Domains, Upgrades

Domains » Use a Domain You Already Own (Domain Mapping)

Have you already purchased a domain name with another provider, such as GoDaddy, Namecheap, or 1&1? If you prefer to keep your domain registered with your current provider, you can use it with your WordPress.com site with domain mapping.

Mapping your domain means that instead of an address like yourgroovysite.wordpress.com, you can make your site’s address something like yourgroovydomain.com without the WordPress name in the address.

There are two important steps to mapping your domain to your WordPress.com site:

  1. Attaching your domain to your WordPress.com site. Jump to steps.
  2. Updating your domain name’s name servers to point to WordPress.com. Jump to steps.

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Domain Mapping Overview

Domain mapping means:

  • You keep the domain registered with the company you purchased it from (the registrar), such as GoDaddy, Namecheap, or 1&1, but point the domain to your WordPress.com site.
  • You will still need to pay the current registrar to keep the domain active every year.
  • Some domain settings and configurations will need to be made with the current registrar. We explain those in this guide.
  • If you’re trying to map a subdomain (for example blog.yourgroovydomain.com instead of yourgroovydomain.com), visit our Map A Subdomain support guide instead.

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If you would like to manage your site and domain all in one place, you can follow the steps to transfer the domain to us instead of mapping.


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Getting Started With Domain Mapping

To map a domain, you’ll need:


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Steps for Mapping a Domain

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If you have more than one site, go to My SitesSwitch Site and make sure to choose the site you want to add the domain to before following these steps.

  1. Go to the Domains page by selecting My Site Upgrades → Domains.
  1. Select Add Domain on the right.
The Domains section shows your existing domains as well as a button on the top right to Add Domain.
  1. Select Use a domain I own.
The Domains search section shows, at the bottom, an option for using a domain you have already registered.
  1. On the next screen select Map Your Domain.
For Use My Own Domain, there are two choices: Transfer to WordPress.com or Map Your Domain, with descriptions of what each option means.
  1. Enter the domain you’d like to map and click the Add button. Then complete checkout. Checkout will be free if you already own a plan!
The Map a Domain section at the end of adding a domain has a field to enter yours to finish mapping.
  1. After completing checkout, you can point your domain to WordPress.com by changing the name servers or adding our A records from the next screen. See the next section for detailed information about adding name servers at your domain registrar.
Completing the domain mapping by adding WordPress.com name servers or A records to the domain.
Completing the domain mapping.

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Change Your Domain's Name Servers

Name servers tell the domain where to point to. These must be changed with the company you purchased your domain from in order for the domain to load your WordPress.com site. You have two options for getting your name servers updated to point to your WordPress.com site.

Option 1: Update Name Servers Yourself

You can log into your account at your domain registrar and replace any existing name servers with these three domain name server (DNS) addresses:

ns1.wordpress.com
ns2.wordpress.com
ns3.wordpress.com

Remember to remove your old name servers when you add the WordPress.com name servers.

You can find your domain provider in this list of common providers for further instructions.

Option 2: Contact Your Domain Registrar

If you’re not comfortable making the change yourself, you can contact the support department at your domain registrar for help. Here is a sample email you can send them:

I would like to use my domain with a WordPress.com site. In order to do this, I need to point my domain’s name servers to the following:

ns1.wordpress.com
ns2.wordpress.com
ns3.wordpress.com


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Instructions for Common Domain Providers

The process for changing your name servers is different for each registrar.

For convenience, we have included links to instructions for common registrars below. We recommend that you contact your domain registrar’s support department for help if you’re having trouble changing the name servers yourself.

Click here for links to common providers:

1&1

123-reg

AWS

BigRock

Bluehost

Crazy Domains

DreamHost

easyDNS

eNom

FastDomain

GoDaddy

Google Domains

HostGator

Hover

MelbourneIT

Names.co.uk

Namecheap

Network Solutions

Register.com

SiteGround

TierraNet

Wix – In addition to this linked guide, Wix also requires you to add a CNAME record for www pointing to @.


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Alternatives to Using Name Servers

While we strongly recommend that you use name servers to map your domain name to WordPress.com, there are alternative ways to connect your existing domain to WordPress.com.

Mapping with our A records

We strongly recommend that you use name servers to point to WordPress.com. However, in some cases, the domain registrar will only accept IP addresses. In those cases, you can find the IP addresses (A records) on the Mapped Domain Settings screen as shown in the following screenshot.

To find your site’s A records, go to UpgradesDomains and click on the mapped domain with the Complete setup label next to it. Click on Alternative setup using root A records to see your site’s A records.

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Bear in mind, IP addresses can change without notice, which is why name servers is the preferred method.

Finding A records to complete domain mapping.
Finding A records to complete domain mapping.
If your domain is registered through GoDaddy or 1&1

If your domain is registered with GoDaddy or 1&1, you may see an option to Connect Your Domain which can configure the DNS changes for you.

1. Go to My Sites UpgradesDomains. Choose the domain you mapped.

2. Click on Connect Your Domain.

If your domain is mapped from specific registrars, there is a Connect your domain tab in the Manage Domains section, in the list of options.

3. Click the Configure Your Domain Settings button.

4. Log into your account at your domain registrar (or DNS provider) when you see the prompt.

5. Confirm that you want to set your domain to point to WordPress.com

6. This will create the necessary DNS changes at your registrar/DNS provider to use your domain here.


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After Changing Name Servers

  • The domain might not load right away. It can take up to 72 hours for your domain name servers (DNS) to update fully. You will also likely need to clear your browser’s cache. 
  • Once you confirm that your site loads when visiting your domain, you can follow a few steps to set the primary domain.
  • If you had other services connected to your domain, such as email or subdomains, you may have to reconfigure the DNS settings in your WordPress.com account.
  • If you later decide you no longer want to point your domain to WordPress.com, you can log into your registrar/DNS provider to remove the DNS records and point the domain elsewhere.

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Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs)

Your domain name is an IDN if it contains language-specific characters such as ä, û, ע, ж, 字, मा. Domain registration, transfers-in, and mapping for IDNs, also known as Internationalized Domain Names, are not currently supported.


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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some Frequently Asked Questions and Troubleshooting Tips:

I changed name servers, but my domain isn’t loading or pointing to my WordPress.com site.
  • Name server changes can take up to 72 hours to fully propagate, during which time the domain might not load properly.
  • Try clearing your browser’s cache to make sure your browser is loading the most up to date information.
  • Contact your domain registrar to ensure the name servers were changed properly (and that the old ones were completely removed).
Can I map a domain to a specific page on my site?

Domains cannot be mapped to specific directories on your site, for example yourgroovydomain.com/about-us

Can I have “www” before my domain name?

WordPress.com automatically removes the “www” from all URLs. Mapping the “www”subdomain is not supported.

Your site address can still be reached at “www”, but it will always redirect to the non-www version. This is for SEO reasons; search engines prefer one version of the site address be set as the canonical URL, otherwise they will see duplicate content. WordPress.com has chosen the non-www version of your site as the canonical URL.

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