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Transferring a domain to Squarespace before creating a site

If you have a third-party domain to move to Squarespace and don't need a full site yet, you can transfer it as your first step. We'll link your domain to a parking page until you build a site to go with it.

To transfer a domain to an active site, log in and use the Domains panel instead.

Before you begin

  • To ensure a smooth transition, we recommend that the person listed as the domain administrator handle the transfer. If you’re the domain administrator, ensure that the administrator email address listed for your domain is accurate and accessible. You’ll use this email address to approve the transfer.
  • Changing your domain contact information can lock the domain for 60 days and block the transfer. Before changing any contact information, ask your provider if this will lock your domain.
  • You can't transfer a domain that has the word "squarespace" or "sqsp" in it.
  • For common questions and answers about transferring a domain, visit Domain transfers FAQ.

Timing

Domain transfer speed depends on your current domain provider. Some domains transfer within one day, while others can take closer to 15 days to complete. To learn more, visit Domain transfer timing.

Pricing and billing

Here's how much it costs to transfer a domain to Squarespace and how registration works:

  • Pricing is based on the TLD, from $20 to $70.
  • To complete the transfer, you'll pay for one year of domain registration.
  • There's no extra fee for the transfer itself.
  • You'll keep the time remaining on your registration on top of the extra year you'll register through us.
  • Your domain will renew at the same price at the end of its registration term.
  • If you transfer a domain eligible for the free Squarespace Domain offer, you’ll see a credit for your domain purchase when you upgrade to an annual billing plan.
  • Your domain includes free WHOIS Privacy and SSL.

For more details, see our FAQ.

Transfer requirements

Before getting started, ensure your domain is eligible for transfer. If you’re not sure if your domain meets these rules, check with your current registrar. You can use our sample message to ask them for help.

  • The domain’s TLD must be on our supported TLD list.
  • We don’t support registry premium domains.
  • Sixty days must have elapsed since you registered or transferred the domain with your current provider.
  • Your domain must be active with your current provider. If your domain is past due, but not completely expired, ask your provider if it's eligible for transfer before starting the process.
  • You’ll need to unlock your domain to transfer it.
  • We don’t accept domains with current registration terms longer than 9 years.

If your domain doesn't meet these requirements, you can try connecting it to your site instead.

Moving email records

If you have a custom email address linked to your domain, you can transfer your MX records to Squarespace along with your domain. Your MX records keep your email hosted with your current email provider.

Before transferring your domain to Squarespace, we recommend contacting your current email provider to ensure that there won’t be any restrictions or issues by moving to Squarespace. Some providers require keeping your domain hosted with them to keep your email account active. You may also want to back up any essential emails, contacts, or settings you may need.

See Step 4 for more information on transferring DNS settings.

Step 1 - Prepare your domain with your current provider

Complete the following steps with your current domain provider to make your domain available for transfer.

  1. Verify the administrator email address listed for the domain. All communications regarding the transfer will be sent to this email address.
  2. Follow your provider’s instructions to unlock your domain for transfer. Your domain can’t be transferred while it’s locked.
  3. Get the authorization code—also called an “EPP code” or “transfer key”—from your provider. Some providers may need a day or two to generate this code, so we recommend requesting it as soon as you’ve unlocked your domain. You’ll enter this code during the transfer process, so ensure that you have access to it, or copy and paste it in a safe space before continuing.

Step 2 - Start the transfer

Begin the transfer process on Squarespace.

  1. Go to squarespace.com/domain-name-search.
  2. Near the bottom-left corner, click Transfer your domain to Squarespace.
  3. Enter the full domain name you’re transferring in the search box, and then click Continue.
Note: If you see an error message at this point, ensure that your domain meets all of our transfer requirements. If it does, contact your current domain provider for help.

You’ll now be prompted to sign up for a new account or log into an existing account.

If you're new to Squarespace

  • Enter your name and email address, and create a password to use to log into your parking page. Click Sign Up & Create.
  • You can also sign up using Facebook, Google, or Twitter. Click the social account you want to use, and follow the prompts to verify and create the account.
Note: If you try to sign up with a social account and see an error that says Email address required, ensure you have an email address on file for that social account.

If you already have a Squarespace account

Click Or use an existing account, then log in using the same email address and password, or social account, you use to log into other sites. This adds your new parking page to your account. Click Sign In & Create.

Step 3 - Prepare domain and authorize transfer

In the next window, you’ll confirm that you’ve unlocked your domain and you’ll enter your authorization code.

The Unlock Domain option should display a green check mark, which means you can transfer the domain. If it displays a red ! instead, contact your domain provider for help, then click Refresh to try again.

Next, in the field under Enter Authorization Code, add the authorization code from your provider.

Tip: The authorization code is a unique string of letters, numbers, and other characters. Because it can be a complex code, we recommend copying and pasting it instead of typing it.

When both options look correct, click Continue.

