WWW vs non-WWW – Which is Better For WordPress SEO?

www vs non-www

Many people are not sure about the difference or a WWW and non-WWW websites. And most of the time, for the sake of easiness, people will skip the www when they are entering the URL. But then, what’s the difference between www vs non-www in site URLs?

And one of the things many website owners are asking is which is better for SEO. Should they be focusing on the WWW or non-WWW URL? And should they change the URL for this? 

In short, there is no difference from the SEO standpoint. But you should choose one and focus on that. And today, we will explain the difference between www vs non-www and which one is better for WordPress SEO.

The Difference between www and non-www URLs

WWW vs non-WWW

While www and non-www URLs may appear to be the same, they are technically different. When you type a URL into a web browser, the browser needs to know the IP address of the server where the website is located. 

The IP address is a numerical address that is used to identify devices on the internet. When a web browser requests a URL, it sends a request to a DNS server to translate the domain name into an IP address. 

If the website uses a www URL, the DNS server will return the IP address associated with the www subdomain. If the website uses a non-www URL, the DNS server will return the IP address associated with the root domain.

In practical terms, this means that www and non-www URLs can have different IP addresses, which can impact website performance and security. For example, a website that uses a non-www URL may have a different SSL certificate than the same website that uses a www URL. This can impact the security of the website and its visitors.

Read more about WordPress SEO tips here

Which is Better for SEO

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In terms of SEO, there is not much difference using WWW or non-WWW URLs. It all depends on your preference and focus to work on your SEO. 

However, if you need a suggestion, we would suggest going with the non-WWW URL. This is because most people will ignore the WWW when they type in the search bar of their browser. 

What’s more important is that after making the decision, you don’t change it. This is because if you change your URL, search engines will treat it as another one. 

If you are unsure about this, try to run an SEO test on both your WWW and non-WWW URLs. You will find out that both are having different numbers of backlinks, ranked keywords, and traffics. 

Read more about WordPress SEO tips here

Setting a Canonical URL for SEO

WWW vs non-WWW

A canonical URL is the preferred URL of a webpage that is chosen by search engines as the primary URL to index and display in search results.

In simple terms, it helps to resolve the issue of duplicate content on a website, which can arise when multiple URLs lead to the same page. This can happen due to variations in URLs such as adding parameters, using different capitalization or using both HTTP and HTTPS versions. Search engines may interpret these variations as separate pages, resulting in a dilution of search engine rankings.

Setting a canonical URL tells search engines which version of the page you want them to index. This helps them crawl your site more efficiently and prevents duplicate content issues.

As this is so important for the search engine to rank your page, most WordPress SEO plugin lets you set it up easily. 

Yoast SEO for example is a plugin that helps you optimize your website for search engines. You can set the canonical URL at the bottom of each page or post under the Yoast SEO section. Expand the “Advanced” section and you will see the field for you to input your canonical URL for that page. This will tell search engines which version you prefer.

It is worth noting that canonical tags are your last line of defence for telling search engines which version of your website to index. Canonical tags are also helpful for duplicate content that exists for reasons other than having both www and non-www versions of your website.

Final Thoughts – WWW vs non-WWW – Which is Better For WordPress SEO?

Choosing to use www vs. non-www in your URL solely depends on your preference. There is no obvious difference in the standpoint of SEO.

However, SEO is an important consideration for any website owner. You should choose one and stay with it. Changing the URL might affect your SEO ranking as both WWW and non-WWW websites are treated as individual websites.

Read more about WordPress SEO tips here

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