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No More WWW
I'm through with it and good riddance!
pageoneresults




msg:3541606
 4:07 pm on Jan 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

After 12+ years of promoting www I've now decided to change my ways. From 2008-01-01 forward, I'm going wwwless. Now that I have the knowledge and tools available to me, I'm stripping the www forever.

Okay, so what are the Pros and Cons of my decision moving forward? I'm going to say that I'm not concerned about "dated conventions". I'm looking for branding, short and sweet URI addresses and no confusion whatsoever.

It's even a pain repeating dub-dub-dub. I'm through with it and good riddance!

www > 301 > root

http://example.com/

It doesn't get any simpler than that. :)

[ISAPI_Rewrite]

RewriteCond %HTTPS off
RewriteCond Host: (?!^example\.com$)(.+)
RewriteRule /(.*) http\://example.com/$2 [I,RP]

RewriteCond %HTTPS on
RewriteCond Host: (?!^example\.com$)(.+)
RewriteRule /(.*) https\://example.com/$2 [I,RP]

 

Silvery




msg:3542698
 11:48 pm on Jan 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

Is no one going to mention the "No-WWW Initiative" which has sought to make a sort of official manifesto towards common support for the briefer protocol?

[no-org...]

youfoundjake




msg:3542703
 11:54 pm on Jan 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

Silvery, nice point, let me update the link also,
[no-org...]
:)

caveman




msg:3542706
 12:00 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Nice post Commerce.

Personally POR, I think it's a mistake. Aside from the technically-related concerns (who needs them?), I am not convinced from what I've seen that 100% of redirect link equity gets passed. IF that is true, and given that a majority of naturally given backlinks occur with the www present, it's a no-brainer to use www. Basic math, and I HATE giving up even inches, especially in tough categories.

That, plus, people who pay really close attention to finely tuned linking strategies know that there is a little discussed advantage to using the www as your canonical preference. ;-)

g1smd




msg:3542718
 12:10 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Several large sites have recently moved to using www.domain.com for their sites.

This allows that a site:domain.com -inurl:www search lists anything that has "escaped".

You lose that benefit if you move to using non-www domain.com URLs.

I see no problem in having non-www and www both work, but with one being a redirect. I still prefer that it is the non-www to issue the redirect.

For most sites that I visit, I type in domain.com and the site just works. Most have redirected to the www version, and that is also what will have been indexed.

Quadrille




msg:3542732
 12:21 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Silvery, nice point, let me update the link also,
[no-org...]

Shouldn't that be [no-www.org...]

:)

g1smd




msg:3542739
 12:30 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

>> In Canada, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation promotes its website as <<

>> cbc.ca

Yes! They do.

Type that in and you are redirected to www.cbc.ca/

I much prefer that scheme.

g1smd




msg:3542744
 12:49 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

>> Is no one going to mention the "No-WWW Initiative" which has sought to make a sort of official manifesto towards common support for the briefer protocol? <<

One of their recommendations (Class A) actually promotes duplicate content issues. They do not warn people that they would be very much worse off by following what they suggest there.

Their Class C recommendation stops the www from working at all, and that is a totally brain-dead solution. You want both to work, so that people can type in whatever they like to get to the site, but one should be a redirect.

My thoughts are that you buy domain.com and then you put various services on separate sub-domains, such as ftp.domain.com and www.domain.com and mail.domain.com etc.

Nothing should directly "work" at domain.com but HTTP requests for domain.com should 301 redirect to the www version.

By all means still promote domain.com in offline advertising, so that people don't have to actually type the www in by hand.

g1smd




msg:3542749
 1:12 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Heh, I just tried some sites seen on TV advertising.
They all use domain.com in the advert.

compare*********.com - both work - no redirect.
weight********.com - both work - no redirect.
church***.com - both work - no redirect.
go*******.com - redirects to www.

menial




msg:3542781
 3:01 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Since it's not possible to remove http:// from web address... if we remove "www." people would then try to remember http:// - Then domainers will start registering httpdomain.com. Who needs more confusion? :)

vincevincevince




msg:3542799
 3:47 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

menial, interesting you should say that. It would be much more in line with the use of other server naming schemes to use http.example.com instead of www.example.com... most places use ftp.example.com, smtp.example.com, pop.example.com...

Quadrille




msg:3542926
 8:42 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

What's easier, WWW or http:// ?

