Should you start your blog with a domain or subdomain?

Educators and researchers should have a blog or website besides their research journals. This helps them disseminate their knowledge further and reach a vast audience.

To get a website up and running we need to get a domain or subdomain. For some purposes, a domain is necessary while for some purposes a subdomain is just enough. Here is what you need to know to decide the type of domain that you would need to start with.

What is a domain?

Let’s take Google as an example. They have a domain and dozens of subdomains. For Google, their main domain is google.com. That is their top-level domain (TLD). If you wish to visit Google, you will type google.com in the address bar of your browser. In that sense, if you want a domain, like example.com, you have to buy it. Top-level domains are not for free. There are a lot of domain sellers from whom you can buy domains. We will go through that later on in the course, inshaAllah.

What is a subdomain?

Subdomains are second-level domains (SLD), which will usually add a prefix to the top-level domain, or the main domain. That is why they are called second-level domains. So, a subdomain of google.com can be translate.google.com, meet.google.com, docs.google.com, etc. If you want to continue with a second-level domain, they are available for free in most cases. For example, you can get a subdomain from WordPress like yourname.wordpress.com.

Do you need a domain?

Now that you know the difference between a domain and a subdomain, which will suit your needs? Do you have to go for a domain or a subdomain? Why a domain when subdomains are free? Well, it depends on your goal. If you want to share class materials or just blog about your daily journey, then just a subdomain will do the job for you. On the other hand, if you want to monetize with your personal academic website, you have to go for a top-level domain. In either case, if you want to keep it in your power so that you own it, you have to get a domain. Subdomains are more like renting a place someone else owns. Hence the owner name appears whenever your “rented” subdomain is called. In addition, you can’t modify it as you want. Now you can decide if you need a domain or a subdomain. If still, it’s hard for you, you can go for a subdomain, and later on move to a domain, inshaAllah.

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