Blog in a Sub-Folder or Sub-Domain?

The eternal question

One of the most asked questions in the world of blog SEO is “Should I host my blog at blog.example.com or www.example.com/blog?

Having a blog on a sub-domain is been discussed for ever and actually nobody has the objective or right answer. As of this moment for Google it doesn’t matter if the blog is in a sub-domain or a sub-directory, (sub-folder). Use to be different years back.
I’ve been using Hubspot methods of marketing and SEO for at least 8 years and IMO are the best. I love the company and they suggest to use a blog on a sub-domain. This is their blog: https://blog.hubspot.com and they use a very particular way of marketing, “Inbound Marketing.”
This is what I always tell my potential customers:
“If you have an active blog with good quality content will become the main tool to attract traffic to your domain.”
Now, practically these are some reasons by which I have verified that having a blog on a sub-domain is positive:
  1. If your site is hacked your blog can keep functioning. If your blog is hacked, your site can keep working. If your site is hacked you can keep writing blog posts that at the end of the day will determine primarily your domain’s traffic.
  2. On my personal experience having a site with several sub-domains has increased Google’s PR, (PageRank) in a shorter period of time. Google will not tell you that because otherwise people will start creating sub-domains like crazy but I have verified what I am saying.
  3. Transferring a blog from a sub-domain to a sub-directory will not necessary transfer the SEO for every individual blog post correctly. Meaning you will have to check every blog post in the sub-directory and make sure that the SEO is right. For Dalia’s blog will mean a good amount of work.
  4. Google analytics’ information is much clear, simply because you have 2 separate sites.
  5. In Google Analytics you can see the blog as a clear referral to your site and likewise a clear referral from your site to the blog. If you do Content Marketing, Social Media Marketing or Inbound Marketing referrals are very important.
  6. Doing Google Analytics’ reports is much faster and cheaper for the customer if you have a site and a blog as separate properties. I mostly do reports for the blogs since I follow the theory that an active blog with good quality content is the main tool to attract traffic.
  7. Google will consider a link from your site to the blog or from your blog to the site as an inbound link and this can be useful in Google Search Results.
  8. Some paid plugins, (upgrades) will not longer work if you transfer a blog from a sub-domain to a sub-directory.
I bet that there are more reasons that I can write to justify having a blog on a sub-domain but they don’t come to my mind right now.
The main problem of having a blog in a sub-domain is the cost, simply because you have to create 2 sites and maintain them. Unfortunately we don’t have the time to do that.
“Talks the talk and fly the walk.” 🙂
~ by JCG