At Format, the way we connect domains may be different from what you have used or configured previously. This method is the only way to properly connect to your Format Portfolio site. Any other method will cause problems.
When your custom domain is set up correctly
yourdomain.com will display your Format site with
https://www.yourdomain.com showing in the web browser address (URL) bar.
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.
If your domain provider requires 2-factor authentication when accessing your account, please reach out to us via live chat once you have submitted the Domain Help Request form.
The method: three steps
You will need to complete all three steps for your custom domain name connection to work:
your-domainto your Settings > Domain > Format Address field
From your Domain Registrars control panel forward
Also from your Domain Registrars control panel make a CNAME record pointing
You need to be using your Domain Registrar's default Nameservers for the connection to work.
Format Domain Settings
From the lower-left of your Format sidebar, navigate to 'Settings'
Click 'Domain and Email'
Scroll down to the Format Address area
Replace the auto-generated Format Address with your own unique Format Address (it is best to match as closely as possible to your actual Custom Domain name (in this example
jane-dovercourtwithout the .com or other .tld (top-level-domain extension)
Website Domain: your website can always be accessed through your Format address (in this example
Click 'Connect Your Domain' to access and enter your existing custom domain name (see screenshot below)
Add your existing Custom Domain Name
Add your unique existing custom domain name. If you have previously used the same domain name with another Format website it will not be possible to use this without it being disconnected from the other website, contact our support team
Follow instructions to update your domain registrar/provider DNS Zone settings to connect to your Format site (see below)
Click 'Save Changes'
Failed Connections happen when the correct connection settings have not been sent, or propagated (updated) from your domain registrar
BEFORE you click the 'File a help request' link ensure you have completed the remaining steps in this guide below:
Log into your Domain Registrar's Control Panel
Access 'Website Forwarding' (also called 'URL redirect')
Create a forward from
Use a '301 permanent' forward/redirect (if possible, a 302 redirect is OK)
Do not use masking, stealth or a hidden redirect
www.yourdomain.com are two separate web addresses (
www.yourdomain.com is a subdomain of
You need to add this forwarding so that
yourdomain.com will automatically load
DO NOT forward to your Format Address (in this example
jane-dovercourt.format.com) - this is the most common issue with domain connections.
Create or Edit 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
yourdomain.format.com and loads your site for the visitor.
On your registrar's site access your DNS settings (this is usually under 'DNS Settings', 'DNS Records', 'DNS Zone Editor', etc. )
Create (or edit the CNAME record if one already exists for
Set host www to point to yourdomain.format.com (example only)
This CNAME record connects your domain to Format. It takes requests for
www.yourdomain.com and sends them our servers and allows your site to be seen.
Check domain connection
Changes made at your domain registrars control panel are not usually instant. They can take up to 24 hours to fully propagate and connect.
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 along with a 'secure padlock' icon).
Custom Domain Connection Confirmed
Status updated to show as 'Connected'
Your custom domain should connect within 24 hours once all settings here, and your domain registrars DNS records have been set correctly
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 email@example.com We’re here to help!