Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from

Forum Moderators: buckworks & webwork

Message Too Old, No Replies

Multiple Domains or sub-domain splits the business



1:29 am on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Hopefully I am posting this in the correct forum.

Opinions please!
The scenario: I own a domain named (alias) "Sadly" and set it up for multiple "shop" owners to subscribe and begin selling only cars. Sadly starts to get bigger and a few shop owners sneak in and start to sell motorcycles. We cannot keep up with removing the listings and soon more shop owners sneak in and sell trailers. And so on...
The current problem: The original Sadly is not being indexed as cars only - because of the motorcycles and trailers, etc. Also the loss of the original philosophy of Sadly as a car selling site.

The proposed solution: Split up the individual sections and open separate domain names for each. The new domain names reflect the original domain, for this example Sadly1, Sadly2, Sadly3 and so on as needed (for this argument, let's say 100+ names). It's a big company!

The question: Why is this a good or bad idea? Search engines should distinguish the difference, each domain is different and a single word search "Sadly" should bring up all names first on the search page. All have the same IP address. It is proposed that each one link back to Sadly.

What am I missing? Would sub-domains be better or worse?

I promise to check in daily, a.m & p.m. US eastern. Thanks :)


3:33 am on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

if car/motorcycle/trailer sales are gowing, and the users want those items listed.......

why don't you just go with it?


3:54 am on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the reply! I'm pre-school on this web stuff, but they still put me in the meetings.
The idea is to separate each "department" or product placement into separate venues. On a grand scale we can look at say, a major eSale site. Instead of having all items under one name, (antiques, cars, jewelry,...) the idea is to split each department into a separate ? and there is my roadblock. Would it be better to have individual domains or sub domains under the original name.

The separation is two fold. One is self management for each department (including healthy competition between departments), the other is increasing market (search) views. Example: If Silly1 is cars, Silly2 is trailers, searching for Silly should bring up both.


12:39 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator webwork is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

A "serious business" (:p,:-/,& ;)) likely needs to focus more on how it will cost effectively diversify its traffic sources and less on whether any strategy "will play nicely with the search engines". Unless you are already a major recognized brand, providing a unique (patentable/exclusive) brand experience, I don't think the old rules (circa 2003-2007) of SEO=survival apply.

I'd build seperate sites IF a) there were strong markets with distinct interests and personas that separate sites might appeal to; and, b) IF the company had a plan to build each in some depth and engage the unique audiences.

Which somewhat begs the question that the company, itself, is structured - organizationally and mentally - to meet such demands. Probably not, so I'd stick to one site . . I guess . . unless you know otherwise. ;)


3:53 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

It's a big company!

What do you call big?

I have to ask since I do not know of any big company that has thrived with no corporate strategy.


4:06 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Webwork: You asked about two IF's, and both of them are a) strong market: yes and b) depth: yes.

I don't know that the company is mentally (or organizationally) structured to meet the demands and you are probably right, they don't have it in 'em!



7:00 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

HuskyPup: roughly 750,000 individual "shops" selling an average of 25 "items" each. Staffing is as thin as possible.

The original corporate philosophy was to sell only cars. As the site grew, other sellers snuck in "related" items (admit poor policing). The cost of policing the offenders has prompted a decision to be made of whether to keep the offending shops in place (losing the original philosophy, and website branding)
or spin-off another site.
or something...which brought me to you guys for an opinion, because reading what you all know is the knowledge that makes the web work (not really a suck up statement, just a factual one :)


9:59 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Ah, ok, so for wont of a better description it's like ebay and everything is user generated? You are just supplying the platform for the shops?

Are all the extra new shops transport and accessory related or have computers, music etc also moved in?

Who's going to look after the site and what type of content management system would you use?


5:02 am on Jan 12, 2011 (gmt 0)

User generated and supplying the platform, yes.

edit: add this line: yes, other items are coming in and policing is too difficult.

Nearly exactly like eBay except in a specific area. (I can't call them out specifically, please, so let's use eB) They started out with the idea of individuals selling items they no longer needed and progressed into a site full of reselling, including some from major oversees corporations. The original site branding has been lost and IMHO, not for the better.
IF this was eBay in question, Would (early the in sites life)a split in the site, leaving eBay.co as the original, and adding eBayC.com as a second site for corporation sales, eBayCC.com as Charity sales site make sense?
You would still have the original site (and values) and subsequent sites for net-shoppers choosing for other sellers.

Each different .com will still be managed by the existing group, with increases promised. CMS is Open Source.

You all realize you are talking me out of this scenario, and well - making me understand it way better :)

Featured Threads

Hot Threads This Week

Hot Threads This Month