Step 4 - Review DNS settings

In the next window, confirm the DNS records to move to Squarespace. To minimize any downtime, we recommend keeping them switched to ON. Any options switched to OFF must be managed manually.

  • Point to Squarespace - Change CNAME and A records to point the domain to Squarespace.
  • Keep Other DNS Records - Keep other DNS records intact, like MX records for email. Click View records to review the current DNS settings.
  • Move Nameservers to Squarespace - Move the domain's nameservers to Squarespace. If you toggle this option off, it’s not possible to move DNS records to Squarespace.

If all settings look correct, click Continue.

Step 5 - Review and confirm registration details

In the next window, confirm the domain’s registration details. Ensure that the address shown in the Email Address field is correct, as this is how we’ll notify you that your transfer is complete. These fields will automatically populate with information we detect from your WHOIS records with your original registrar.

When everything looks correct and all required fields are complete, then click Continue. If you’ve added any new data, your WHOIS records will update when your transfer is complete. This won't disrupt the transfer process, but will ensure all contact records are correct when they move to Squarespace.

Step 6 - Enter payment details & confirm registration terms

Follow the prompts to enter your payment information for the transfer. By transferring your domain to Squarespace, you’ll be charged for one additional year of registration with Squarespace. Pricing is based on your domain’s TLD. Click Continue.

In the next panel, review and confirm the transfer details:

  1. Confirm the credit card that will be charged.
  2. Confirm the total charge for one year of domain registration.
  3. Review the terms in the white box, including your domain’s new expiration date.
  4. If everything looks correct, click Transfer.
  5. If your payment is successful, you’ll see a purchase receipt. Click Continue to go to your parking page.

Step 7 - Wait and test

After completing the steps above, your previous registrar needs to release the domain. Depending on the provider, this can take up to 15 days. This timing is out of Squarespace’s control, but we recommend logging into your provider’s account to see if you can confirm the release manually. If your domain transfer is still pending after 15 days and you’ve correctly followed all steps above, contact your current domain provider for more details.

While your transfer is in progress, we don't recommend making any changes to your DNS settings, such as adding a G Suite email account. Wait until your domain is fully transferred before adding any new integrations.

Log into your parking page at any time to check your progress. When the domain is fully transferred, it will appear with a green label under Managed by Squarespace.

Log into your parking page

While your domain transfer is pending, you can access your new parking page. Log in to manage your billing information and get to know Squarespace’s settings.

There are a few ways to log in:

  • Use the Login option on Squarespace.com.
  • Visit your parking page's URL and Esc.
  • Visit your parking page’s built-in URL, followed by /config. For example, https://your-page.squarespace.com/config

On the login page, enter the email address and the password you created when you signed up.

When you’re logged in, you’ll land on your parking page menu. Your menu includes access to your domain’s advanced DNS settings, custom email settings, billing, and other areas to help you manage your parking page and domain.

Troubleshooting

If your domain fails to transfer, you’ll get an email from Squarespace. This can happen if you entered wrong information in the registration field, entered the authorization code incorrectly, or for other reasons. For a full list of scenarios, see our FAQ.

Tip: For help communicating with your current provider, visit Requesting third-party domain help and review the "Transfer help" sections.

Cancel the transfer

If you already confirmed the transfer in Squarespace, you may still be able to cancel it. If your parking page panel still lists the domain as Transfer In Progress, ask your current provider to deny it. This may or may not be possible, and depends on whether the current provider has already approved and released the domain.

Remove a failed transfer

If you cancel a domain transfer, or if it fails for another reason, you may see a Transfer Failed box in the Domains panel. The steps to remove a failed transfer depend on whether or not you have additional subscriptions on your parking page, such as another Squarespace Domain or a G Suite account.

If you have additional subscriptions:

You can remove a failed transfer before starting over. While this step isn't necessary, you may find it easier to keep track of pending transfers.

  1. Click the domain under Transfers In Progress.
  2. In the Transfer Failed box, click Done.

You may need to refresh your browser for the failed domain transfer to disappear.

If you don't have additional subscriptions:

Your parking page will be cancelled and removed from your Squarespace account if a transfer fails or is cancelled manually. To try transferring again, restart the process from the domain search page to create a new parking page.

Next steps

If you’re new to Squarespace, your parking page is the beginning of your domain's place on the web:

  • Cancel your account with your previous domain provider if you no longer need it. You’ll now manage all domain settings and billing through Squarespace.
  • To start a trial site connected to your domain, click Build A Site. We recommend exploring our different plans. If you sign up for an annual billing plan, at checkout you’ll see credit for any eligible domain linked to your parking page.
  • To get custom G Suite email addresses for this domain, click Email.
  • Review your domain invoice.

Parking pages include 24/7 Customer Support. If you can’t find the answer in our guides, we’re always here to help.

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Transferring a domain to Squarespace before creating a site