Blogger Custom Domain – Subdomain vs. Naked Domain (Use Both)

NOTE: This post will be easier to understand for those who have registered their domains at 1and1.com and for the rest, this post will surely give you a hint to redirect your custom-domain to Blogger blogs in the best possible way.

After publishing the recent post on BloggerStop about a free domain offer from 1and1, I received a number of mails and queries from fellow bloggers with similar doubts on how to redirect their newly registered domains to their already existing Blogger blogs.

Although I have already posted a tutorial explaining the procedure to redirect a custom domain to a Blogger blog, but due to recent changes at Blogger some new issues have cropped up in this process.

An important and major issue of concern to many bloggers is the restriction imposed by Blogger on using naked-domain-names (domain names without WWW or any other sub-domain) with their blogs as a custom-domain.

As for many newbie bloggers, even this problem is difficult to understand, so let me first explain it in simple terms, what exactly the problem is:
The Basics…
A domain name, just like an email address, is simply a name registered online where a website can be hosted:
example.com is a domain name (example.net, example.org and example.info – all these are also domains with different TLDs).

Now anything to the left of these domain names (including WWW) is a sub-domain of that domain:
WWW.example.COM is a sub-domain of example.com
BLOG.example.COM is again another sub-domain of example.COM

WWW.example.INFO is a sub-domain of example.INFO

Now the Problem…

In Blogger you can use any custom (SUB)-domain (XYZ.example.com) instead of the blogger address (SOMETHING.blogspot.com) presently in use. That means, once you do this redirection, whenever somebody enters the address example.com s/he will see your blog’s (SOMETHING.blogspot.com) content but the address shown in the address bar will be example.com

Earlier Blogger allowed naked as well as sub-domains to be used as custom domains. But recently it has changed its system and now it ONLY allows sub-domains.
Therefore, if presently your blog address is “SOMETHING.blogspot.com”
then you can only use sub-domains like “www.EXAMPLE.com” or “blog.EXAMPLE.com” as your new custom-domain and NOTEXAMPLE.com

And due to this restriction you MAY lose some of your visitors who may enter your blog address as “EXAMPLE.com” instead of “www.EXAMPLE.com“. Moreover it may create some SEO issues too.

And The Solution

To avoid these problems, you should redirect your naked-domain (EXAMPLE.com) to your sub-domain (WWW/BLOG.EXAMPLE.com) where your blog is located. Now, this can be done in three different ways:

1. A simple url-redirection (strictly NOT advisable)

2. Through DNS management (by changing CNAME records) – the general method advised by Blogger, but NOT by me (but REMEMBER that cname method is the only method you should use while redirecting your sub-domain to your Blogger blog).
This is because, once you redirect your domain to Blogger using CNAME, then you will lose your email address located at your domain (admin@example.com or info@example.com etc.)

3. Through DNS management (by changing “A Name Records“) – Advised by both Blogger and Me.
To do this, once you have redirected your sub-domain to your Blogger based blog, go to the DNS management section of your naked-domain (example.com) and edit its “A Name Records” paste exactly this value in to it:

216.239.32.21


Once this is done, go to Blogger.com -> Settings -> publishing
and mark the tick-box “Redirect EXAMPLE.com to www.EXAMPLE.com


Advantages of following this method:
1. Your blog will be hosted at the sub-domain your choice…(WWW.example123.com or BLOG.example123.com)

2. Your domain will also be redirected to your sub-domain, so if someone enters this address:
example.com/2010/07/test-post.html (a test post on your DOMAIN)
s/he will be redirected to this address:
www.example.com/2010/07/test-post.html (the test post on your SUB-DOMAIN)

3. You can access your emails on the same domain name, for example admin@example.com or ANYTHING@example.com

NOTE: To create emails on your domain name, along with editing the “A Name Records“, you have to change the “MX Records” too. And edit these MX records to point them to “Google Apps” where you can create up to 50 free emails and use the free space and features provided by gmail to store your emails.

In case, you have more doubts please use the comments form below which may solve others queries as well.

References:
1. A naked Domain
2. Using Custom domains on Blogger – Part 1 and Part 2
3. Image credits: Gp2b

44 thoughts on “Blogger Custom Domain – Subdomain vs. Naked Domain (Use Both)

  1. You cannot use 301 redirects in Blogger, as Blogger doesn't allow hosting.
    When BloggerStop was registered, at that time it was allowed to use naked domains as custom domains, so my blog is located at Bloggerstop.net
    while http://www.Bloggerstop.net redirects to bloggerstop.net (non-www version) by the above mentioned CNAME redirection.

  2. Great post buddy.But can u explain in detail regarding the email setup and stuff on email which yu were talking abt.i'm confused with email setup in 1and1

  3. If you just want to use naked domain as your blog's address(like me), just put a space in front of the whole domain.
    For example, you put " .DOMAINNAME.COM" in the blogger setting page.
    Then this would work!

  4. @Anonymous,
    Yeah I will explain it in detail in my upcoming post.

    @Rae
    Thanks for the tip. I have updated the post with that info. I'm sure this will help a number of other bloggers too.

  5. Sai….What a timing you have. I just open my mail box to ask you abt this & i found my answer.

    thanx a lot I'm giving comment after finishing dis work.

    I have two questions..

    1….In your blog every link has icon which showing it will open in a new window?

    2…..I want to add Ad Banner Space just like u did??

