SEO and dividing part of website (e-shop, forum and website itself)


i’m facing an interesting challenge redeveloping a website that includes the website itself, a forum and an e-shop.
Basically i was thinking to develop those parts into 3 phases and thus to be independent of each other.

so the website itself will be stored under main domain (ex:, while forums will be stored under a subdomain ( and e-shop as another subdomain (

i would like to know if this is a problem for a good SEO ?
or is it much more better to have everything under 1 “roof” (main site), (forums) and (eshop) ?

Please detail your answer in order to help me to understand.
thx a lot.

I would put them in folders. Sub domains are considered to be separate websites and therefore do not give seo benifits to the main domain.

Subfolders as opposed to subdomains is a simpler route in general.
but AFAIK if we have:
main website stored in /public_html directory (
forums web part stored in /public_html/_sub/forums ( >> subdomain but also a subdirectory of website root
eshop web part stored in /public_html/_sub/eshop ( >> subdomain but also a subdirectory of website root

so in this case it is the worst solution ?
because this is how works my webhosting provider :frowning:

[font=verdana]I would always go for sub-directories rather than sub-domains.

In terms of SEO, I really don’t think there is a whole lot of difference, and I’m sure that Google is more than smart enough to figure out when two sub-domains are actually part of the same site and when they aren’t.

No, the reason for using sub-directories rather than sub-domains is to make it easy for people. If you have sub-directories then it doesn’t (or shouldn’t) matter whether they type in [noparse] or But if you have sub-domains, it almost certainly will matter whether they type or[/noparse] – in the latter case, it won’t work. But sure as eggs is eggs, that’s what they will type. If I’m asking someone to type a web address in, I reckon that more than half the time they start by putting in www even when I haven’t told them to.[/font]

I guess this depends on what platform you’re using for e-commerce? If you’re using Wordpress with an e-commerce plugin then you’ll be able to keep everything under one roof. If you’re using Shopify then you’ll be able to keep the main site and the shop together, but you’ll have to deploy the forums on a sub-domain. As for subdomains vs. subdirectories, they’re both considered the same these days, so it comes down to what is easier for you. Here’s Matt Cutts talking about it:

What platform will you use for e-commerce functionality?