Scrap 'em both.

Let example.com be the 'default' for [www...] addresses; after all, that's all that John and Jane Doe ever use.

But let's face it, we're dreaming. What ever happened to 'hey man, go with the flow'?

Josefu




msg:3542952
 10:11 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

""doubwadoubwadoubwa.example.com" (is that French?)"

That would be "doobluhvaydoobluhvaydoobluhvay" : )

ronin




msg:3542989
 11:22 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

I've always liked www. as a useful convention for meaning: "This is the server where I store files intended for web-browser-based access" as opposed to:

mail.myserver.com
ftp.myserver.com

etc.

Pronouncing it in English is a pain though. I much prefer the German (or pretty much anywhere east of the Rhine) "veh-veh-veh" which is quick to say and easily rolls off the tongue.

I did once suggest "U6" (as in "You can find my site at you-six-dot-myserver-dot-com") but it never caught on.

g1smd




msg:3543011
 12:16 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

If your site has a 301 redirect from non-www to www, then you never have to say the www part.

Type in google.com or bbc.co.uk to your browser and see what happens.

Josefu




msg:3543013
 12:29 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

"What ever happened to 'hey man, go with the flow'?"

That works until the flow stagnates... or other forks appear around the bend. To tell you the truth, I find the "www or not" argument almost nonsensical; this of course not because of the people arguing for or against it, but because, at its very root, there is no rationale to the method - at least to the everyday browser and end user. The only case where a logic in the "www.method.com" is clear to all is in differentiating protocols - "ftp.method.com", "mail.method.com", etc - but I don't think this was even www's original intended purpose!

I'm sure there's a history to learn here, and it is probably there that a coherent technical method could become clear, but to tell you the truth, I have to wonder if that method has evolved with our technology. IPv8 is coming, yet we are still stuck with roman-character URL's (in most cases - remembering the early '00's DMOZ-kanji debacle)... the two have nothing in common, but one is evolving, the other not.

I wish there was a more "user-catching" addressing system out there - perhaps something a little looser in its 'characters required/forbidden' rules - that could be a) easy to remember and b) easier to type (or speak).

For now web-surfers have "www or not?", "hyphen or not?" and "what was that dang extension?" roadblocks between they and our websites... for the simple reason that "www" and ".org", to the web-layman, make little ergonomic sense.

[edited by: Josefu at 12:34 pm (utc) on Jan. 8, 2008]

g1smd




msg:3543017
 12:38 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Well, you can type widgetsite into most browsers and they will add www. and .com to it, and go fetch the site anyway.

The reason for the www. is because different services ftp, mail, web, etc, may be placed on different physical hosts.

lammert




msg:3543021
 12:40 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Many sites have a redirect implemented, but not everyone has a proper 301 in place, not even all PR10 sites do it correct.

whitehouse.gov redirects to www.whitehouse.gov with a 302 temporary redirect for example.

Another interesting one is nasa.gov which is in the "only WWW" group. There is no IP address assigned to nasa.gov, and my Firefox and Lynx browsers automatically go to www.nasa.gov. My IE6 refuses to load the www version and instead opens a search window.

Quadrille




msg:3543039
 1:01 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

That's just IE's pathetic attempt to get you using livesearch.

Too bad for M$ if you changed you default search!

youfoundjake




msg:3543182
 3:51 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

g1smd again is pointing out what I mentioned earlier, if a person asks "is there a www in front of that" i can say "no" because of my 301 redirect.
Now as far as print media or broadcast media, my advertising can say "visit us at example.com" and I don't have to worry about anything because of the 301.

And as it has been mentioned before, but I failed to mention, just because I was too hyped up on coffee to form a string of cohesive thoughts, adding the www informs the user what service is being used as oppossed to ftp or smtp or what ever other alphabet soup service is running.

The cons of converting to non-www, I have seen throughout this thread is you may loose functionality as g1smd pointed out in the
site:domain.com -inurl:www search lists anything that has "escaped"
example. The other con is the blindness of what service is being used.

I do still however admit that when I only use the domain name with out the www when typing into the browser.

davidof




msg:3543188
 3:55 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Personally POR, I think it's a mistake. Aside from the technically-related concerns (who needs them?), I am not convinced from what I've seen that 100% of redirect link equity gets passed.

