What Is Domain Masking?
Most of the times, whatever is there in the address bar or the URL field of a web browser can be changed. The process of changing the domain name in the URL that is displayed in the web browser is called domain masking. It is a very simple process of cloaking a domain name when it is being transferred to another domain. The original domain name will be kept in the address bar of your browser.
When can it be done?
Masking may be used when you have a very long domain name for your site. Long domain names can be very difficult to remember and people can also make mistakes while spelling them. However, changing to name to a shorter one will mean changing all the links on your site to the shorter name. This is where masking can be useful. You can just forward the new and short domain name to the old one and pm2.5 vs n95.
When someone types the new short domain name, it will still go to the old page itself but the new domain name will be displayed on the address bar.
Masking is used by many advertising companies for their advertisement campaigns. They run their campaigns from different domain manes and not the main site. This is done to prevent the server of the main site from getting very high traffic. In some cases, the work may be outsourced to other agencies that will run the ad campaigns from their servers. If this is being done, it may not be considered good user experience if the visitor sees a completely different domain name. People may even assume that the original site has been hacked. domain can be very helpful in such situations as the person visiting your advertisements will see your domain name only.
What is the process?
Domain masking may be done in two ways. They are given below:
- Iframe the old site in the new masked domain name. This will create a webpage that will run on the masked domain name. the masked domain will act like a window to see the original site
- Letting your web server handling the domain masking will be a better way to handle it. The server will handle it via a mod_rewrite command. This command instructs the server to set up the domain that needs to be masked as an alias of the target domain. As a result, the web server will show up pages of the same website under the non aliased domain name as well as the masked domain name
Most of the times domain masking causes search engines to see two domains with the same content. Hence they may remove the pages of one of the sites from its index. Most of the times, the content of the original site will be retained. However, if the search engines feel that the domain masking is an attempt to do something unethical, then they can even penalize the site. This does not mean that domain masking is a bad thing and should not be done. You can still mask the domain name if you add canonical tags on the pages of one of the two domain names. These tags will tell the search engines where to find the original version of the content. You will be eliminating any chance of the search engine seeing two versions of the same page by using the canonical tags. You need to be very careful while using the canonical tags. Even the smallest mistake in adding the tags can lead to your site disappearing from search engines. You can take the help of web designers or online marketing specialists to add these tags.