How Bad URL Structure Prevents Sitelinks
A client’s internal team revised their web site a few months ago, and they noticed that their “sitelinks” went away in the process. Sitelinks are those indented listings below a regular Google result. For example:
These are a handy way to get more traffic to your site, especially for branded searches where folks may want to click directly to a specific page on your site instead of going to your homepage and then clicking around.
In our case, the client lost their sitelinks because they installed WordPress in a folder instead of at the root of their site. So their URL structure was like:
Initially we thought the problem was just that their web root (www.site.com/) needed a 301 redirect to www.site.com/Wordpress but adding that didn’t get their sitelinks back. Instead, we had to move WordPress up to the root. Instructions are here: http://codex.wordpress.org/Giving_WordPress_Its_Own_Directory
We also used the Redirection plugin to 301 their old URLs to their root locations. An .htaccess redirect would have worked just as well.
One caveat: Be sure to update your Settings: General: Site Address (URL) and not your Settings: General: WordPress Address. The latter is your admin URL and needs to be explicitly in the real folder for your admin area to work. If you break it, you can add this to your wp-config.php (note that the variable name is odd relative to the naming used in the admin area):
We made this update and a week later the site has their Sitelinks back!