The Case for Using Multiple Domains in SEO


As a new business owner, it’s tempting to limit your focus as much as possible. Instead of hiring 100 new people to train immediately, you can focus on a few and gradually expand as you get more comfortable. Instead of reaching out to multiple different target audiences, you can focus on one market segment and specialize in them before expanding.

Similarly, most entrepreneurs are motivated to focus exclusively on one domain when building their business. But in many ways, it’s better to rely on multiple domains.

How does this play out? That’s up to you. There are many ways to utilize multiple domains in service to your primary business. You could set up separate domains to target different audiences simultaneously. You could use throwaway domains to market specific pieces of content. You can even set up multiple domains with slightly different content angles that complement each other and send traffic back and forth.

In any case, juggling multiple domains is much easier than it sounds and it could be exactly what your brand needs to become competitively dominant – even in your earliest stages of development.

The Benefits of Multiple Domains for Your Business

These are some of the best benefits of using multiple domains for advancing your business:

  • Convenient modern management. You might think that adding more domains to your business’s portfolio will overload or overcomplicate your strategy. But thanks to modern tools like WordPress Multisite, it’s easier than ever to manage domains in one centralized location. With one dashboard, you can keep an eye on several domains simultaneously – and coordinate your strategies between them.
  • Multiple potential streams of traffic. Creating multiple domains means you’ll be creating multiple routes for traffic to ultimately get to your main site, if you choose to use your additional domains this way. for example, you can create a separate marketing strategy for each domain in your portfolio, generating a flourishing stream of traffic for each individual. You can then use interlinking strategies to send traffic between those sites, providing a mutual benefit for each site in your network.
  • Risk diversification. Just like diversifying a portfolio, holding multiple domains is also a form of risk diversification. If all of your content, all of your traffic, and all of your reputation are contingent on one domain staying alive, you’re exposing your business to way too much risk. If your primary brand starts to face reputational issues, if your domain is blacklisted, or some other threat interferes with your ability to run the business, your other domains can serve as a backup – and a way to still capitalize on your existing audience. Obviously, you want all of your domains to survive for as long as possible, but it never hurts to have a thorough and multilayered backup plan.
  • Capitalization on type-in ​​traffic. Don’t underestimate the power of type-in ​​traffic, the traffic generated when people manually type out the name of your domain. Acquiring multiple different domains is a great way to capitalize on different types of type-in ​​traffic. You can purchase domain names that are short and easy to remember, or ones that are targeted to very specific audiences; from there, you’ll have an easy time generating direct traffic.
  • Landing pages and niche appeal. Segmenting your strategy across multiple domains can also help you create more unique landing pages and cater to niche audiences. Rather than serving a generic audience or all of your audience segments at once with a single site, you can create hyper specialized content for your most lucrative audience segments.
  • SEO benefits. Multiple domains can be beneficial for your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy as well. Assuming you’re supporting all of them with a valid content creation and link building strategy, each domain will gradually generate higher authority on its own. Your interlinking strategy will allow you to mutually support each domain’s authority, generate more traffic, and gain more engagement from each visitor. The sum total of these effects will increase the authority of your primary domain, allowing you to rank higher in search engines.
  • Complementary effects. You can use multiple domains to execute complementary strategies and earn complementary benefits. For example, you can use one domain to create high-risk, high-reward assets, while a secondary domain is more cautious and conservative.
  • Experimentation and learning. You can also experiment with almost everything, from web design to marketing, and do it safely with multiple domains. You can take one of your lower performing domains and try and experimental, risky strategy with it; if the strategy doesn’t work out, you’re not out much. If this strategy does work, you can learn from it and apply it to your more valuable domains with a much better understanding of its risk profile.

Tips for Using Multiple Domains for Your Business

Of course, there are many ways to fail while using multiple domains. You could stretch yourself thin, neglecting your main domain and alienating your audience. You could overspend, compromising your ROI. And some of your domains may be total failures.

But these tips will help you make the most of the multiple domains you use in support of your main business.

  • Start small. You don’t need to treat every domain like a new business, nor do you need 400 domains to start. It’s usually better to start small. Acquire one or two additional domains and focus on improving them before you move on. This way, you’ll end up with much higher-quality domains at the beginning of your strategy, and you’ll stand to lose less when you make mistakes. You can always expand more aggressively in the future.
  • Diversify your holdings. Consider diversifying your holdings, the same way you would diversify an investment portfolio to minimize risk. Acquire a mix of long domains and short domains, and cheap and expensive domains. Generally speaking, concise and expensive domains tend to be highly competitive but highly valuable, while their opposites require very little in the way of initial investment, but also have a lower prospective payoff. It’s ideal to build a network with many types of domains, so you can fully realize the strengths and weaknesses of each one.
  • Look for great deals. Keep an eye out for extraordinary deals on domains – SEO-friendly, concise domains that are potentially appealing to unique audiences, yet are still only selling for a few bucks each. This is especially powerful if you’re trying to market to a small, niche audience. There won’t be much competition, so prices will be absurdly low, yet you can still appeal with high relevance to a loyal audience.
  • Always create unique content. Every domain in your portfolio needs to have unique content. It’s not enough to do you superficially copy the content from one site onto a new one, nor is it a good idea to stock up on unoriginal filler content for its own sake. The best way to grow a domain from scratch is with the help of high-quality content marketing, and that means drawing up an archive of original work for each domain.
  • Cull the underperformers. Pay attention to how all your domains are performing, and don’t be afraid to cull the underperformers. If a domain isn’t providing the stream of traffic that you wanted, or if its performance metrics continually decline, it may be best to cut your losses and sell it to the highest bidder.
  • Boost your best domains. Conversely, look for the domains that are performing the best and analyze them so that you can learn from the strategies supporting them. Is there a specific type of content you’re creating here that isn’t present elsewhere? Are there specific tactics making this especially effective?

There’s no rule that says you have to have multiple domains serving your business objectives. But it’s becoming increasingly popular, which means it’s transforming into a major competitive threat. In this light, relying on multiple domains is a defensive strategy as much as an aggressive, expansionist one. In any case, when used properly, managing multiple domains can increase the amount of traffic you generate, improve your brand visibility, and ultimately increase your chances of business success.

Nate Nead

Nate Nead

Nate Nead is the CEO & Managing Member of Nead, LLC, a consulting company that provides strategic advisory services across multiple disciplines including finance, marketing and software development. For over a decade Nate had provided strategic guidance on M&A, capital procurement, technology and marketing solutions for some of the most well-known online brands. He and his team advise Fortune 500 and SMB clients alike. The team is based in Seattle, Washington; El Paso, Texas and West Palm Beach, Florida.


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