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View Full Version : 2 Domains to a New Site - What's Best Practice?


JamesTaylor
06-29-2008, 04:51 PM
I'v built a new website and have purchased 2 domains for it, the .co.uk version and the .com version. What i'm looking to do is have both the domains point to the site, having done some reading i can see a few options but being new to this side of things i can't get my head round it all properly!

A 301 redirect seems to be the generally preferred option, however this always seems to be in relation to existing pages where people don't want to loose or incur penalty's on their page ranking etc...

However, i don't have any page ranking as yet as the site will be going live once i figure the best way forward with this issue. So is a 301 still my best option? If it is, do i have to purchase a 2nd hosting plan so i can assign 1 domain to each and place a .htaccess file in one or the others root directry?? Purchasing a 2nd hosting plan wouldn't be my preferred option as obviously i'm increasing my costs.

I have registered the domains and taken hosting with the same company, HeartInternet, they offer the ability to configure an automatic redirect for one of the domains but will this be classed as duplicate content etc. and will i then incur penalty's with search engines?

I have also read about Domain Mapping, this generally seems to be in relation to blogs but it seems that this would also achieve my goal of having 2 domains pointing at the site... again though i am unsure as to the consequences of setting it up this way in terms of adverse affects with search engines.

Any advice on my best way forward with this would be much appreciated!

Ricky55
06-29-2008, 09:00 PM
Who ever you registered your domains you should be able to change the DNS yourself so the domains point to your website.

domedia
06-29-2008, 10:07 PM
So is a 301 still my best option? If it is, do i have to purchase a 2nd hosting plan so i can assign 1 domain to each and place a .htaccess file in one or the others root directry?? Purchasing a 2nd hosting plan wouldn't be my preferred option as obviously i'm increasing my costs. Yes, and you should have a hosting plan that let's you set up several web domains (on the same hosting account). They go for -$10/m. If you talk to your host, I;m sure they let you know how many domains you can have on your current hosting package.

JamesTaylor
06-30-2008, 09:31 AM
Thanks Guys,

i got in touch with the hosting company to clarify how they implement their automatic redirects which can be configure via they control panel, they came back to say that they were done via a 301 so i guess that is perfect for me!!

I've now set up the .com to redirect to the .co.uk version and am just waiting for it kick into effect now!

Ricky - i can amend the DNS myself but won't simply pointing both domains at the same place cause me problems with search engines and duplicate content??

Domedia - are we talking about registering several domains, having one assigned to the actual hosting package and the remaining domains "parked" on that hosting plan?? Or are you saying i should be able host unique website1, website2, and website3 on the same hosting plan and have individual domain names for each site??

actually now i think about it i could "park" various domains on the account and redirect them to individual folders on the hosting, therefore achieving the above??

sorry to be a bit lame with the subject - i understood this when it was simply a hosting plan and single domain name for a single website!! Just trying to understand the different scenarios and terminology, which i think i do, but i'm not sure i have it all in the right order yet!!

anyone care to inform me one way or the other!!

JamesTaylor
06-30-2008, 09:43 AM
on 2nd thoughts...

if i redirected "parked" domains to specific folders on the hosting account once redirected they would all display the main domain name associated with plan and then the name of the sub folder, which wouldn't really achieve unique website1, 2, 3 etc. although it may display unique pages?

Well i'm doing quite a job of confussing myself here!!

what you are actually saying is that i should be able register several domains on one account - assign 1 to be the main associated address and then redirect the remaining "parked" domains to the main address....

And according to my host when i implement this scenario via their control panel it is achieved using a 301.

If i am correct that seems straighter in my head now!

Also am i correct to refer to a domain that is registered to an account but itsn't the main associated address as being "parked" or am i confusing its meaning?

Thanks for bearing with me on this!

domedia
06-30-2008, 01:06 PM
That's 1243 questions, and I agree I think you're confusing yourself a little :)
You can basically do whatever you want with your domains and hosting package. The exact limitations would be determined by your host.

What exactly are you trying to do? You're asking questions about hosting plans, parking domains, 301 redirects etc. If you just want both domains to go to the same web files, just park the other site. No reason to make it more complicated than that. :)

and parking a website is not a 301 redirect.

