Lee Odden

Be Geek Cool and Lose the WWW

Lee Odden     Online Marketing, Rant

Something I’ve been noticing the past few months is an increasing number of web sites that do not use www. Either this is a trend that’s full force and I’ve missed it (busy with SEO clients) or it’s a trend picking up steam. Or maybe it’s a techie geek sort of thing as most of the sites I’ve noticed are a bit geeky. And they would take that designation as a compliment I think.

First I noticed Glen Stansberry’s excellent blog was shortened to just lifedev.net. Then Thomas aka TwisterMC’s new blog, bloggerdesign.com did the same thing.  And just today I noticed Greg Hartnett (greghartnett.com) of BOTW has just said no to the www. It’s not just these sites though, I’ve noticed many others too.

Maybe it’s just a sort of geekish homeage to Slashdot, which I don’t think has ever used a www.

I guess there really isn’t a practical reason for using www. In fact there never has. You certainly don’t need it to surf the world wide web. Speaking of which, here’s a copy of the very first web page.

What’s also interesting is that Google Webmaster Central now has a new preferred domain tool that lets you designate a www or non-www preference for your domain. The tool was meant to help webmasters avoid the www and non-www urls being recognized as duplicate web sites. But I suppose it would also make it easier to lose the www.

So if you want to shorten your url and make it stand out from the crowd, then maybe you can lose the www. And be cool in a geeky sort of way.

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Lee Odden About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on B2B marketing topics including content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely running, traveling or cooking up something new.


  1. I used to do this back in 1998 to be cool. At that point a lot of people just couldn’t imagine how you could pull such a thing off on the www without the www.

    Now days I’ve stuck with www. Simply because Google used to not understand that with or with out “www” was actually the same place. The key is to be consistent, but you can’t control how people link.

    Apparently now this problem is fixed, so everyone can (maybe) stop using those .htaccess redirects.

  2. I suppose if more sites started using the non-www it would make anything using a sub-domain stand out. But I doubt that will happen any time soon. There’s too much brand investment in the www version.

  3. Thanks for the link Lee! Yeah, I really only left out the www because I think it kind of clutters a domain. It’s not realy needed (yay .htaccess!), and I think that people might remember it a little better if there’s not a www in front to muck things up. So, minimalism and marketing were my two factors 🙂


  1. […] Let’s start a list:* Are you smiling when you answer the phone?* If you say you’ll call back in 2 hours, which happens more often … a 90 minute callback or a 3 hour callback?* Do you use “www” in your URL like everbody else or are you “geek cool“?* Did you actually put thought into the difference between the fonts that you use in headlines vs. body text?* Do you reinforce your own brand by giving your employees computer wallpaper?* etc. […]