The Difference between Wildcard SSL and Multi-Domain SSL

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By faiza

How often do you manage multiple websites on the same or different servers? If your answer is quite often, you are likely familiar with the challenge of adequately securing these websites under one roof; this is where Wildcard SSL and Multi-Domain SSL come in.

Wildcard SSL certificates are a type of SSL certificate that provides security for one domain and all its subdomains. So, if you have an e-commerce site, blog, and forums at, a Wildcard SSL certificate will cover all of them.

Multi-Domain SSL certificates are more versatile in that they allow you to secure several different domains with one Certificate. This means that instead of purchasing multiple “single domain certificates” for each website or service; like webmail and FTP servers; that you manage, a Multi-Domain SSL gives you the flexibility to protect multiple sites with just one Certificate.

Keep reading as we explore the differences between Wildcard SSL and Multi-Domain SSL certificates to help you decide which one is best for your requirements.

What Is Wildcard SSL Certificate?

A Wildcard SSL certificate is a type of SSL where security is provided to multiple subdomains under a single base domain. It is far more cost-effective than the standard SSL as it cuts the cost of buying SSL for individual domains for security. It also helps save enough time and builds better scalability.

It is the best option to secure all first-level domains. Any e-commerce business wishing to prevent itself from the clutches of cyber-crimes and fraud attacks can immediately leverage this SSL. Wildcard SSL certificates are helpful for small businesses looking to grow their brands gradually. It comes with (*) as its character. So, if your primary domain is, your SSL will be * 

Types of sub-domains secured with a Wildcard SSL


Which are the Three Best Wildcard SSL Certificates?

1. Essential SSL Wildcard Certificate

Essential SSL Wildcard certificate is a mid-range SSL that offers a medium assurance of security against cybercrimes & fraud for your website. It comes with domain validation, offers 256-bit strong encryption, unlimited server license, and a 2048-bit signature, and is issued in minutes.

2. Positive SSL Wildcard Certificate

It is a cost-effective Wildcard SSL offered by Comodo and provides an entry-level 256-bit encryption to secure your infinite sub-domains; it comes with domain validation, 2048-bit signature, 99.99% browser trust, unlimited server license, & issuance with minutes.

3. Premium SSL Wildcard Certificate

It is the best SSL you can choose for your business website; it can act as evidence for the most efficient security & encryption. It comes with organization validation, offers the premium level of encryption of 256-bit, and the highest level of assurance.

Benefits Of a Wildcard SSL Certificate

  • It provides security for unlimited sub-domains.
  • One of the easiest ways to save up on your costs for diverse sub-domains.
  • Easy to manage SSL.
  • It can help conveniently build trust, confidence, and credibility among diverse users.
  • Renders the quickest issuance certificate that there is.

What Is Multi-domain SSL?

Organizations with large-scale businesses are more likely to opt for multi-domain SSLs. These are the SSL types wherein you can receive protection for multiple domains within one SSL environment. These certificates are called Unified Communication Certificates (UCC) or Subject Alternative Names (SAN.) With this type of SSL, securing up to 250 domains becomes convenient.

Types of domains secured with MDC SSL


Multi-Domain SSL comes in Following SSL forms.

1. DV Multi-domain SSL

These Multi-Domain Certificates come with Domain Validation, where the CA (Certificate Authority) only needs to validate the domain name; It can be issued within minutes & offers the entry-level security of 256-bit.  

1. OV Multi-domain SSL

This Multi-Domain SSL comes with organization validation, where the CA needs to verify the identity of both the organization name and domain name; it takes up to 3 days to issue the Certificate.

2. EV Multiple Domain SSL

They provide the highest security of SSL with extended validation, so if your business is verified and officially registered with the region’s local government, you are good to go with this certificate option. It comes with the highest layer of encryption, increases the brand reputation, and boosts ecommerce conversation. 

3. Unified Communications

With a UCC SSL Certificate, users get the strongest encryption & privacy with the bonus of organization validation; they are perfect for securing multiple websites, & especially suitable for Microsoft Office communications & Exchange Server.

Benefits Of Multi-domain SSL

  • They offer maximum security for multiple domains and subdomains under a single certification.
  • They have a very convenient one-time verification process that is hassle-free.
  • Offers three distinctive levels of validation for utmost convenience, it helps trust flourish among users.
  • Offers to maintain credibility across the entire website.

The Bottom Line

When shopping for an SSL certificate, you must know the differences between Wildcard & Multi-Domain SSL certificates to choose the right one for your needs. Both offer advantages and disadvantages, but the bottom line is that if you need to secure multiple domains with separate IP addresses, a multi-Domain SSL cert is best. On the other hand, if all your sites are on one domain and use the same IP address, then a Wildcard SSL cert will do just fine.

No matter which option you choose, make sure to consider its strength and validity period as well as compatibility with different browsers and devices before making your final purchase. Good luck!