When IIS Rewrite won’t cut it with your users

First, let me state the IIS Rewrite is an amazing tool, and it definitely has a place in your Sitecore installation. However, URLs are a tool used by Marketers for a variety of things, and sometimes you need to give them direct control over redirects.

Some Familiar Scenarios:

  • A product or product line with a deep URL needs to be advertised with something short and catchy.
  • The company re-classifies some of its offerings, and now key URLs that are used by the sales team aren’t reflected in the new site map.
  • Someone on an external website posted a deep link to content that is about to be relocated.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you didn’t have to schedule a deployment to manage these marketing-oriented tasks? Enter Constellation.Feature.Redirects.

Scalability

Constellation’s solution leverages Sitecore’s Item Buckets functionality under the hood. To retrieve matching redirects, it uses the Sitecore 9.1 ContentSearch API with aggressive Solr “edismax” filters for performance no matter how many redirects you create.

Robust Protection

The in-system management console has extensive redirect validation, preventing users from creating duplicates, dead-ends, or redirect loops. All redirect targets are validated before a user can save a given record.

Usability

Content Authors get a dedicated console for managing redirects, along with the ability to import and export their redirect list.

Performance

The redirect list is only accessed if a given URL hits the Sitecore HttpRequestPipeline and would result in a 404 condition. This ensures that even the most massive redirect list has no impact on normal site performance.

Compatibility

Because Constellation.Feature.Redirects only steps in after Sitecore detects a potential 404 condition, you can still use IIS Rewrite to handle bulk URL tasks:

  • Forcing all URLs to lowercase
  • Canonical hostnames (ex: hostname.com to www.hostname.com)
  • Truncating trailing “/” characters
  • Removing legacy server-side file extensions
  • Relocating entire folders of pages

Further Reading

To see if Constellation.Feature.Redirects will meet the needs of your marketers, check out the documentation. You can also install the NuGet package or review the source code on GitHub.

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