Using Meta Refresh Redirection
Here is a way to achieve redirection almost on par with a 301 redirection in cases when you cannot use server-side redirection.
Suppose your site is hosted on a hosting account where you don’t have your own real domain. It might be something like http://pages.myisp.com/~myname/ or http://myname.myisp.com/ . You have gone an acquired a nice domain www.newsite.com and some decent hosting. You have loaded up all your pages on the new site. All you need is to be able to redirect the old ones to the new ones.
Your hoster does not support any form of redirection: neither by .htaccess, nor by server-side scripting – nothing. All you can do is use meta refresh. Oh, well all is not lost.
Replace every page (e.g. somepage.html) from the old site with a page built like this:
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd"> <html> <head> <title>Page moved</title> <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1"> <meta name="robots" content="noindex,follow"> <meta http-equiv="Refresh" content="0; URL=http://www.newsite.com/somepage.html"> </head> <body> <p>Page moved to <a href="http://www.newsite.com/somepage.html">http://www.newsite.com/somepage.html</a></p> </body> </html>
Note that the pages have a plain title, no keywords, descriptions nor any content but a meta refresh and a plain html link to the new location. That’s it.
Don’t get creative with css styling and images and any other comments.
The idea is to try to keep a very low profile there and not promote such a page, just redirect it.
This appears to work fine and fairly quickly, especially if the old site being moved is well indexed to start with, so it’s frequently crawled.
This currently works well in Google. No idea of any other search engine.