Master Of Your Domains: The Logistics Of Hosting Multiple Sites

By Jennifer Marsh

Jennifer Marsh is a software developer, programmer and technology writer and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting.

For most large companies, one website isn’t enough to handle the vast amount of products and services offered to customers.

A separate domain for each service and product aligns to the organization’s segmentation while also making it easier for the business to track customer different customer interests. A multi-domain web hosting cloud service is the best choice for handling this type of differentiation.

Separate Website or Subdomains?

It’s a question usually asked before deciding on a multi-domain platform. Subdomains are categorization techniques used to segment within the company. Microsoft implements the best subdomain architecture.

However, if the content is too vast enough to warrant its own domain, then the company can break out the product and its backend development into its own domain. For instance, some companies use a separate affiliate domain to host an affiliate platform for customers. This means affiliates get reports, services and information on a separate domain rather than navigating through the main customer website. The separate domain makes it easier for the affiliate to find relevant information.

Use APIs for Shared Processes

With multiple domains, the company still needs to share some resources for backend data, reports, order processing and customer service. Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) give the business a way to call shared functions and manipulate the data in the backend databases from one location. The shared resources can be called by each separate domain without repeating code.

Centralize Databases

The data for customers and orders should be located in one central database. The databases can replicate to other databases (such as a reporting server), but centralizing a main database means prevents data from becoming redundant. It also puts the company in position to offer one account for multiple products, which is much more convenient for customers.

Web Farms

Cloud hosts offer a tremendous amount of computing power wrapped up in a web farm. Web farms are multiple servers used simultaneously to process traffic requests. When searching for a cloud host, check the infrastructure documentation to ensure that the cloud host is implementing an actual web farm of servers and not a single shared server for the web traffic.

These few techniques will keep the site up-to-speed on the latest in cloud computing power, and the centralized locations for data and configurations make it easier for the administrator to manage all of the domain assets.