A few months ago, I learned that my site (removed) had been doing something very wrong, in that we did not have a proper 301 htaccess redirect set up for example.com vs. www.example.com meaning that Google was essentially crawling each of those as its own site, thus cannibalizing our own SEO.
So we fixed that.
But I just discovered another peculiar quirk in our URL structure, and I'm posting because I'm concerned it might be doing the same thing: on every individual Q&A page, the "/threads/show/" portion of the URL can be replaced with /t/s/ and it will take you to exactly the same place. For example, these two URLs take the user to exactly the same page:
I don't know why the URL structure was set up like that, but my question boils down simply to the following: how can I tell if Google and other SE's are crawling & indexing those two pages as if they were two distinct entities or not?
IOW, I know that in some cases, a URL's flexible structure is a convenience, but won't necessarily ding my SEO (case in point: example.com/t/s/4371-football-ref takes you to the same place as example.com/t/s/4371-look-ma-nohands << the only routing variable is the number 4371-...it doesn't matter what you put after it.)
But I want to know if the threads/show/ = t/s/ thing is akin to the 301 htaccess thing, in that it may have been having a substantial negative SEO impact.
Edited by Jill, 28 September 2012 - 12:53 PM.
Sorry, removed URLs, it can be asked without links.