At Format, the way we connect domains mmay be different from what you have used or configured previously, but this method is the only way to properly connect to your Format Portfolio site. Any other method will cause problems.

When your domain is set up correctly yourdomain.com  will load your Format site securely with https://www.yourdomain.com  showing in the address bar. We provide the SSL certificate for your site.

Throughout this document mysite, mysite.format.com and yourdomain.com are EXAMPLES ONLY you will replace these with your own unique Format address and custom domain name.

Note: We have some registrar-specific articles in our Help section under Major domain registrars.

We can also help connect your domain. Please send us a secure Domain Help Request.


The method: three steps

You will need to do all three steps for your connection to work:

  1. Add yourdomain to your Settings > Domain > Format Address field

  2. From your Domain Registrars control panel forward yourdomain.com  to www.yourdomain.com 

  3. Also from your Domain Registrars control panel make a CNAME record pointing www.yourdomain.com  to mysite.format.com 

You need to be using your Domain Registrar's default Nameservers in order for the connection to work.


Format Domain settings

  1. From your left sidebar tap 'Settings'

  2. Tap 'Domain and Email'

  3. Scroll dow to Format Address

  4. Enter your unique website domain name this is known as your Format address

  5. The Website Domain will show your Format address

  6. Tap 'Connect Your Domain' enter your existing registered domain name (replace yourdomain.com with your actual custom domain name)

  7. 'Save Changes'


Add existing domain name

  1. Enter your existing custom domain name

  2. Link to instructions (shown below)

  3. 'Save Changes'


Add forwarding

  1. Log into your Domain Registrar's Control Panel

  2. Access 'Website Forwarding' (also called 'URL redirect')

  3. Create a forward from yourdomain.com  to http://www.yourdomain.com 

  4. Use a '301 permanent' forward/redirect.

  5. Do not use masking, stealth or 302 temporary forwarding.

The domains yourdomain.com  and www.yourdomain.com  are two separate web addresses (www.yourdomain.com  is a subdomain of yourdomain.com )

You need to add this forwarding so that yourdomain.com  will automatically load www.yourdomain.com 

DO NOT forward to your Format Address (in this example 'jane-dovercourt.format.com') - this is the most common issue with domain connections.

Some registrars do not have 'forwarding' or make you pay extra to enable. Some will not let you forward to your own subdomain.

If you are on one of these registrars, contact our Success Team for advice.


Make a CNAME record

The CNAME record from your registrar sends a request for www.yourdomain.com  to Format.

Format searches for the account that has mysite.format.com and loads your site for the visitor.

  1. On your registrar's site access your DNS settings (this is usually under 'DNS Settings', 'DNS Records', 'DNS Zone Editor', etc. )

  2. Create a CNAME record.

  3. Set host www to point to mysite.format.com

This CNAME record connects your domain to Format. It takes requests for www.yourdomain.com  and sends them to format.com


Failed Connection

  1. Failed Connections can happen for a large number of unknown reasons

  2. Please tap the 'File a help request' link and our team will help connect for you.


Check domain connection

Changes made at your domain hosts control panel are not instant.

These changes can take up to 24 hours to take full effect.

It is best to check your connection after one day.

You will know that your domain connection is working when you enter yourdomain.com and your Format site loads with www.yourdomain.com in the address bar. (Be sure to check that www is visible in the address bar).


Still not working?

You may feel you have done everything correctly, just as this article says, but your domain is still not working.

Please send us a secure Domain Help Request so we can assist you.

Still have questions? Reach us on our live chat or email us at info@format.com We’re here to help!

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