Purchasing and setting up a custom domain to work as your storefront is an important and very common request for Cratejoy merchants. This document will cover the basics, and then provide links to detailed setup instructions on how to properly set up your custom domain.
All you need to start is a domain that you have already purchased. Popular sites to purchase domains include:
What you need to do once you have purchased a domain:
There are two steps that you’ll need to perform on the site you used to purchase your domain:
- Create a CNAME record on your ‘www’ subdomain pointing to ‘LB.cratejoy.com’
- Create an A Record on your naked domain with the IP Address of 184.108.40.206
Instructions for specific Domain Registrars:
- Adding a CNAME: https://www.godaddy.com/help/add-a-cname-record-19236
- Adding an A Record: https://www.godaddy.com/help/add-an-a-record-19238
- Add a CNAME: https://my.bluehost.com/hosting/help/cname
- Add an A Record: https://my.bluehost.com/hosting/help/whats-an-a-record
- Add a CNAME: https://www.register.com//customersupport/tutorials/cname.rcmx
- Add an A Record: https://www.register.com/hosting_welcome/initialsetup.rcmx
Setting Up Your Custom Domain in Cratejoy
Once you've set up your DNS records accordingly, you will want to place your custom domain in your merchant portal here. Be sure to enter your custom domain without www or you may see an error message.
- Domain Registrar
- An organization that manages the reservation of internet domain names
- Naked Domain
- An internet domain without any “www” or other subdomains. Example: mystore.com
- Www subdomain
- An internet domain prefixed with a “www” subdomain. Example: www.mystore.com
- Also called a “Canonical” name. This is record that specifies that the site being loaded is actually an alias of another site. Example: “Where does Jim live?” “Jim actually lives in Jeff’s house” (Jim’s House's CNAME: Jeff’s House)
- A Record
- Also called an Address record. This is the basic DNS record that runs the internet, and points any specific website at the IP that should be loaded. Example: "Where is Jeff's House?" “Jeff’s house is 123 Briar Street” (Jeff’s House’s A Record: 123 Briar Street)
- Putting these last two examples together. A request to find Jim’s house would first say “Jim lives at Jeff’s House”, and then “Jeff’s house is at 123 Briar Street"
- How long does it take for changes to take effect?
- Typically changes take anywhere from 1-30 minutes to propagate. However in most cases these changes should be seen within just a few minutes.
- What if I want my Cratejoy store to be on its own subdomain instead of the naked or www domain?
- Luckily that’s very easy! In that case you need your CNAME to be on your specified subdomain (Ex: subscribe.mystore.com) instead of on your www subdomain (Ex: www.mystore.com)
- I purchased through a provider not on your list. How do I find the instructions on setting up these records?
- Not to worry. This is a very common operation for every single domain registrar, and simply searching online for the name of your registrar and “Add CNAME” or “Add A Record” should immediately show you the help you need
- What are these records doing?
- Why do I need this A-Record on my ‘naked domain’?
- Unfortunately the way the internet works is that you cannot set a CNAME on a naked domain. This means we need to send any requests from your naked domain over to your www subdomain which then can be alias’d to the correct load balancer. The IP that we provide you is a service called wwwizer which manages this exact type of forwarding from your naked domain onto the www subdomain
- Instead of an A-Record couldn’t I just always tell people to go to my www subdomain?
- Yes, but it’s definitely a best practice to also have your naked subdomain also have its traffic wind up at your www subdomain through that A record