Google’s John Mueller recently explained that submitting a URL for indexing, when it redirects to another URL, doesn’t make sense.
Here is the question that was submitted:
In response, Mueller first went over what it means to have an evergreen Googlebot. It’s a fairly recent change that you can learn more about here.
Mueller addressed the redirect question saying that client-side redirects are followed by Googlebot the same way as server-side redirects.
Despite Googlebot being able to follow client-side JS redirects, it still doesn’t make sense to submit a redirecting URL for indexing.
That’s true whether it’s client-side, server-side, JS, or HTML.
A redirect sends a signal to Googlebot that the site owner would prefer to have a different URL indexed.
So, with that said, it makes more sense to submit the URL that should be indexed instead.
Another option is to make sure Google is able to discover the preferred URL. If it’s linked to within the website then Googlebot will discover it during its normal crawling process.
Mueller also adds that using a sitemap file can help Google discover URLs faster.
To hear Mueller’s full response, see the #AskGoogleWebmasters video below: