Having one domain registered for your website is great, but why not have two, three, or even five? You might be asking yourself ‘why?’ – in this blog post I will explain the various reasons this could be extremely helpful to your business. First, the even more common and simple question is: can a website actually have multiple domain names? The answer is yes, but there are some factors to consider which can play a role in making the decision to acquire alternative domains, many of which can influence both your brand recognition and online discoverability. Continue reading to learn the best practices for using multiple domains for just one website.
Why Use Multiple Domains For Your Website
There are several great reasons why an individual, business, brand, or organization might consider using multiple domains for their website, with many of the reasons tied to the goal of what these alternative domains are trying to accomplish. Below are some broader, common uses for these domains.
Catching Similarities – For some users, navigating around the internet can sometimes be tricky. Malicious groups or even brand competitors can take advantage of this by setting up domains that look and sound exactly like yours, often in an attempt to capture some of your audience that isn’t diligent or paying much attention. This experience is occasionally setup nefariously to capture sensitive user data through a brand’s recognition. This experience is obviously not a very good one for the end user, and although it isn’t connected directly to the original brand, it can negatively impact a customers perception of it. To prevent this, larger companies register specific domains to prevent abuse. Consider registering common spelling errors users have with your brand or similar sounding names, with the hope of assisting users with getting to the correct destination.
Rebranding Your Online Presence – Drastic changes happen with brands; whether it be splitting services, launching a new product, or completely shift gears to a new online identity. Regardless of the reasoning behind it, one or more domain names are likely required at some point as part of the transition. Through this process, it’s important that your audience experiences no difficulties finding you online – accessibility is crucial to capitalize on opportunities. No matter what type of new brand or branding shift you’re considering, make sure to keep hold of your previous domain name and point it to your new domain to guide users to the website which they are expecting to arrive at.
Setting Up Multiple Domains
Now that I’ve covered some of the “whys,” let’s briefly discuss the “how” part. Luckily, this part is pretty straightforward if you’re just pointing one domain to another. If this is the case, you will want to use domain forwarding at your domain registrar. Domain forwarding will redirect any visitors landing on one domain directly to another designated domain name. I previously wrote an article with some simple instructions on how to forward a domain with GoDaddy so if your domains are registered there you can follow the steps on that page. This can be done for all the domains you wish to have point to your primary website, meaning you can have as many domains as you want pointed towards your website!
Utilizing multiple domains for one website can be a smart strategy to expand beyond your initial domain name or open new opportunities for your audience to discover your brand. That being said, it requires time to strategize not only what the domain name will be and what you will do with it, but also spending the time investigating the domains themselves to ensure that you mitigate the risks when that domain becomes connected to your online presence. This becomes even more important the larger the brand that you have, so consider the outcome and choose the right domains to add to your brand repertoire.