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Subdomains: use and advantages

The concept of subdomains and how they work

If you are planning to create multiple websites, using subdomains can be a helpful way to run different websites in parallel under the same main domain name. In this article, we would like to explain what they are and why they can be advantageous to use. We will also explain the differences between subdomains and subdirectories.

A closer look

Essentially, a subdomain is an additional extension of your domain name. Its main purpose is to allow you to navigate to different parts of your website while making them appear as separate websites. It is possible to create multiple subdomains (also known as child domains) under your main domain.

Here is a simple example: store.example.com

In this case, "store" represents the subdomain, "example" is the main domain and ".com" stands for the top-level domain (TLD). You have the freedom to use any word you want, but you should make sure that it is easy for others to grasp and remember.

Subdomains vs. subdirectories in comparison

Subdomains are similar to subdirectories, but there are certain differences. Both are basically storage locations for files in the server's directory structure that are specified in a URL.

Subdirectories are "subordinate directories" (folders within another folder) that are located under a parent directory (Home). Subdomains work in a similar way.

Now we come to the differences.

While both serve as storage locations for content, subdomains act as independent websites and have their own URL (subdomain.example.com). Subdirectories are an extension of your original URL (www.example.com/unterverzeichnis).

This distinction has an impact on your website and its ability to capture keywords and rank them in search results.

Let's explain these differences in more detail so you can get a better understanding of their impact on content indexing and your domain's SEO.

Reasons for using subdomains (areas of application)

There are various situations in which its use can be beneficial. Some examples are

  1. Test or staging environmentYou can set up a subdomain for your website on which you can test WordPress, for example. This allows a separate installation of your main website. Developers often use a staging website to test new plugins or updates before making changes to the live site.
  2. Customized user websitesWebsites such as WordPress.com, Blogger.com and similar platforms offer their users the possibility to create custom websites that are used as subdomains in their hosting area.
  3. E-commerce storeCompanies often separate their e-commerce store from their main domain in order to keep the operation of transactions separate. This is because e-commerce websites usually require more complex configurations.
  4. Mobile versions of websitesYou could also use it for the mobile version of your website, for example "m.example.com".
  5. Location-specific websitesTo offer different language versions of the same website, subdomains can be used, such as "en-us.example.com" for English and "de.example.com" for German.
  6. Subsections of a websiteThey can be used to represent specific areas of your website, such as "forum.example.com".

Subdomains can be extremely useful if you want to organize the content of your website more effectively. Using them correctly will not affect the SEO of your website. Nevertheless, we recommend keeping everything under the same domain name and not using subdomains for public websites.

Effects on search engine optimization (SEO)

Google treats a subdomain as an independent website. Therefore, you have the option of establishing a separate authority for each subdomain. In some cases, using subdomains can be beneficial for your SEO efforts. Let us explain some reasons:

  1. Integration of keywords in URLsThere are situations where it is impractical to include certain keywords in your main URL. However, by using subdomains, you can easily integrate hard-to-rank keywords into your domain, which can have a positive impact on your overall ranking.
  2. Improved user experience (UX)If your website is large, confusing or difficult to navigate, this can lead to a poor user experience. Such an experience leads to a higher bounce rate and a poorer SEO ranking. Subdomains can help to simplify navigation on your website and improve the user experience.
  3. Building niche authorityBuilding your authority in a niche takes time and effort. However, ranking in niche markets can be quicker and easier. The authority you build through rankings and creating smaller markets can help boost the overall authority of your main domain name.

Find subdomains in cPanel

For more detailed instructions on how to create domains, please refer to our guide on managing domains in cPanel.

Related article: How do I manage my domains in cPanel?

Should you use subdomains?

Deciding whether you should use subdomains depends on your individual perspective and personal preferences. They offer a way to provide different resources within the same domain name without confusing users and maintain the main brand on the internet. This can also save costs as there are additional fees associated with registering a new domain name.

Their use should therefore be carefully considered and based on your specific requirements.

If you have any questions or need help, please do not hesitate to contact our Contact support team. We are there for you around the clock to resolve your concerns.

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