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What is the difference between a URL, Domain, Subdomain, Hostname etc.?

The abbreviation “URL” is short for “Uniform Resource Locator” and is commonly used to refer to a website or internet-address, while the actually intended goal is usually a directory or a specific path.

The structure and components of a URL

A URL is usually made up of several parts. To understand the structure and the components, we will dismantle the following example URL:

Aufbau und die Bestandteile einer URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhcwLyyEjOA
Structure and components of the URL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhcwLyyEjOA
  1. The Protocol in use – in this case: HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) There are also other protocols like HTTPS, FTP and so on.
  2. The Host or Hostname: www.youtube.com
  3. The Subdomain: www.
  4. The domain name (Domain): youtube.com
  5. The Top-Level-Domain (a web-address suffix): .com (also known by the shorthand TLD)
  6. The Path: /watch A path will usually refer to a file or folder (directory) on the webserver (for example “/folder/file.html”)
  7. Parameter and value: v (Parameter), QhcwLyyEjOA (Parameter value) Parameters are initialised by the “?” inside the URL.
    In our example, the parameter name is “v” and its value is “QhcwLyyEjOA” (Parameter name and Parameter value always have the same structure: Parametername=Parametervalue)

General language use

If we talk about a URL, we usually mean the concrete path to a directory (http://www.domain.com/a-directory/) or a file (http://www.domain.com/documents/study.pdf) on a website.

It is, of course, not completely wrong to talk about a URL and simply mean the host- or domain name of a website, but we should try to use the correct terminology.

Use the SISTRIX Toolbox for your evaluations

The SISTRIX Toolbox analyses and calculates all key values not only on a root domain level, but also for specific host names, directories, and URLs or paths.

Using the searchbar in the SISTRIX Toolbox, you can target and analyse specific host names, directories, URLs, or paths
Using the searchbar in the SISTRIX Toolbox, you can target and analyse specific host names, directories, URLs, or paths

When you want to evaluate urls or directories, it is important to type-in the entire path into the search bar, including the protocol.

This makes the SISTRIX Toolbox the first SEO-Tool where the database architecture was specifically designed to make these unique detailed evaluations possible.

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