Most of us don’t know that the two format of domain, i.e. www. and non-www. is treated as different. Your website will be ranked on the basis of your preferred domain. In this article, we will cover all about the domain: What is domain?, Is it Necessary to Choose one or the Other (www or non-www) for site? How to Setup Preferred Domain in Webmaster Tools?

Domain Names:

A URL could be broken down in three parts. Have a look:

  • http:// :- The Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is an application protocol for distributed, collaborative, and hypermedia information systems. HTTP is the foundation of data communication for the World Wide Web. Hypertext is structured text that uses logical links (hyperlinks) between nodes containing text.
  • :- This is the domain name, we will talk further in this article. A domain name is an identification string that defines a realm of administrative autonomy, authority or control within the Internet.
  • How-tos :- This is nothing but the extension to specify the address of the page we want to visit.

Is it Necessary to Choose one or the Other (www or non-www) for site?

  • Yes

Canonical Name: The official domain is called the canonical name. All your absolute links should use this canonical name.

The choice among the preferred domain is totally upon you, but it is strongly suggested to choose one. The choice of the preferred website is yours, but if you have made your mind to choose one stick with it. By doing so, this make your website more consistent to our users and to the search engines.

Set your preferred domain (www or non-www)

Basically, preferred domain is the domain version that you want to use with your website in the search query. Preferred domain is the domain which would be helpful for the indexing of our web pages. You can direct our audience to our site by any preferred domain (www or non-www), but it is my strong suggestion to choose any one.

On the off chance that you see a message that your site is not filed, it might be on account of it is filed under an alternate area. For instance, in the event that you get a message that is not listed, ensure that you’ve additionally included to your record (or the other way around), and check the information for that site.

Once you have done with selecting the preferred domain. Each time the crawler from any search engine to crawl your website. The crawlers will crawl, considering this preferred domain and the indexing will be done with the preferred domain. Let’s take an instance, suppose you have selected preferred domain as But the crawler finds the link as, it will be considered as By default, the www and non-www versions of the domain is treated differently.

How to Setup Preferred Domain in Webmaster Tools

Step: Specify a Preferred Domain

  1. On the Search Console Home page, click the site you want.
  2. Click the gear icon then click Site Settings.How to update Preferred Domain in Webmaster Tools
  3. In the Preferred domain section, select the option you want.

It is not a lightning fast process and needs some time to be reflected.

You may need to verify ownership of both the www and non-www versions of your domain. Because setting a preferred domain impacts both crawling and indexing, we need to ensure that you own both versions. Typically, both versions point to the same physical location, but this is not always the case. Generally, once you have verified one version of the domain, we can easily verify the other using the original verification method. However, if you’ve removed the file, meta tag, or DNS record, you’ll need to repeat the verification steps.