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Add Your Own Domain to Your WordPress.com Blog

Now that you’ve got a nice blog on WordPress.com, why not get your own domain to brand your site?  Here’s how you can easily register a new domain or move your existing domain to your WordPress site.

By default, your free WordPress address is yourblog’sname.wordpress.com.  But whether this is a personal or a company blog, it can be nice to have your own domain to really brand your site and make it your own.  Or, if you already have another website and want to use WordPress as a blog for it, you could even add blog.yoursite.com or any other subdomain.

Adding a domain to your WordPress.com is a paid upgrade; registering and mapping a new domain to your account costs $14.97 a year, while mapping a domain you already own to your WordPress blog costs $9.97 a year.

Getting Started

Login to your blog’s dashboard, click the arrow beside Upgrades in the sidebar, and select Domains.

image

Enter the domain or subdomain you want to add to your site in the text box, and click Add domain to blog.

sshot-2010-05-25-[22-48-45] 

If you entered a new domain you want to register, WordPress will make sure the domain is available and then present you a registration form to register the domain.  Enter your information, and then click Register Domain.

sshot-2010-05-25-[22-54-12] 

Or, if you enter a domain that’s already registered, you will see the following prompt.

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If this domain is a domain you own, you can map it to WordPress.com.  Login to your domain registrar account and switch your nameserver to:

NS1.WORDPRESS.COM

NS2.WORDPRESS.COM

NS3.WORDPRESS.COM

Your DNS settings page for your domain may be different, depending on your registrar.  Here’s how our domain settings looked.

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Alternately, if you’re wanting to map a subdomain, such as blog.yoursite.com to your WordPress blog, create the following CNAME record on your domain register.  You may have to contact your domain registrar’s support to do this.  Substitute your subdomain, domain, and blog name when creating the record.

subdomain.yourdomain.com. IN CNAME yourblog.wordpress.com.

Once your settings are correct, click Try Again in your WordPress dashboard.  The DNS settings may take a while to update, but once WordPress can tell your DNS settings point to it, you will see the following confirmation screen.  Click Map Domain to add this domain to your WordPress blog.

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Now you’re ready to pay for your domain mapping or registration.  Depending on your purchase, the information and price shown may be different.  Here we’re mapping a domain we already have registered, so it costs $9.97.  Select your method of payment, enter your payment information or signin with your Paypal account, and continue as usual.

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Once your purchase is finished, you’ll be returned to the Domains page on WordPress.  Try going to your new domain, and make sure it opens your blog.  If it works, then click the bullet beside the new domain, and click Update Primary Domain.  Now, when people visit your WordPress site, they’ll see your new domain in the address bar.  You can still access your blog from your old yourname.wordpress.com address, but it will redirect to you new domain.

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Conclusion

Having a personalized domain is a great way to make your blog more professional, while still taking advantage of the ease of use that WordPress.com offers.  And, if you have your own domain, you can easily move to your site traffic to a different hosting provider in the future if you need to.  The process is slightly complicated, but for $15/year we found this one of the best upgrades you could do to your WordPress.com blog.

If you want to see an example of a site created with WordPress, check out Matthew’s tech site techinch.com.

And, if you’re just getting started with WordPress, check out our series on how to Start your WordPress.com blog, Personalize it, and Easily Post Content to it from anywhere.

Matthew digs up tasty bytes about Windows, Virtualization, and the cloud, and serves them up for all to enjoy!

  • Published 06/4/10

Comments (18)

  1. Lloyd Budd

    Slightly complicated because of the nature of the operation, or is there a better way to do this? (Someone else doing this better?)

    I ask because I’m a member of the WordPress.com, and am eager to make it better if we can.

  2. jon_hill987

    Just out of interest, if you go down the $15 path, is there a way to get an (IMAP) email address @thenewdomain? Or would you need to register the domain with a host that provides email and then link it with your WordPress account?

  3. Matthew Guay

    @jon_hill987 – If you buy a domain from WordPress.com for $15, then yes, you can add Google Apps for free to the domain. With that, you can get Gmail on your domain, so you’d have yourname@yourdomain.com going though Gmail. Full IMAP/POP3 support. We’ve got an article coming up soon that details exactly how to add Google Apps to your account, and it works great.

  4. jon_hill987

    Thanks, I shall keep an eye out for that article.

  5. Matthew Guay

    Ok, here’s the article … Add Free Google Apps to Your Website or blog – http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/18891/add-free-google-apps-to-your-website-or-blog/

    It’s got full directions on how to do it with a WordPress.com site, so should be easy enough. Let me know if you hit any snags!

  6. DetBux

    great information!Thanks!

  7. BoyzMZ

    Thank fo Information :)

  8. ankarajeoteknik.com

    waow… the great post today. thank you.

  9. Barbara

    thank you for the Add Your Own Domain to Your WordPress.com Blog it was so helpful

  10. Mike

    if you add your own domain does anyone know if this impacts SEO value at all? right now my domain at xxx.wordpress.com has tremendous SEO value and I don’t want to lose that.

    Also, by transferring to your own domain does that mean features available via WordPress.org would be available or not?

    Thanks for any info.

  11. Matthew Guay

    @Mike – Your existing yoursite.wordpress.com address will retain its SEO value, as it will still go to your site if you add a new domain. However, the new domain does not add WordPress.org features to your WordPress.com blog … it only gives you a unique domain. You can add Google Apps to your new domain on WordPress.com if you’d like, though – http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/18891/add-free-google-apps-to-your-website-or-blog/

  12. Bella@Internet Marketing

    Thanks, any advantages of adding your own domain besides personalization?

  13. Rjoli

    How can I get an email address with my WordPress domain name that I have registered? I want an email that reflects the name, but can’t see how.

  14. Erin

    Hi Matthew.

    I’m looking at signing up for a wordpress.com blog and not sure whether to get a subdomain http://www.myname.wordpress.com or to buy a domain http://www.myname.com and bring that to them. My main concern is SEO power. I know you’ve already answered one question on this but I’m still not totally clear. If I bring my own domain to wordpress.com will I still have the same SEO grunt as I would with a subdomain on their url?

    Thanks in advance.

  15. Matthew Guay

    @Erin – You’ll have the same SEO advantage with your own domain on a WordPress.com site as you would on a self-hosted site; should be no difference at all.

  16. Ruth

    Matthew,

    I linked my custom subdomain (i.e., blog.mysite.com) using a CNAME entry to my main domain. When I use a CNAME does it “link” the SEO achieved with the blog (i.e., blog.mysite.com) to my main URL (i.e., mysite.com)

    In other words, how does a CNAME work in terms of SEO for the main site when I “import” or use the subdomain, (i.e., the blog?)

    Thank you!

  17. Dale

    I may have a silly question. I just registered my domain with Godaddy. Now do I have to purchase the Domain Mapping Upgrade or can I just change the DNS settings in my Domain Manager? Also, can I simply forward my new domain to my WP address?
    Thanks,
    Dale

  18. rohit singh

    hi i am in lot of confusion that i have a website and it is a fitness website and now i want to start a fitness blog but i am confused whether to start a different blog with different domain name or to use a sub domain like i saw one website 2 createawebsite.com and blog as subdomain.what are the benefits of using a blog as subdomain instead of making a different blog with with different domain name. Can you please clearify and help me.

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