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We are currently planning on registering multiple domains for different parts of the website we own. For example consider that we have example.com as the main domain and have assigned all the sub-departments their own subdomain.
There will be tutorials.example.com, videos.example.com, articles.example.com, etc.
Now for marketing reasons we plan to register examplevids.com, exampletuts.com, etc.
The catch here is all these domains should somehow point to their respective subdomains. We can either use a permanent redirect or have and iframe to display the content directly from the subdomains.
Now I wonder which approach is better considering SEO rules. Will using iframes be considered replicating content by search engines? Or is it at all wise to have different domains?

Thank you.

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5 Answers 5

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Subdomains have been created to do exactly what you want. If I were you, I didn't buy multiple domains and use subdomains instead. You don't need to spend money for this.

Moreover, buying many domains means working SEO of multiple websites. With only one domain, you can create a community around a website (a brand). And you can link all subdomain to top level domain to build netlinking. For your information, each subdomain is considered by Google as a website.

Otherwise, iframes are bad for SEO, don't use them.

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I don't recommend you to use either related domains or subdomains. Subdomains are treated as your main domain and all the work you normally have to do apply for subdomains. Go for one domain and add other contents as a subdomain - such as www.mydomain.com/articles , www.mydomain/videos etc This will help you to increase the number of pages you have on mydomain, it means you will have more pages to get indexed and you subpages will gain benefit from main url SEO. Buying new domains is a waste of money and time these days.

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Technically subdomain is the best approach.

You can also buy other domains to protect your brand, however if you don't have time for SEO on these domains make sure to redirect them using header redirect "301 Moved Permanently". If you have time and resources setup a page with some text and create a back link and work on SEO for these domains as well as your main domain. I did this and now have number of PR2 domains back linking to my main site.

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As the other people commented, here are 2 decisions to take:

  • "subdomain" (videos.example.com) vs. "URL directory" (example.com/videos) for allocate your "thematic sites" or sub-sites.
  • how to manage the "alias" for these sub-sites, as videoexamples.com with an own domain name.

Regarding to first point, i think that there are some proved facts:

  • example.com/videos will increase the SEO relevance of your main web project
  • videos.example.com will be treated as Google more like a "different" site
  • in any case, if you put a different site (CMS) in this thematic site you should do the same SEO work on it independent on the URL structure you choose (content SEO, external SEO, etc..), so think that it's only ONE of several SEO questions, and then is not a so important decision

Regarding the second point:

  • i think that's a good idea to register a "nice marketing" domain, as videoexamples.com, and this shouldn't affect SEO behaviour WHENEVER you avoid to offer DUPLICATE CONTENT to Google.
  • so, in practical terms, i would define the new domain name as an ALIAS of the thematic URL site, and i would configure server (.htaccess in apache server) for redirect 301 to the thematic site.
  • in this way, you could use in your marketing: videoexamples.com, but when the users visit this domain, then inmediatly they woudl be visiting (redirected) example.com/videos. For the bots of Google this would happen in the same way ;)

As a personal comment: you don't must worry about redirections and changes in the URL showed at browser of the users... every day people look less the "address bar" of her browser. In extreme, at the mobile widgets sometimes is difficult to see the URL of the page that you're visiting!

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sub domains have nearly the same relevance to domain name in regards to seo.here is a proff ..why do you think blogger sub domain name do well in there various niches?if it waas me i would not bother to buy the many domain name,that would be extra work!there are many factors which would play in SERPs so why not save that money to use it in other seo tasks.a very important point to seo and serps is that you should have unique content,so instead of being obsessed with buying various domain names i suggest you concentrate on getting relevant unique content,stick to the sub-domain name!

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