JamesTaylor
06-30-2008, 02:18 PM
Domedia, sorry to labour the point but you are right, i am confused and perhaps i'm not helping by looking at it so closely... but if something is worth understanding i figure its worth understanding properly to avoid problems later on!

In my 1st post i outlined that i wanted 2 domains to point at a website without incurring penalty's in relation to search engines ranking and outline a few options i had read about.

From the post i recieved 2 reply's, the 1st suggesting that i can edit the DNS to make both domain names point at the same place (as i understood it this would be classed as duplicate content by a search engine?? i may be wrong?).

The 2nd reply was from yourself agreeing that a 301 redirect would be most appropriate. However in your last post you say to "just park the other site" and that "parking a website is not a 301 redirect". which is obviously in contradiction to your 1st post

These comments and the way that terms seem be used differently in various bits i've read are whats leading to my confusion.

When you say "parking a website" is it the same as "parking a domain"? because to me a "website" and a "domain" are referring to different things....?

I do very much appreciate you taking the time to help and i apologies for dragging it out, i just want to make sure i get it right and ensure i'm not creating myself problems for the future!

domedia
06-30-2008, 02:53 PM
You're right, it's called parking a domain. :-)
a) If other websites are linking to your new domain, then it's a good idea to do a 301 because search engines will spider that new domain.
b) If this is a domain you bought that is not linked in from anywhere on the web, you can just park it (easier), without having to worry about any duplicate content penalty from search engines.

Duplicate content.
This will 90% of the time not give a search engine penalty to the original website, only the one that is considered a duplicate. The search engines do not want to have their index full of duplicate content, so they try to figure out which one is the original one. In your case duplicate content is not an issue because you're going to park a brand new domain, and only promote/market the original domain.

JamesTaylor
06-30-2008, 08:29 PM
i think its becoming clearer!

so from what i've read and your last post:

if we had the scenario that the .com version had already been up and running for a while and had built up a search engine ranking / links into it but i was wanting to replace the .com with .co.uk i would use a 301 on the .com to redirect any traffic to the .co.uk - this way i wouldn't be loosing search engine ratings already built up.

Since mine is a new site and both domains are new registrations they don't have search engine rankings built up yet or any links to them from other sites, as such i can assign the .co.uk version as the main associated domain to the site and park the .com version so it points to the same files as the .co.uk - The search engine will try to determine which domain name was the original and won't penalise it as having duplicate content, however the remaining domain will be pushed down the rankings so not to fill the search results with duplicate entries!

This leads me on to a couple of further question:

when the 2nd domain (.com) has been parked would the best method to point it at the same content as the 1st domain (.co.uk) be to amend its DNS so it is the same as the 1st domain's (.co.uk)

Since both domains are brand new is there any method to ensure that a search engine will index the appropriate one as being the primary one? - in this case the .co.uk version.

finally, does all the traffic that comes to the site via either of the domains get attributed to the primary domain in terms of building up a search engine ranking?

Thank you once again for helping me understand this and taking the time to answer my questions!

domedia
07-01-2008, 12:46 PM
i think its becoming clearer!

so from what i've read and your last post:

if we had the scenario that the .com version had already been up and running for a while and had built up a search engine ranking / links into it but i was wanting to replace the .com with .co.uk i would use a 301 on the .com to redirect any traffic to the .co.uk - this way i wouldn't be loosing search engine ratings already built up.
Correct

Since mine is a new site and both domains are new registrations they don't have search engine rankings built up yet or any links to them from other sites, as such i can assign the .co.uk version as the main associated domain to the site and park the .com version so it points to the same files as the .co.uk - The search engine will try to determine which domain name was the original and won't penalise it as having duplicate content, however the remaining domain will be pushed down the rankings so not to fill the search results with duplicate entries! Correct


when the 2nd domain (.com) has been parked would the best method to point it at the same content as the 1st domain (.co.uk) be to amend its DNS so it is the same as the 1st domain's (.co.uk) It doesn't matter

Since both domains are brand new is there any method to ensure that a search engine will index the appropriate one as being the primary one? - in this case the .co.uk version. If they're both new do a 301.

finally, does all the traffic that comes to the site via either of the domains get attributed to the primary domain in terms of building up a search engine ranking? With a 301, yes

Thank you once again for helping me understand this and taking the time to answer my questions! A bunch of repeating to be honest, but I guess it's all good. :)