Using Existing Domains for a Mobile Website

By Michael J. O'Farrell, John R. Levine, Jostein Algroy, James Pearce, Daniel Appelquist

Part of Mobile Internet For Dummies Cheat Sheet

If you want to keep your existing web domain but create a specific mobile address, you can follow a couple of conventions.

One possibility is to place an extra section at the start of the domain name. You can then use this section, often known as a third-level domain, to replace the www that’s often used at the start of web addresses. One common replacement is mobile, and another is simply m. So your site address could then become


This approach is useful if you want to hold on to the use of your existing .com site. It might involve some extra keystrokes on the part of the user, although most mobile browsers default to the mobile site. Although some host providers may charge you for extra third-level domains, only a small amount of configuration is required, and of course you don’t need to buy a new domain name.

You can also use directories under the domain name. These are like folders in a desktop file system: a hierarchy of names after the address that help split up the site into useful sections. You might choose to use the name mobile in that way and use a site address like this:

Again, a directory might involve more typing for the user, but it doesn’t require you to configure anything special on your web server.