Bulk Redirecting URLs in Cloudflare

For years, Cloudflare has had the page rules section where you can setup redirect rules. But you’re only allowed 3 page rules per domain on a free account, which severely limits the redirect options so many don’t use it.

However, at the end of 2021 Cloudflare released its new bulk redirect setup.

These extend the Cloudflare redirect functionality, and offer more flexibility with one-to-one redirects, rather than just a handful of rules.


What is the Cloudflare bulk redirect feature?

The bulk setup allows for the creation of redirect lists, where you can have significant quantities of one-to-one redirects setup.

These aren’t redirect rules, they’re literal one URL, to another URL redirects.

They’ve mentioned the following in their launch post however;

There is still a requirement for supporting more complex, rich URL redirects, e.g., device-specific URL redirects, country-specific URL redirects, URL redirects that allow regular expressions in their target URL, and so forth. We aspire to offer a full range of functionality to support as many use cases as possible.

So hopefully that means either this functionality, or additional, will be launched to support more bulk managed redirect rules.


How to bulk redirect URLs inside Cloudflare?

This is how you create a set of bulk redirects in Cloudflare.

1. Log into cloudflare, and on the overall account management screen click on ‘Bulk Redirects’ in the left menu

2. Create a new redirect list first, so click the text link and then click ‘create new list’ on the new page that loads

3. Enter a name & description, and then make sure you click on ‘redirect’ content type and not the default IP selection.

4. You’ll come to a config page, where you can click ‘add items’

5. Enter all your one-to-one redirects manually, but entering the source and the target URL. You can also just upload a single CSV that has these two columns, and import that directly into cloudflare. Keep in mind that HTTP and https URL versions will be treated separately, so either add both variations or have a separate page rule handle the HTTP > https portion.

6. Once you created your list, go back to the bulk redirects page, and click on ‘create bulk redirects’ button

7. Add a name, and select the new redirect list you just created at the bottom of the page, and click ‘save and deploy’.


Once that magical save and deploy button is hit, your redirects should pretty much be live. Go and test them at httpstatus.io or a similar tool to ensure you’re not cached, and you should see the redirects live within a minute or two.


How many bulk redirects can be set up?

Cloudflare offers completely free accounts with just the 20 bulk redirects, however, if you have just a single paying property (20/month) you get access to the 500 across all sites as these are at the account level.

Definitely worth having a single account upgraded for these alone, considering how many you can have, and how easy they get set up.


Should you be using this new Cloudflare feature?

It really depends on what you’re trying to achieve, and whether the quantities allowed fit into what you need.

If you have a dev team, and a full server setup, then yeah this won’t be what you want.

If you’re just moving URLs around on an existing site, then probably not either.

But if you’re deprecating one site, and merging it into another, where you don’t want to have any hosting maintained for the old domain, this is exactly the product you need.

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