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http (without www) vs www
rogoff




msg:4319998
 2:54 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

I'm developing a new web app and I've been pushing to use http://example.com instead of www.example.com (in other words, to eliminate www). Why? Because it's quicker to say, faster to type and generally easier to communicate. There may be other good reasons too that I just don't know about. What do people think - is this a good or bad idea?

 

bhartzer




msg:4320002
 3:04 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

You've already established that you want to use the .COM rather than WWW.DOMAIN.COM. That's just fine.

What is important here, though, is that you "choose one" and not have duplicate content on both the www and the non-www. Whether or not you use the www vs non-www, I would consider that a personal preference.

rogoff




msg:4320010
 3:15 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thanks for your comment. Yes, the idea would be to use a 301 redirect on the www.

g1smd




msg:4320161
 7:46 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

If you use the www it is then easier to see what is going on with Duplicate Content indexing:

site:www.example.com

site:example.com -inurl:www

It is still possible to "brand" as example.com

rogoff




msg:4320167
 7:57 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

I'm not sure I'm following you. Why would there be any duplicate content?

g1smd




msg:4320181
 8:18 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

If www and non-www both directly serve content with HTTP "200 OK" status you have Duplicate Content.

gpmgroup




msg:4320213
 9:33 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

Try a few major sites like webmasterworld.com etc.

From a theoretical RFC point of view the non www should redirect to the www. This doesn't need to affect branding.

While it can be argued that branding has surpassed the classical way of doing things it can also be argued that this approach could be limiting in the future (depending on how the web evolves).

rogoff




msg:4320220
 9:48 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

g1smd - I'm not sure if you noticed above that I mentioned that www would have a 301 redirect to non-www. This eliminates any issues with duplicate content. Non-www websites are very common, for example Twitter or Wordpress, so my question was not really about whether it was technically possible but thanks for your comments anyway.

g1smd




msg:4320265
 12:28 am on Jun 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

Yes, but I do the redirect in the other direction, redirecting TO www.

Check out Google. You think of "google.com" and you probably type in "google.com". When you do that, they redirect you to the www version.

rogoff




msg:4320421
 10:57 am on Jun 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

Yes, whereas Twitter do it the other way around. My question was more to gauge opinion on whether it's a good thing to do or not. I know that it's technically possible to do it either way and there are very large, very successful sites doing it both ways.

Tom_Cash




msg:4320426
 11:09 am on Jun 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

My personal preference is to have the www. - but I'm of the understanding it doesn't make much of a difference provided your website makes a proper use of 301 status codes.

I also think www. is the preference of most websites out there.

But as long as you redirect your user correctly and quickly, I guess it doesn't matter.

g1smd




msg:4328212
 12:07 pm on Jun 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

See also: [webmasterworld.com...]

g1smd




msg:4328662
 9:47 am on Jun 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

See also: [webmasterworld.com...]


This just in: [webmasterworld.com...]

ProbablyMike




msg:4328714
 11:45 am on Jun 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

One thing I've noticed a lot is that if you tell "the man on the street" to go to example.com they will instictivly start typing www

But as long as the redirects work properly then I don't really see a problem.

The problem starts if you have other subdomains, I've witnessed my Mum do this.
I said "go to news.example.com" and she entered "www.news.example.com" which gave a DNS error.

g1smd




msg:4328719
 12:04 pm on Jun 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

In that case the site should redirect requests for
www.news.example.com to news.example.com.

I've recently set this:
example.com -> www.example.com
and this:
www.wiki.example.com -> wiki.example.com
on a site.

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