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  • I have one website.

  • I have two domain names that I want to point to the same site install.

So whether you go to name-one.com or name-two.com you see the exact same site.

Now, I can either set up name-two.com to serve 301 redirect header redirecting to name-one.com – or, I can set up name-two.com as a CNAME in the DNS pointing to name-one.com

What is the different implications for SEO on this? What is recommended?

I would guess it's better for branding to use a 301 redirect, so that visitors will see one consistent url for my site, right?

The reason I want the two domains is that I want a version with regional letters ('ö' instead of 'oe' ) in the name.

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Didn't want to post this as an answer as it seems so short, but as you said - 301 redirect would be the way to go here. –  Anonymous Jun 14 '12 at 10:49
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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Having two URLs offer the same content is a bad thing from an SEO point of view, as you seem to well well aware of. So you need to tell Google which URL is the primary URL and the secondary URL is just a duplicate of the first.

  • If you want both domains to work then use cname to point the two to the same site and then use canonical URLs to indicate the primary domain/URLs

  • If you want the secondary domain just to redirect to the primary domain use 301 redirects to forward users from one site to the other

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ok, if I want to set up a 301 redirect, do I then have to get a separate website/webhotel for the secondary domain, to be able to serve a 301 redirect http header to the browser, or can this be achieved using DNS table settings alone? –  mikkelbreum Jun 14 '12 at 12:36
    
I guess I'd have to set up name-two.com as a cname for name-one.com in the DNS, and then set up a .htaccss rule one name-one.com that will redirect to name-one.com in case the requiest came in via name-two.com ..is this correct? –  mikkelbreum Jun 14 '12 at 12:45
    
You can set up the 301 redirect using one htaccess file. Google it or search this site and you'll find lots of examples to use. It's actually very simple which is a wonderful thing. –  John Conde Jun 14 '12 at 14:04
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