At Mobile First we frequently purchase and configure custom domains. Now, there are times when you have successfully configured your custom domain and everything is working fine, but for whatever reason you need to move your traffic from beta.mysite.com → www.newdomain.com.
No worries, we have done this before and will show you the steps!
For the rest of this tutorial, we will use the following placeholders:
old.domain.com- the current website address
www.somenewdomain.com- the website address you want to use going forward
What you need to make the required changes:
- You must be owner or admin of
domain.comso you are authorized to make DNS changes
- Your website should already be deployed to
www.somenewdomain.com. Once the DNS change has propagated, your website will be available.
Your site will be temporarily down for a few minutes - up to 24 hours depending on your configuration choices. Prepare to make this change at a time where the impact on your audience is minimal.
- Go to https://domains.google.com/m/registrar
- Choose the domain name you want to edit. Then use the menu on left to navigate to DNS settings, as shown below.
- Find section called Synthetic records. Note that “Synthetic records are a concept unique to Google Domains”. If you are working with a different domain name provider, this options does not exist.
- In the subdomain field, enter the subdomain where your website is currently hosted. For example, for
old.domain.comthe subdomain is
- In the destination URL enter the new address where you want to redirect. This may be a differnt subdomain or a completely new domain, for example:
At this point you should have a setup similar to this:
- Choose other configuration options.
- Temporary redirect vs permanent redirect - This selection determines how routers and browsers store your subdomain forwarding information. If you’re not sure which to use, choose Temporary (302).
A temporary (HTTP 302) redirect allows changes to occur to your forwarding address quickly. When you use a temporary redirect, you can force a lookup to the routing table or DNS server every time.
A permanent (HTTP 301) redirect allows browsers to cache the forwarding address. When you cache the forwarding address, you may help resolve the address faster on subsequent visits from the same browser. However, changes made to the forwarding address may take longer to occur.
- Do not forward path vs Forward path - Path forwarding lets you forward the path after the domain name to the same path at the new domain. Use path forwarding when the domain you’re forwarding to has the same structure as the current domain. If you’re not sure, leave path forwarding off
With path forwarding on
With path forwarding off
- Disable SSL vs Enable SSL
When SSL is disabled, forwarding only works for plain HTTP requests.
When SSL is enabled, forwarding works for both HTTP and HTTPS requests. However note when you select this option you may see the following warning:
This synthetic record has an error and will not function correctly: The SSL Certificate for this domain hasn’t been created yet. This process may take up to 24 hours to complete. This is simply a warning letting you know that it will take time for the change to propagate.
- When you are ready, click Add button. The record is now configured. However be patient as it will take some time for the changes to propagate. If you chose to disable SSL and temporary 302 redirect, the changes will occur faster than if you chose to enable SSL and permanent redirect. Wait at least 5 minutes and test the redirect in incognito/private mode so you are not affected by your previous browsing history.