I am setting up a multitenant application using MVC5. I have figured out most of the implementation and deployment details. However, I have some questions around SEO.

Basically, multitenancy means that I end up with different customers where each of them will have their own subdomain domain.

So if my site is called city.com then I could have:

  • washington.city.com
  • melbourne.city.com
  • etc..

Now the question I have is how do I get subdomains to be treated like individual domains and can be crawled by search engines?

Please note that this is not a programming question, just need some directions regarding using subdomains and SEO.

  • As per our comments (no longer needed), I edited the question so it could be reopened. Feel free to edit it further if need be. In short, subdomains are treated separately from domains in terms of crawling, in fact each URL that can be crawled and indexed will be. All you have to do is make sure the subdomains can be crawled (i.e., crawlers aren't being blocked with server headers, robots.txt,, noindex tags, etc...) and they should all be crawled and indexed. You can always use Fetch as Google in Google Search Console to see if there's any crawl errors.
    – dan
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 7:33
  • Thank you so much Dan. So one more thing. I just found a URL that was explaining how to add a sitemap.xml. So is the purpose of sitemap for the search engine know about the details of the site? The URL for anyone else who is interested is: github.com/maartenba/MvcSiteMapProvider/wiki/…
    – b3hdad
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 7:38
  • No problem. The purpose of a sitemap is really to help search engines find links they normally wouldn't be able to, or to provide additional information about those links (e.g., modification date, crawl rate, etc...). If you don't link to any of the URLs either internally or externally, then a sitemap is probably a good idea. If the search engine can find these links somewhere, or they'll be submitted individually in Google Search Console for example, then you really don't need to bother with creating individual sitemaps for each subdomain.
    – dan
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 7:44
  • You can also kick-start crawling for any sudomain/URL by using Fetch as Google, so if there's not that many subdomains, that might be a good way to go so you can see the results and if there's any crawl errors.
    – dan
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 7:45
  • So in that case I will have to use the site map. This is because with ASP/MVC when the request hits my server say client1.site.com, then my server constructs the page for client1 and serves it. So in order for the search engine to know there is such a thing as client1.site.com or client2.site.com somehow I have to inform it. Which I am assuming it is through the site map.
    – b3hdad
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 8:18

1 Answer 1


Google tends to treat subdomains differently than directories in that subdomains will often be considered individual sites. But this is not always the case. Whether Google determines a subdomain to be the same site as its main domain and other subdomains is likely based on an algorithmic process of association.

The closer the subdomain sites are to the other sites in terms of link profile, design and content, the more likely Google is to determine it as the same site.

If your subdomains have different content, different design and link profiles, and even different IP addresses, the more likely they appear to be individual sites.

If your main site links to all of your subdomains, the link association is a strong isgnal that your subdomains are affiliated with your main domain. You might choose to set any links to your subdomains as NOFOLLOW.

Also, if you allow your clients to add their subdomains to their own search console, this certainly signals separate ownership and sites. This will mean that you will have to give them the ability to verify the ownership of the subdomain. You can do this by giving them the ability to upload their own HTML record provided by search console.

  • Ok I see what you mean. I think I have got enough info to make decisions now. Michael and Dan thank you very much for the answers. Looks like I can only tick the answers sections but both have been very helpful. Cheers.
    – b3hdad
    Commented Apr 16, 2018 at 4:26

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