When you enter a website URL, have you ever been confused between a ‘www’ and a ‘non-www’ link? What are the differences and which one should you use if you are a website owner? Knowing that popular ambiguous understanding about it, we will clarify the differences and the benefit of each name in this post in the briefest, simplest and most understandable way. Then, hopefully, help you find the answer after reading this post.
What Is The ‘www’ And ‘non-www’ Address
WWW stands for World Wide Web – or the Internet. That sounds quite familiar to almost everyone, right? The “www” prefix is there to identify the Internet application. In a domain name, when it stands before a “.example.com”, you have “www.example.com”, which is a subdomain name. We have a subdomain name, so what is the original domain? Yes, maybe it’s what you are thinking, it’s “example.com” without any prefix. From this ‘non-www’ domain, or sometimes called the “naked” domain, there are many other subdomains (besides “www.example.com”) found like “mail.example.com”, “demo.example.com” to lead people to other related websites.
How ‘www’ and ‘non-www’ Domain Affect SEO and Website Ranking
We have the same question with many people regarding SEO benefits. While seeking answers, I found a tweet from a user. That’s great minds think alike! John Mueller- Webmaster Trends Analyst at Google replied this tweet like this.
So, the answer from the biggest search engine is “No influence at all”.
However, in the eyes of search engines, it identifies the ‘www’ and ‘non-www’ website as two different websites. So a problem in terms of copyright happens. It will consider that one website copies or duplicates the content from another, which leads to a decrease and loss of website ranking. Therefore, it’s suggested that you just need to stay firm with your favorite choice at the beginning based on your personal view: use ‘www’ or ‘non-www’ website, and declare your favorite domain name with Google or other search engines.
Besides, as it’s not, and never assured which one that users will solely use, sometimes they enter a ‘www’ link, and sometimes they’re lazy to add these three ‘w’, it comes to a solution: redirecting a naked domain to a www-domain and vice versa. That will lead people to the domain that you want despite the ‘www’ or ‘non-www’ link they enter.
Now you see, the existence of ‘www’ and ‘non-www’ link doesn’t matter SEO and website ranking at all if you apply some tips.
The Impact of the “Name” Itself To User’s Experience
It’s undeniable that a ‘non-www’ is shorter and quicker to share, remember and enter. People tend to type a ‘non-www’ link as it’s more convenient, especially if that URL is too long.
However, when they look at a URL, a ‘www’ link is more professional. It has an identification value that makes people think of a prestigious and “safe” website as some giants like Google, Facebook, Youtube, Wikipedia. Moreover, if your domain name is short, it makes the whole structure of the name more balanced.
Some Technical Issue About ‘www’ And ‘non-www’ Website
If you care about technical issues, you should definitely pay attention to cookies. Cookies are not a kind of cake, it’s personal data of users sent from a website to save all the user’s activities. Cookies are stored on the user’s computer and it can affect the user’s experience while browsing if their computers have to store too many cookies.
From the browser, cookies are directed to all the subdomains. For example, it will be sent to ‘demo.example.com’, ‘mail.example.com’, ‘dictionary.example.com’, ‘www.example.com’, … and who knows if all these subdomains belong to one owner or not? That spread of cookies means that the third-party can access and use these data for their website if some of the other subdomains belong to other owners. It leads to security concerns because these data may be used for negative purposes. There are many security problems with a website and you’d better avoid even the smallest potential risk. Besides, that causes a problem in terms of performance. Too many unnecessary cookies will make your user’s experience slower and I’m sure that you don’t want that.
When you use a ‘www’ URL, cookies are only passed down to the only exact subdomain you want ‘www.example.com’ instead of other subdomains with a similar origin domain. Therefore, you can avoid all these problems above.
Because a ‘www’ and ‘non-www’ domain name doesn’t affect SEO and website ranking, we can consider other aspects. It can be seen that each name has advantages when just looking at the ‘surface’ of the name. Then, moving to the technical issue, it’s indicated that a ‘www’ is better to use. So we suggest that you should use a ‘www’ link to have a professional, secured website and let your users have a smoother experience.