SEO and domains

Domain names are often less human readable than expected since the developer usually tries to make it as short as possible.

Register a number of domain names for the same project

Any registrar worth their salt will charge between 7 and 15 euros per domain name. The developer can suggest 2 domain names to his customer :

  • one easy-to-remember domain name for quick access (to be printed on visiting cards, advertisements,…). This domain name often contains abbreviations, is an acronym,…
  • and another one containing relevant keywords regarding the activity related to the web site.

If several domain names point to the same website, be sure to change your Apache .htaccess file to auto-redirect all your domain names to the same principal domain.

Domain redirect example

Developers regularly register 2 domain names : one with and the second with no www. Imagine the 2 following domains : and

Both should point to the same principal domain (i.e.

Change your .htaccess file with the following lines :

Options +FollowSymlinks -MultiViews
#ErrorDocument 404 /seo/404.php
RewriteEngine on
rewritecond %{http_host} ^ [nc]
rewriterule ^(.*)$$1 [r=301,nc]

Options +FollowSymlinks -MultiViews #Line 1 tells Apache to follow symbolic links

RewriteEngine on #Line 2 activates Apache Rewrite Engine (mod_rewrite module)

rewritecond %{http_host} ^ [nc] #Line 3 rewrite condition checks if rewrite rule is to be applied => if http_host (current host name) is [NC] flag is used to make the condition case insensitive

rewriterule ^(.*)$$1 [r=301,nc] #Line4 Apache sends a 301 redirect header to The rewrite rule ensures the path is sent as well with regex (.*) that is sent to thanks to the variable $1

Time matters

A quick Whois lookup tells the developer if the requested domain name is available or not. Registering a domain name can be done for one year or more. This time criteria is used in the Google algorithm for page ranking since a domain name that will last longer will be considered to be more trustworthy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>