12/08/22 Update: G Suite has been rebranded to Google Workspace. However, all information below remains relevant.
Google Workspace has grown and matured a lot over the past ten years and so have the companies that use it. To make it easier for large organisations to manage their IT infrastructure, companies can register multiple domains within Workspace so that all employees can be managed in the same instance, regardless of which branch of the business they are in.
There are a lot of reasons why companies purchase and operate under multiple domains, such as geographically based branding, differentiating specialisms within the organisation and, of course, SEO purposes.
This blog post aims to break down the different aspects of working with multiple domains in Workspace and highlight how Google Cloud Partners, like Cobry, can help make the most of the service.
If you’re still to make the move to Workspace, you can get in touch with us to discuss how we can help your organisation make the transition as smooth as possible.
When your organisation signs up for Workspace, your Admin or Google Cloud Partner provides the domain name that you would like to have associated with Workspace. This becomes the primary domain for all users and will be used to form their email address. This domain must be one that your organisation already owns, otherwise you can purchase it during the setup.
Adding Google Workspace Domains
If your organisation owns multiple domains and would like to use them within Workspace, they can be added either as an additional domain or as a domain alias.
- Domain alias: provides users with an additional email address at the domain.
- Secondary (or non-Primary) domain: Create new users on the domain.
Domain aliases can be used as alternative names for your Primary domain, meaning that users can have multiple email addresses for the same account - ie. emails sent to the following addresses would arrive in the same inbox: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org.
Secondary (or non-Primary) Domains
If an organisation has been bought over or is merging with another company, it may already have a Workspace domain full of users. If that’s the case, this domain would be added as a Secondary Domain, allowing all users to be managed from the same admin console but still providing them with their own separate inbox and account. This setup can help a lot with the smooth management of calendars and Drive sharing.
Organisational Units are used to help better organise and manage the users within your domain. They can be configured to provide different features, services and access rights to different groups of users within your organisation, such as a Customer Support Team, HR & Finance, External Contractors, Senior Management etc.
These organisational units can also include users from multiple domains, as long as they have been added correctly.
If there are external domains which your organisation work with frequently, such as a supplier, partner or client, you can whitelist them in Workspace. This essentially marks them as being trusted and will allow your users to share files with this domain.
Managing Multiple Domains
If your organisation has a lot of domains to manage, then Google Workspace has got you covered by supporting up to 600 domains in total. There can only ever be one Primary domain, but this can have up to 20 aliases to allow users to send mail from different addresses.
You can, however, have 599 Secondary domains, which is fantastic for large groups of companies who may own many businesses and want to manage their IT all under the same account.
Changing Primary Domain
Why would an organisation want to change their primary Workspace domain? There are many reasons, such as a change in ownership, a rebrand or updating to a new domain extension such as “.com” to help enter new international markets.
When updating your primary Workspace domain, you may also need to update user accounts and organisational units to match. This can have an effect on things like signing-in, 2-Factor Authentication and data synchronisation.
Workspace's single sign-on service (and that of 3rd party solutions) provide access to a wide number of 3rd party apps, such as Copper CRM, Asana and DocuSign, through the use of your Workspace account. This means that users only need to remember one set of log-in details. Provided the SSO system has been configured correctly and identifies users by email address, it will continue to work for G Suite Accounts with multiple domains.
How Cobry Help
As experienced Google Cloud Partners, Cobry can help your organisation, big or small, with all of the above-mentioned domain configurations and administration. We have had many clients come to us for help with consolidating their setup and making sure it’s easily managed going forward.
We also help businesses ensure they have the most effective, secure and efficient setup for their needs by providing Security Reviews and Domain Audits.
So whether you need to update your Primary Domain, add a Domain Alias, a Secondary Domain or even update your account’s billing country and currency, you can get in touch with us via the details below, and we will be happy to help.
If you need assistance with any Workspace-related projects, please don't hesitate to get in touch by dropping a quick message via the form below or booking a discovery call; we're always happy to chat.