URLs With or Without “WWW”: Which is Best?
Recently reader Kathy Frederick asked:
“When I type in “www.junkdrawerblog.com” I notice that the URL field content changes to the URL, minus the WWW. What’s up with that? Is it bad?”
Well Kathy, personally I don’t think that it really matters if you make your URL address with or without the “www“. I see no evidence that it makes any difference with the search engines, unless you happen think it looks esthetically better one way or the other. BUT…
What is really important is that you are consistent with your URL structure.
So why is this is important? Because even the slightest changes in your URL structure can confuse the search engines.
There’s an excellent post written by Matt Cutts from Google on URL Canonicalization with examples and I recommend that your read it.
Here is an example of inconsistent use of a url. Take a look at the following:
http://www.blogbloke.com … and http://www.blogbloke.com/
Can you tell the difference between the two? No?
Take a closer look and you will see that the second url has a trailing slash, and the first one does not. Believe it or not Google sees them as being two different addresses, and it could possibly split your pagerank value.
There was a time when it was said that all roads led to Rome, and if I had to choose which direction to follow I would stick to the road that is the most travelled.
So which way is better Bloke? The vast majority of blogs out there are using ”www“. Heck, even Google uses it so if it’s good enough for them…
Using “www” is also the internet standard for subdomains, but many users are in the habit of keying an address in their browser without “www” to shorten a URL. That is why you should make it work both ways.
So here is how you do it in Wordpress. In your “General Options” menu you will find a box where you can tell Wordpress how to format your urls. You do it like so:
For Blogger Custom Domain users, you need only to follow my directions in my post Blogger Custom Domains: Best Setup for Optimizing your Blog Pagerank!
So now you know.