I agree, I've been none www. for four years (with 301 redirect for the www version), I don't think anyone correctly links to my site, they all add www.; I will probably switch back in 2008.

pageoneresults




msg:3543252
 4:50 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

After 12+ years of promoting www I've now decided to change my ways. From 2008-01-01 forward, I'm going wwwless. Now that I have the knowledge and tools available to me, I'm stripping the www forever.

Is it too late to change my mind again? :)

I'll tell ya what, you guys/gals have presented some very good arguments for staying with www and since I'm still in development stage on a new project that was to be the first, I'm going to concede that stripping off my www may not be in my best interest.

I value everyone's input on this matter. I have a new client who is adamant in going wwwless. They've not flipped the switch yet to force it and I'm going to have them read this topic in its entirety before they decide to do so. Right now they are getting indexed under both. And, the www appears to be the winner in total number of indexed documents.

Deep down inside, I knew I wasn't making the right decision. You can promote either or and it appears that www is the "standing convention". As long as you have the resources in place to permanently redirect the non www to www or, vice versa, you are good to go.

For now, I'm putting my www back on. :)

ronin, lammert, haven't seen ya'll in a while. Nice to have you back.

[edited by: pageoneresults at 5:02 pm (utc) on Jan. 8, 2008]

youfoundjake




msg:3543258
 4:58 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Is it too late to change my mind again? :)

The question is, will this thread change your clients mind? I think deep down you knew the right answer all along. :P

caveman




msg:3543355
 6:14 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

I feel so used.

;-)

buckworks




msg:3543452
 7:44 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

I don't think anyone correctly links to my site

You'll get that either way.

I just checked the links for a couple of my own www-less sites. I'll call them example.com and example2.com. According to Yahoo,

link:http://example.com/ - 1550 inlinks
link:http://www.example.com/ - 72 inlinks

link:http://example2.com/ - 46,800
link:http://www.example2.com/ - 3720

I checked another site that I know uses the www.

link:http://www.webmasterworld.com/ - 104,000
link:http://www.webmasterworld.com/ - 380,000

There will ALWAYS be someone who links to you "wrong", so make your decision for your own reasons, and don't worry overmuch about the mistakes you think others might make.

physics




msg:3543604
 11:10 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

pageone, I agree. If we all start redirecting www to non-www maybe people will realize that it doesn't HAVE to be there all of the time. Unfortunately some web sites don't work without it and people are 'afraid' to type a domain without www into their browser for that reason I think.

pageoneresults




msg:3543618
 11:35 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Oh, I'm convinced! And, all of you helped me convince the client to choose the www, thank you very much. Where else can you get this kind of talent discussing issues such as this? Nowhere that I know of. :)

That, plus, people who pay really close attention to finely tuned linking strategies know that there is a little discussed advantage to using the www as your canonical preference.

Don't feel used cavey. That one little tidbit of information put you in the hero spotlight. You can do a search for related topics, my username and site:webmasterworld.com and you'll see that I'm a staunch supporter of www.

And after all these valuable replies, I still am! :)

And in the process, I'm seeing some usernames that I've not seen posting in a while. Either that, or I just haven't been in those forums where they hang out.

Patrick Taylor




msg:3543620
 11:40 pm on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Phew! It's a relief to hear that www is okay after all. I was beginning to get worried about years of work needing to go down the pan. And it's nice to see a thread that starts to come full circle in response to informed opinion.

Josefu




msg:3543637
 12:20 am on Jan 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Er - I'm feeling a bit like the ass for playing the devil's advocate, but for sure "www" is the status quo for 'naming' anything web... and perhaps it would not be in your best (commercial) interests to force an alternate 'flow' on both clients and browsers. For sure it was a question well worth bringing up though - good thread!

caveman




msg:3543687
 2:11 am on Jan 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Aw, don't feel that way Josefu, it's a great debate to have. POR likes to shake things up sometimes, and after all, it was he who played the ultimate devil's advocate here (and proud of it, I'm sure.) He keeps us on our toes. ;-)

Quadrille




msg:3543689
 2:15 am on Jan 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

I just followed a link from the UK daily telegraph to www.usatoday.com - it failed to load until I deleted the www.

How stupid are these sites?

menial




msg:3543719
 3:52 am on Jan 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

How stupid are these sites?

As stupid as we fellow webmasters :.

This 69 message thread spans 3 pages: < < 69 ( 1 [2] 3 > >
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