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Subdomain keywords against directory name

10:48 pm on Nov 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I'm creating a website from scratch. Which would work better in Google SERPs?

eg. (this is an example)



[edited by: Receptional_Andy at 7:56 pm (utc) on Nov. 24, 2008]
[edit reason] Exemplified URLs [/edit]

8:05 pm on Nov 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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It's a perennial question, Seb7: subdirectory/subfolder or subdomain [google.com].

To be frank, using one or the other is not going to give you much noticeable benefit in search results - it depends on the links to the URLs and the content within them.

Generally speaking, a subdomain implies content that is "owned" by the domain name, but has a distinct purpose could not be covered within a single website. Whereas a subdirectory implies content that is a logical subsection of the domain name - part of a collection of content within that domain.

So for me, privacy.example.com (for a half dozen or so documents about privacy) wouldn't make any sense, unless it as a subject of big significance to example.com. www.example.com/privacy/ seems more logical.

As a counterexample, customers.example.com (for a customer portal) seems very logical.

There are technical issues too - typically subdirectories are quick to set up, and can be managed alongside other content on the domain. A subdomain is closer to a standalone site, with the additional work (but greater flexibility) associated with that. You can point a subdomain at an entirely different hosting company, for example.

Many people would see it as just a question of personal preference.


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