    Waiting 4 ur reply

  6. Haha glad to know that Kashif…

    1. In my blog, while interlinking I use naked domain to link any page (including the homepage) of my blog. And to link any other (external) site, I use the prefix(sub-domain) WWW. So, that gives me a difference between my own links and links to external sites, and based on this difference and using this method I show those icons along-side external links.

    2. Refer to this tutorial: Add 125×125 ad-spots to Blogger blogs.

    3. As Google's Gmmail is all about mail-management, so I am sure that it is better than 1and1 mail. Moreover Gmails POP3/Forwarding and it's lab further improves user mail-experience…

  7. I've a question. My current blog is for example http://example.blogspot.com. However, I have an e-commerce website say http://www.example.com as my primary website, now i want my blog to be a sub domain of my primary e-commerce website i.e http://www.blog.example.com. I've some concerns about it. I want the layout, design, my widgets etc to remain the same as currently it is. Another thing is that I want to use the blogger control panel instead of FTP or CMS etc.

    Can someone please help me explaining if this is possible & what are its technical requirements?

  8. You can easily make those changes, and in Blogger the controls will ALWAYS remain at Blogger-Dashboard itself. NO FTP/CMS ever.
    Simply follow the tutorial and your new blog address will be:
    blog.example.com

  9. hi,

    ive just recently got a domain name but not from the company you provided. but i have tried the instructions you have given to eliminate the www. (who uses that anymore anyway, seriously?). but it doesnt work.

    when i type in a space before .helloembrace.org

    blogger would say – URL contains illegal characters
    even if without the "." and just the space, it would say another blog has been hosted there already.

    pls help. 🙂

  10. Don't put any dot before the naked domain.

    1. First try the cname records method (at your domain registrar). Then at blogger, use that "<space>naked-domain.com"

    2. If it is not working, then use the "A name records method", under the A name, enter the IP address, and simply add the naked-domain to your blogger blog.

    In any case it may take a few minutes-hours to transfer the domain from your domain-registrar to Blogger.

  11. I am having no luck with getting my naked domain to work through 1and1. 🙁

    I am trying to do option 3 of the original post. I want to fix this right. So, I just enter 216.239.32.21 in the advanced DNS section, right? Then, I check the mysite.com check box in my Blogger dashboard, right? Am I missing something?

    http://www.mysite.com is working, but not mysite.com.

    Thanks!

  12. Hey Eric, it usually takes some minutes to hours (or rarely days) to see the changes in effect.
    If you are talking about your domain stackedwallet, then it has already started working. If that's not the domain you are referring to, then please mention the domain name here.

  13. Hi Sai
    I already have a domain http://www.rsoutlet.com and it is set up to forward rsoutlet.com to http://www.rsoutlet.com

    Now I wanted to open up another blog on blogger say, xyz.blogspot.com and have it point to a subdomain such as xyz.rsoutlet.com

    I setup a sub-domain at my host GoDaddy, and in my new blog's settings in blogger, under publishing, I have the site pointed to xyz.rsoutlet.com – at the moment, going to this url says that "This website is temporarily unavailable…."

    Could you comment on whether I have done the right steps?

    Thanks so much, buddy.
    Redshifter

  14. Hi Sai
    i have registered at co.cc and done all correct but now i am waiting since 3h for my www.***.co.cc subdomain respectively ***.co.cc, is that normal or do i have to wait the whole 48h like they said, if there is a query i move back to blogspot

    what do you suggest?
    btw thanks for all your articles i like to read through your site, keep it up

  15. @ Redshifter,

    Yes you have done it correctly, I hope you have got it working by now.

    Hi Jenny,

    Well in some cases you may have to wait for 48hrs. If it takes more than that then contact their support.

  16. Hey, thanks for such a great guide. I have been scouring the internet for days trying to resolve my problem regarding being able to access my website http://www.domain.com but not domain.com. I used the articles on Google aswell as many other peoples guides but they werent nowhere near as informative or helpful enough as this one. Again, thanks!

  17. Thanks for this great information, now my blog sound professional it is because it is now at dot com domain name not in dot blogspot, thanks for this, because of this post, i did the customizing my blog on blogger.com, i really appreciate your effort in writing this article, please keep on blogging and we'll wait for your next blog updates, hopefully your next article is more about SEO and make money online blogging.

  18. Please help – I have a live site hosted on 1and1 I have now redeveloped this site as a blog on blogger.
    1) I want to point my domain name to the new blogspot
    2) I dont want to loose my emails which is currently hosted and works at 1and1

    I can not afford to mess around to ensure I am not loosing emails 🙂

  19. Hello, everybody!
    I have a problem. Hope someone knows the answer.
    I have a site with custom domain and multiple subdomains like abc.example.com, def.example.com, xyz.example.com. I've done all the necessary steps described above and have faced a difficulty. Once I mark the tick-box "Redirect example.com to abc.example.com", the tick-box gets marked in the settings tab of blogs with subdomains def.example.com and xyz.example.com as well automatically. And instead of redirecting from example.com to abc.example.com it provides redirect to def.example.com. Do you know how to fix the issue? Thnx

  20. Pavan @(pavanh)
    Hi ,
    Thank you for a nice post , i started my blogging with subdomain and now i moved to custom domain i just wanted to ask you on moving from subdomain to custom , whatever backlinks which were achieved from subdomain will it be lost or redirected to custom domain

    Waiting for your reply
    Thank you

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