What is a Subdomain?

Did you know you can use a single domain to create different websites? With a subdomain, users can set up multiple websites running simultaneously on the same domain.

Another way to do this is by using subdirectories. However, subdomains are the recommended choice because of their Search Engine Optimization impact.

What is a Subdomain?

A subdomain is an added part of the domain name, and it helps businesses navigate and categorize their website into multiple sections. Users can create different subdomains on their main domain with ease.

Subdomains come before the domain extension and the primary domain name, and it allows users to set up different websites using one domain. Also, users can use subdomains to launch a forum, support page, or career site, and they can use it to create localized content.

Businesses can use subdomains to set up blogs with different themes, and it allows them to create backlinks to their primary domain to increase authority. Search engines view subdomains as individual sites, thus increasing the chances of users getting more traffic.

How does a Subdomain work?

Everything from mobile phones to websites that connect to the internet has an IP address. The Domain Name System (DNS) is responsible for connecting users to websites using that IP address. It translates a domain name into its accompanying IP address used to locate and load up a website.

Subdomains, just like domains, are website addresses that the DNS translates into IP addresses. A domain consists of two main parts- the top-level domain(TLD) and the second-level domain (SLD), while the subdomain has a second name before the SLD.

Uses of a Subdomain

How can use a subdomain? It’s not just for building websites on an existing domain. So let’s find out.

To create an ecommerce store

Users use subdomains to run an ecommerce store that complements their primary website. Because ecommerce sites require a complicated setup, most companies prefer to have a separate subdomain for them. Besides, users use subdomains to expand their businesses without spending money purchasing additional domains.

For Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

With a subdomain, users can organize their website content to simplify the navigation for end-users. The better the customer experience on their website, the higher it will appear on the search engine page. Plus, subdomains enable users to set up backlinks to their main domain to increase their search engine optimization.

To set up a testing version of a website

Developers often use subdomains to test new updates and plugins before putting them live on the internet. Website designs and layouts evolve as time goes by, and subdomains enable users to test their new content structure before publishing on their leading site.

To target a variety of audiences

Businesses use subdomains to target different audiences — this way, they can get their products or services to the right people. For example, a furniture business can use different subdomain URLs to focus on different types of customers.

To develop a mobile version of their website

Most businesses use subdomains to create mobile-compatible versions of their website. This mobile site version enables companies to please their mobile audiences and increase their reach.

To create a blog or publish alternate content

Subdomains enable users to create any blog while associating it with their main domain. They also help users who want to publish ideas separate from what their website represents.

How to Create a Subdomain

A domain is needed to set up any subdomain, and once users purchase a domain, they have the rights for the subdomain. With the ScalaHosting platform, users can create a subdomain with ease.

Usually, your hosting account comes with a control panel that allows you to create a subdomain. The steps vary from management platform to management platform, but they should generally follow the same structure. Here’s how to do it on ScalaHosting’s SPanel VPS solutions:

  1. Log into SPanel’s User Interface and click the Subdomains icon.
    The default login URL is https://yourdomain.com/spanel (make sure you substitute yourdomain.com for your actual domain). The Subdomains icon is located on SPanel’s homepage.
  1. Enter a valid subdomain.
    You will see a drop-down menu with all the domains added to your account. You first need to pick the parent domain and then enter a valid subdomain. Subdomains can consist of letters, numbers, and hyphens.
  1. Select a document root and save the changes.
    Finally, you’ll need to select the folder for the files accessible under the subdomain (the document root). By default, SPanel is designed to create a folder inside your account’s home directory, but you can choose a custom one using the field below the subdomain. When you’re ready, click the Create Subdomain button.

Subdomain Vs. Subdirectory

Subdomains and subdirectories both achieve the same end-goal — setting up multiple websites within a single domain. However, search engines view both of them differently– they view a subdomain as a different website and view subdirectories as files under the main domain.

Small businesses with limited resources can opt for subdirectories. On the other hand, companies with resources can use subdomains for multiple uses.  ScalaHosting offers users free DNS management, Email forwarding, and Domain forwarding when they register their domain names.

How To Point a Domain Name To a Web Hosting Provider

What is a Subdomain?, Subdomain Vs. Subdirectory

Was this helpful?

What’s your goal today?

1. Find the right Managed VPS solution

If you’re looking for industry-leading speed, ease of use and reliability Try ScalaHosting with an unconditional money-back guarantee.

2. Make your website lighting fast

We guarantee to make your WordPress site load in less than 2 seconds on a managed VPS with ScalaHosting or give your money back. Fill out the form, and we’ll be in touch.

Please enter a valid name
Please enter a valid website
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

3. Streamline your clients’ hosting experience

If you’re a web studio or development agency hosting more than 30 websites, schedule a call with Vlad, our co-founder and CTO, and see how we can deliver unmatched value to both your business and your clients.


Need a custom cluster or professional advice?

Book a meeting and get a free 30-minute consultation with Vlad, co-founder & CTO of Scala Hosting, who will help you select, design and build the right solution - from a single data center cluster to a multi-region & multi-datacenter high availability cluster with hundreds of servers.

Book a free consultation

4. Learn how to grow your website in 2024

An all-star team of SEO and web influencers are sharing their secret knowledge for the first time in years. Learn about the future of SEO, Web Design best practices and the secrets to getting the foundation for your website to thrive. Watch the exclusive webinar.

An Exclusive Insiders Look Behind The SEO and Web Development Curtain


Working in the web hosting industry for over 13 years, Rado has inevitably got some insight into the industry. A digital marketer by education, Rado is always putting himself in the client's shoes, trying to see what's best for THEM first. A man of the fine detail, you can often find him spending 10+ minutes wondering over a missing comma or slightly skewed design.