This guide will give you an idea of what you are trying to do when you connect your domain. Don't worry, it's not too complicated (and there's always Option B!)
Option A: You manage your Domain
DNS (Domain Name System)
There are many ways to connect a domain. This is why there are so many settings on your domain registrar's site! At Audienceware we connect domains using one method. There's no name for this method - it's just the way we do it.
You will need to do all 3 steps for your connection to work. Let's get started!
1. Receive Confirmation that Audienceware is ready for you to point your domain
- As we will have been working together on your website, a member of the Audienceware team will confirm our server is ready for you to point your domain.
- Don't proceed before you have confirmation, otherwise your site will point to us but nothing will happen!
2. Forward/redirect 'yourdomain.com' to 'www.yourdomain.com'
Most domain registrars have a setting called URL 'Forwarding' or 'Redirect'. You need to access this.
What to do:
- Forward 'yourdomain.com' to 'www.yourdomain.com'
- Always use a '301 permanent' forward/redirect.
- Do not use masking, stealth or 302 temporary forwarding.
What does this do?
- 'yourdomain.com' and 'www.yourdomain.com' are actually two different sites ('www.yourdomain.com' is a subdomain of 'yourdomain.com').
- Once you add this forwarding 'yourdomain.com' will automatically load 'www.yourdomain.com'.
- DO NOT foward to 'audienceware.com'
- Some registrars do not have forwarding or will make you pay extra to add it. Some will not let you forward to your own subdomain. If you are on one of these registrars you should transfer to a different service (we recommend namecheap.com or name.com).
3. Make a CNAME record with host 'www' pointing to 'prod2.audienceware.com'
On your registrar site the place to make a CNAME record is usually called 'DNS Settings' or 'Advanced DNS settings' or 'DNS Records'. You need to access this.
What to do:
- Create a CNAME record.
- The host needs to be 'www' and it has to point to 'audienceware.com'
- Leave the TTL setting to whatever is already there.
- If there are any records (CNAME or other) with host 'www' you need to delete them first.
- If there's a CNAME record with host: *.yourdomain.com you need to delete it.
What does this do?
- This CNAME record is what connects your domain to audienceware. This will take requests for 'www.yourdomain.com' and send them to audienceware.com
- Every registrar should allow you to add or edit a CNAME record. If your does not then you really, really should transfer to a better service! (We recommend namecheap.com or name.com).
So there you have it: the 3 steps to connecting your domain.
If everything is working, this is what will happen when someone types 'yourdomain.com' into their web browser:
- Your registrar gets a request for 'yourdomain.com' and URL forwarding turns the request into 'www.yourdomain.com'
- Your 'www' CNAME records takes the request for 'www.yourdomain.com' and sends it to audienceware.
- 4ormat finds the account with 'www.yourdomain.com' and loads your site (with 'www.yourdomain.com' in the address bar).
Now that you understand the basics, it should be way easier to set up your domain.
Note that changes made on your registrar's site can take up to 48 hours to take effect.
Still not working?
- You may have done everything correctly, just as this guide says, but your domain is still not working. What's going on?
- This isn't your fauilt, there are many reasons for why a connection may not work. At this point it would be best to send us a Domain Help Request so we can have a look. You can send us a request here
Option B - Audienceware manages your domain (Fully Managed Services)
If you are a Fully Managed Services client and would like us to connect your domain please send us a Domain Help Request here.
We will need your Registrar login details to perform the above steps.
Some Registrars do not provide tools to manage your 'DNS Setting' - if this is the case, we may have to host your DNS for you - we can do that too!
That's it! Questions? Contact Us