same content under two unique urls - but I haven't read any news yet to confirm this.
  2. bartaz
    July 21, 2011 at 6:54 PM
    As far as I remember Google understands redirects and keeps page rank for pages redirected as '301 moved permanently' even if the change in URL is much bigger than 'www'. This allows to change URL structure without loosing page rank.

    At least that's how I understand what I've read a while ago (sorry but I can't find a link anymore).
  3. Marek Musielak
    July 21, 2011 at 9:34 PM
    Bartaz, I used to think that google works like this and that's why I changed the domain from to without even thinking about it. However it looks like it doesn't work, at least for the whole site.

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