Consolidate Your Website Traffic In A Single Domain – SEO Rule 1
According to Google® a “naked domain” is a Domain Name without its “www” prefix (for instance “domainshotdeals.com” would be the naked version of “www.domainshotdeals.com” (which would be the “non-naked” version of the Website).
There’s a possibility that Search Engines measure traffic going to the naked version of your Domain Name (“domainshotdeals.com”) and traffic going to the non-naked version of your Domain Name (“www.domainshotdeals.com”) as traffic belonging to two different Websites.
Even more, for some of its applications used in combination with your Domain Name, Google® only allows the use of the non-naked version of your Website (“www.domainshotdeals.com”).
More importantly, Google® itself redirects its own name to the non-naked version (i.e. If you type in google.com in your browser it will redirect to “www.google.com”).
It means that if you are not redirecting your naked domain to your non-naked domain, your real traffic may be underestimated by Search Engines and Website Traffic Evaluation tools.
The simplest way to redirect the naked version of your Domain to its non-naked version is by using the .htaccess file.
Although .htaccess is only a file, it can change settings on the servers and allow you to do many different things, the most popular being able to have your own custom 404 error pages. .htaccess isn’t difficult to use and is really just made up of a few simple instructions in a text file.
You may be wondering what .htaccess can do, or you may have read about some of its uses but don’t realise how many things you can actually do with it.
There is a huge range of things .htaccess can do including: domain redirection, password protecting folders, redirecting users automatically, custom error pages, changing your file extensions, banning users with certian IP addresses, only allowing users with certain IP addresses, stopping directory listings and using a different file as the index file.
Creating a .htaccess file may cause you a few problems. Writing the file is easy, you just need enter the appropriate code into a text editor (like notepad). You may run into problems with saving the file. Because .htaccess is a strange file name (the file actually has no name but a 8 letter file extension) it may not be accepted on certain systems (e.g. Windows 3.1). With most operating systems, though, all you need to do is to save the file by entering the name as:
(including the quotes). If this doesn’t work, you will need to name it something else (e.g. htaccess.txt) and then upload it to the server. Once you have uploaded the file you can then rename it using an FTP program.
Below is the .htacces file that redirects permanently the naked “domainshotdeals.com” to the non-naked “www.domainshotdeals.com”: