WWW vs Non-WWW URL: Which is better?

WWW vs Non-WWW

Posted on February 14, 2020

In website building, webmasters always try to find the difference between WWW and non-WWW URL. People always try to find out which one is better to use. But does it really matter in SEO? Does it affect your ranking in the search result page? These questions are the reasons why we created this blog post.

WWW is a prefix used on the URL which stands for World Wide Web.  In the early days of the internet, all website URLs started with www, which was just another sub-domain. Over time, people became accustomed to typing the website named without www when they want to go to a certain website.

Webmasters notice this trend, and some of them decided to get rid of www prefix on the URL.

WWW and non-WWW URLs don’t that have that much difference when we talk about practical use. However, when it comes to technical perspective one of these two is more flexible and can give more control over another. Let’s find out which is it.

Understanding WWW URLs

WWW has been the standard way to begin a website URL for so many years. This is when the first advantage of WWW URLs comes.  The www URLs were very popular for so many years, and using that prefix may help your site appear authentic to some users.

Who doesn’t want that, right? Well, that’s really a shallow reason to choose www URLs. That’s true but www URLs can also do some cool things that non-www URLs can’t.

WWW URLs allow you to set cookies for your specific www-subdomain. Cookies get passed in a hierarchical way.  So, if you set cookies to your domain. It will pass down to all your subdomains.

The good thing about www URLs is that you can restrict your cookies to your root domains. In this way, you no cookies will pass down to other subdomains such as img.domain.com or static.domain.com. If your website has many subdomains, then the www URL is surely an ideal choice for you.

Another benefit of using a www URL is that it is flexible when it comes to DNS. With www subdomains, you can set up Content Delivery Networks (CDN) more easily.

Non-WWW URLs: Pros and Cons

All the functions above cannot be done by Non-WWW URLs.  If you use non-www URLs, you can’t restrict cookies to passed down to all sub-domains. It will be harder for you to get CDN work.

Setting aside those functions, there are also some benefits you can get from non-www URLs.

Using non-www URLs will get you a shorter domain. In SEO perspective, the shorter domain has more chance of ranking high in search engine result page. You can also say, that non-www URLs are easier to remember compared to www URLs.

If you also use non-www URLs, you will save not only the spaces for the four characters but also bandwidth and 4 bytes of data.

Verdict: which one to choose

As you can see both WWW and Non-WWW URLs have both advantages and disadvantages. There is no big difference between the two. In addition to this, it doesn’t directly affect your ranking in the search result page. Thus, there is no better method. It’s more about your preference.

The more important part is that when you choose a version, you should be consistent for your entire site and redirect all others to that one.

However, if you have a plan of expanding your site, we suggest using the WWW version because of its inherent functions.

The thing here is that everything is updating on the web. Maybe someday the web will probably adapt to using non-www URLs. But that doesn’t the case at present, so you have to rely on this old protocol.