Note: While our most popular guides have been translated into Spanish, some guides are only available in English.

Connecting a domain to your Squarespace site

If you purchased a domain from a third-party provider (like GoDaddy, Hover, or 1&1) and want to keep it registered with them, you can connect it to your site by following a process called domain mapping. In this process, you'll change a few settings in your registrar's account. After completing these steps, your domain will stay registered with the host that you purchased the domain from, but it will connect to your Squarespace site. Before you begin, review our requirements for connecting a third-party domain.

Tip: If your domain is eligible, we recommend transferring it instead of connecting it. Learn more about the differences between transferring and connecting or get started with a transfer.

If you don't have a custom domain, you can register a new one through Squarespace.

Before you begin

Preparation

  • To follow this guide, you should already have registered a domain with a third-party provider. After you connect your domain by following the steps in this guide, you must leave it registered with your provider to keep it connected to your Squarespace site.
  • Your domain provider must offer full DNS access. If they don't, you’ll need to transfer the domain to a new provider before connecting it to Squarespace.
  • We recommend using your domain provider's default nameservers and updating the DNS settings in your domain account.
  • Most domains connect to a site within 24 hours, but it can sometimes take up to 72 hours. Keep this timing in mind if you have a deadline.

Features

  • You can connect your domain to a trial or paid Squarespace site. You can't connect to an expired site.
  • If you have an email account linked to your custom domain, you can keep using it after connecting to Squarespace. Before connecting your domain, review the recommendations and options.
  • You can use multiple custom domains for your site, and there's no limit to how many you can connect or register. For more information, visit Managing multiple domains.

Limitations

  • It's not possible to connect a third-party domain to a specific page on your site. All connected domains will point to the homepage and resolve to the primary domain.
  • You can't connect a third-party domain to a parking page.
  • You can't connect a custom domain to Squarespace if the domain name has the word "squarespace" or "sqsp" in it.
  • Domains with special characters (such as ü, é, ñ) may not display properly on all browsers. If a browser can’t display the character, it will reformat the domain with extra characters and dashes. For example, the domain “übercool.de,” redirects to "xn--bercool-m2a.de” in unsupported browsers.

Provider-specific guides

Instead of following the general instructions on this page, we have step-by-step guides for many popular providers:

Step 1 - Start the connection in Squarespace

To connect your domain, start in the Domains panel:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Settings, then click Domains. You can also press the ? key while any panel is open and search domains.
  2. Click Use a Domain I Own.
  3. Enter the full domain name you’re connecting in the Domain Name field, and then click Continue.
  4. Click Connect From Provider.
  5. Select your domain provider from the drop-down menu. If you don’t see your domain provider, select Other. You can still connect your domain if you don’t see your provider in this list.
  6. Click Connect Domain.
  7. In the message that appears, click Okay.

Step 2 - View your DNS settings

After you connect your domain, a new panel will open with the records you need to enter in your provider account so your domain connects to Squarespace. Keep this panel open for your reference.

If you ever need to access your DNS settings in the future, open Domains in the Settings panel. Then click the name of your third-party domain to see the DNS settings for that domain.

Your domain records may be green or red, depending on what Squarespace is seeing from your domain provider.

dns-settings.png

Step 3 - Log into your domain account

In a new browser tab or window, log into your domain account, and find where you manage your DNS settings. Depending on your provider, this may be called Zone File Settings, Manage Domains, Domain Manager, DNS Manager, or something similar.

Here, you'll create these records so your domain correctly links to your Squarespace site.

Note: Don't delete MX records during this process. MX Records connect your email address. Deleting them could interfere with your email service.

Step 4 - Add the first CNAME Record

In the first line of your Squarespace DNS Settings, copy the unique code that appears directly below the Host column. The unique code is a random string of numbers and letters that must point to verify.squarespace.com.

In your provider's DNS manager, create a CNAME with these values:

Alias or Host Name Type or Record Type Points to
Copy and paste the unique code under Host on the first line. CNAME or CNAME Alias verify.squarespace.com
Note: If you don't add this CNAME, or if it's entered incorrectly, the domain will unlink from your site after 15 days. If this happens, you can start over to reconnect the domain.

Step 5 - Add the second CNAME Record

In the second line of your Squarespace DNS Settings, www appears directly below the Host column. This record must point to ext-cust.squarespace.com.

Depending on your provider, you may already have a CNAME set up with a www Alias. If so, edit this existing CNAME so that Points To is ext-cust.squarespace.com. (For most providers, add this without the last ".")

In your provider's DNS manager, create a CNAME with these values:

Alias or Host Name Type or Record Type Points to
www CNAME or CNAME Alias ext-cust.squarespace.com

Note: If you're experiencing issues adding this record or if your domain provider doesn't support CNAME records, add an A record with the following details instead:

  • Alias or Host Name: www
  • Points To or Details: 198.185.159.144

Then, in Step 6, only add the three remaining A records.

Step 6 - Add the A Records

In the last four lines of your Squarespace DNS Settings, you'll see four IP addresses in the Required Data column. Each of these displays @ in the Host column.

Depending on your provider, you may already have some A Records in place. If so, edit any existing A Records with Host Name @ so that Points To matches the values below.

Find the area of your DNS settings where you edit your A Records. If possible, create four A Records matching what's shown below. If you can only add one A Record, use the record in the first row.

Host or Host Name Records, Record Type, or Type Points To or Details
@ A 198.185.159.144
@ A 198.185.159.145
@ A 198.49.23.144
@ A 198.49.23.145

If your provider doesn't accept @ as a Host Name, we recommend leaving the Host/Host Name field blank or entering your domain name without the "www" in front.

Step 7 - Wait for the connection to complete

It can take 24 to 72 hours for the connection to start working properly. While you wait:

  • You can return to your Squarespace DNS Settings, click Refresh below the records, and the Current Data column will start to show if your records are entered correctly. When the domain is correctly linked, it will appear in the Domains panel with a Connected label.
  • Watch for your SSL certificate to generate. You may see error messages about privacy on your domain. These messages are normal while the domain connects. When the connection completes, the SSL certificate will generate and the errors will go away.
  • It’s normal to see errors in the Domains panel or when visiting your domain for up to 72 hours after completing the steps in this guide. If you see any error messages after 72 hours has passed, see the next section.

Troubleshoot with the DNS record checker

If we detect that your records weren’t set up properly, your domain will appear in the Domains panel with the message Could not verify domain ownership.

To troubleshoot, use the DNS checker tool in the Domains panel to see the exact CNAME and A Records to fix with your domain provider.

Click the domain in the Domains panel, and then click DNS Settings. To learn more, visit Troubleshooting domain connections.

dns-settings-screenshot.png

More help

We offer other a number of resources to help you connect a third-party domain to your Squarespace site:

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Connecting a domain to your Squarespace site