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Manually connecting a 1&1 IONOS domain to your Squarespace site

If you're connecting your 1&1 IONOS domain for the first time, visit Connecting a 1&1 IONOS domain to your Squarespace site before following this guide. That guide walks you through the option to connect your 1&1 IONOS domain without manual setup.

If you’re having trouble connecting a 1&1 IONOS domain to Squarespace through our normal setup, you may need to complete the process manually. This guide will walk you through these steps, which include changing a few settings in your 1&1 IONOS account.

Before you begin, review our requirements for connecting a third-party domain.

Note: 1&1 rebranded as 1&1 IONOS.

Tip: We recommend transferring your domain to Squarespace instead of connecting it. Here are some reasons why you might want to transfer your domain:

  • You can move all aspects of managing it to your Squarespace account so you won't need to pay for it through a third party.
  • Your domain could qualify for one free year of hosting.
  • Squarespace can help with any issues with your domain directly.

Your domain must be eligible to transfer. Learn more about the differences between transferring and connecting or get started with a transfer here.

Navigating your 1&1 IONOS account

The screenshots in this guide show how a 1&1 IONOS account looks if you're in the United States, using a MyWebsite package, and have access to the beta version of their DNS panel. If you're in a different country, or using a different plan, your experience might be slightly different.

To follow this guide, be aware of the following in your 1&1 IONOS account:

  • When logging into 1&1 IONOS, ensure you’re logging into the Control Panel, and not the Customer Shop.
  • Ensure you can access your Domain Center. You can usually get there by first clicking Home in your left sidebar.
  • If you’re still having trouble navigating your account, contact 1&1 IONOS’ support team.

Step 1 - Start the connection in Squarespace

To connect your domain, start in the Domains panel:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Settings, and 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 linking in the Domain Name box, and then click Continue.
  4. Click Connect From Provider.
Note: If you see a message that says "This domain is already connected to another Squarespace site," check your other Squarespace sites to find where the domain is connected, then disconnect it from that site.
  1. Select 1&1 from the drop-down menu, if it's not already selected.
  2. Click Connect Domain.
  3. In the message that appears, click Okay.
  4. A new panel will open with the records to create in your 1&1 IONOS account. Keep this panel open for your reference.

Step 2 - Log into 1&1 IONOS

In a new browser tab or window, go to www.ionos.com and log into your Control Panel. In the My Domains list, find the domain you’re linking to Squarespace. Click the to the right and select DNS.

1_1_-_choose_dns.jpg

You'll now copy the records from the Squarespace Domain panel so your 1&1 IONOS domain correctly links to your Squarespace site.

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

Step 3 - Add the first CNAME

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.

sqsp_-_first_cname.jpg

In your 1&1 IONOS DNS settings, adjust the filter at the top of screen to Display All Records.

ionos_-_display_all_records.jpg

Above your existing records, click Add Record.

ionos_-_click_add_record.jpg

On the next page, click CNAME.

ionos_-_choose_cname.jpg

On the next page, enter data for the first CNAME:

  1. In the Host Name box, paste the unique code from Host column of the Domains panel.
  2. In the Points to box, enter verify.squarespace.com
  3. Leave the TTL option as 1 hour
  4. Click Save.

ionos_-_add_first_cname.jpg

You should now have a CNAME with your unique Host code pointing to 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 4 - Add the second CNAME

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.

Note: Your Squarespace DNS settings might also display a second www Host with the Record AAAA. This is a nameserver record from 1&1 IONOS that you'll delete from your 1&1 IONOS settings later in the process, but you can ignore it when adding your Squarespace records to 1&1 IONOS.

sqsp_-_second_cname.jpg

In your 1&1 IONOS DNS settings, ensure that your filter is still set to Display All Records. Click Add Record, then click CNAME.

On the next page, enter data for the second CNAME:

  1. In the Host Name box, enter www
  2. In the Points to box, enter ext-cust.squarespace.com
  3. Leave the TTL option as 1 hour
  4. Click Save.

ionos_-_add_second_cname.jpg

You should now have a CNAME with www pointing to ext-cust.squarespace.com.

I see an error message when I try to save this record

After clicking Save for the second set of CNAME records, you may see an error message that says “A CNAME record can only be set for one subdomain.”

If you see this message, click Cancel and review the following in your existing 1&1 IONOS DNS Settings:

  1. Ensure the filter at the top of the page is set to Display All Records.
  2. Delete any other records with host www by clicking the to the right of the record and choosing Delete record. Confirm by clicking Delete again on the next page.
  3. Sometimes changes in 1&1 IONOS’ DNS settings take time to propagate. Wait at least one hour, then refresh your DNS setting using your browser’s refresh button.
  4. If you’re still having trouble, contact 1&1 IONOS support team and ask if you have other records that could be preventing you from adding the new CNAME.

Step 5 - Add A records

In the last four lines of your Squarespace DNS Settings, you'll see four IP addresses in the Required Data column. Using the steps below, create four A Records in 1&1 IONOS matching these values.

sqsp_-_a_records.jpg

In your 1&1 IONOS DNS settings, ensure that your filter is still set to Display All Records. Click Add Record, then click A.

ionos_-_choose_a_record.jpg

On the next page, enter data for the first A record:

  1. In the Host Name box, enter @
  2. In the Points to box, enter 198.185.159.144
  3. Leave the TTL option as 1 hour
  4. In the preview section, click Do not add DNS record for www. The preview will adjust to a crossed-out preview www record.
  5. Click Save.
Note: If you see an error message saying “The service will be disabled,” ensure you’ve completed #4 in the steps above. If you don’t click Do not add DNS records for www, 1&1 IONOS will attempt to add a record that overrides the second CNAME.

ionos_-_add_first_a_record.jpg
Repeat this process three more times using the following IP addresses, ensuring that you disable the additional www record with each record:

  • 198.185.159.145
  • 198.49.23.144
  • 198.49.23.145

You should now have four A records pointing to the following IP addresses:

  • 198.185.159.144
  • 198.185.159.145
  • 198.49.23.144
  • 198.49.23.145
Note: If you have existing A Records, edit any with a Host Name @ so the Value matches the values above. If you see other A Records in your account that don’t match what’s shown in this guide:
  • Host: @ or blank - Delete only if it doesn't match what’s shown in this guide.
  • Host: Mail or Email - Don’t delete. This connects to your email address. Deleting it could interfere with your email service.

Step 6 - Delete AAAA Records

Delete any existing AAAA records in your 1&1 IONOS DNS settings, as these might conflict with your new records pointing to Squarespace.

  1. Ensure that your filter is still set to Display All Records
  2. Next to each AAAA record, click the to the right of the record and choose Delete record.
  3. Confirm by clicking Delete again on the next page.

1_1_-_delete_AAAA_record.jpg

Step 7 - Wait for the connection to complete

Congratulations, you've finished connecting the domain!

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.
  • 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 Can’t verify domain ownership.

troubleshoot.jpg

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. For detailed instructions, visit Checking your domain mapping records.

Getting more help

For more help with settings in your 1&1 IONOS account, contact their support team. To help them understand your issue, you can use one of our sample messages.

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Manually connecting a 1&1 IONOS domain to your Squarespace site