I'm always a bit confused about hreflang and domain. I have the following in mind.

Current situation:
examp.eu (english) hreflang="en"
examp.be (dutch) hreflang="nl-be" hreflang="nl-nl"

Now I bought examp.nl Sould I redirect the examp.nl to the examp.be or split the site. Note NL and BE are both dutch and will be identical or near identical.

So the result would be:  
examp.eu (english)
examp.nl (dutch) hreflang="nl-nl"
examp.be (dutch) hreflang="nl-be"

Will my .be which is most important suffer from duplicated content on .nl and .be. Or are they seprated because the .nl .be

And should I set the canonical to the .be or don't mind canonical for that?

thx in advance!

3 Answers 3


Will my .be which is most important suffer from duplicated content on .nl and .be.

Theoretically and 95% practically no. Because your hreflang setup is absolutely correct.

But, for the remaining 5%, i personally experienced cases, where Google deindexed one of such two domains, because "they were too similar". If you have a hard factors, why you must run two domains (like different shopping or delivering circumstances), you should be on secure side.

In case of content projects (no e-commerce - only info), i would consider to merge everything to the single domain.


The answer depends mostly on whether the sites are identical or not. You write identical or near identical, and that is a bit unclear. If the .be and .nl sites are identical, then you should combine them into one (redirects, canonicals or both, it accomplishes the same thing from a seo-perspective). You will need to use hreflang either way, seeing as you have an english site too.

If the content on .nl and .be is varied, then hreflang alone is sufficient.

If only a part of the site, eg. certain pages, are identical then it would be good to mark those pages as canonical, referencing the .be site.


Well near identicaly. The difrences would be : On .be we are location in city x on .nl we are located near Brussels and only x amount time from Amsterdam

Just some marketing stuff.

Why I would want a .nl and a .be Somebody of netherland would not click on .be domain as but might concider a .nl domain.

And yest the website is an information content site.

My understanding from the reply's is that its not so wise to do so. I hoped that google would rank them seperatly and not mark a dubble content.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.