Add Domain in User Portal

Adding a domain in the User Portal should be done when you are ready to go live with your WordPress website and should be done before modifying DNS records. This process is necessary to ensure that after DNS is pointed, your traffic can be routed to the correct environment.


Add Domain in User Portal

A new domain must be added to the WP Engine User Portal in order to properly route the domain to the intended WordPress website.

NOTE

A custom domain can be added to any Production environment. Additionally, dedicated accounts may add a custom domain to Staging and Development environments.

  1. Log in to the User Portal
  2. Click on the production environment name
  3. Click Domains
  4. Click Add Domain
  5. Enter your domain
  6. Select either:
    • I’ve purchased this domain. If you have already purchased the domain name.
    • I haven’t purchased this domain. If you haven’t purchased the domain and wish to see registrar recommendations.
  7. Click Next

At this point a new page will load and your domain has been added to the User Portal. You can exit the process now if you wish, or continue following the prompts if you’re ready to finish going live with the domain.

NOTE

If you receive the error “Domain name has already been taken”, check out the Duplicate Domain section below.

Domain Connect Options

If our system detects your domain register supports Domain Connect, you will see the name of your registrar listed on the page after adding your domain to the User Portal. Domain connect will then request you log in to your registrar so we can point DNS on your behalf. Learn more about Domain Connect in the extended guide.

If your DNS provider does not support Domain Connect, you will be provided the manual DNS connection information here instead.


Primary Domain

Your website can ultimately only resolve to only one domain in the browser, we call this the Primary Domain. The Primary Domain can impact 301/302 redirects as well as the copy environment process, so it’s important to set this correctly when going live.

The Primary Domain can only be one of the following types of domains:

  • A domain without “www”. EX: mydomain.com (Recommended)
  • A domain with “www”. EX: www.mydomain.com
  • A subdomain. EX: blog.mydomain.com

NOTE

A Primary domain cannot be a subdirectory (EX: domain.com/blog). For more information, review this guide.

  1. Log in to the User Portal
  2. Select the Production environment name from the list
  3. Click Domains
  4. Next to a domain, click the 3 dot menu icon
  5. Click Set as Primary

Domain-level Redirect

A domain-level redirect is useful because it tells the entire server to immediately send requests to one domain to another. For example, if your primary domain is mydomain.com then requests to www.mydomain.com should immediately forward. Doing this as a domain-level redirect in the User Portal will ensure the redirect can be performed as quickly as possible. It will also ensure any 301/302 redirects configured in the User Portal for a domain will function for all domains redirected to it, now and in the future.

  1. Locate the domain you wish to redirect
  2. Click the 3 dot menu icon to the right
  3. Select Add Redirect
  4. From the dropdown, select the domain you’d like to Redirect to
    • The dropdown will default to your Primary Domain
  5. Click Save Changes

Edit/Remove Domain-level Redirect

Incorrectly setting your domain-level redirects can cause a redirect loop. Additionally, if you’re attempting to set a 301/302 redirect from the User Portal and cannot select the desired domain from the dropdown, there is like a conflicting domain-level redirect set.

You may find that redirecting at the domain level impedes some other more custom redirect you’d like to do on one of your domains. In this case the domain-level redirect would need to be removed or modified. To remove a domain redirect

  1. Click the 3 dot menu next to the domain
  2. Click Edit Redirect
  1. Click the dropdown for Redirect to
  2. Select –No Redirect– or an alternate domain option
  3. Save changes

Redirecting the Temporary CNAME

Once you’ve fully gone live on your custom domain, we consider it best practice to redirect your temporary CNAME to the live domain.

When we say “temporary CNAME”, this refers to a URL that WP Engine provides to all environments based on their unique environment name. For example, if my production environment is called exprod the temporary CNAME is exprod.wpengine.com. This temporary domain should be redirected to the primary domain once I’ve gone live on example.com.

This also includes the temporary CNAMEs used when pointing DNS for advanced network and Global Edge Security.

Redirecting all of your temporary CNAMEs and a non-primary domain (in this case the “www”) will look like this:


Duplicate Domains

To ensure your domain can direct traffic to the intended environment, a domain cannot be added to multiple installs. A domain can only be applied to one environment at a time. The same domain cannot be added to multiple environments across any WP Engine accounts. You will see either of the following errors if you try to add a domain that is already associated with another environment.

If you see the following error then the domain has been added to another environment on your account. You must delete the domain name from the existing environment before adding it to the desired environment. You can use the search bar at the top of the User Portal to search for the domain across all of the accounts you have access to.

Domain name is already configured as a domain on the install "xyz". Please choose a unique name.

If you see the following error then the domain has already been added to a different account. Proceed with the duplicate domain dispute process below to prove domain ownership and have the domain moved.

Domain name has already been taken.

Users with Advanced Tools access will have the option to mark a domain as duplicate at this point. This process allows the domain to be added to multiple installs, however the domain will not be active where it has been marked duplicate. All other users should proceed with the dispute process below.

Duplicate Domain Dispute Process

If you do not have access to the environment where the domain is currently applied, you will need to verify ownership of the domain so we can move it on your behalf.

Log in to your DNS host and add the following TXT record:

wpe-verification=yourenvironmentname

Be sure to replace yourenvironmentname above record with the specific name of the environment you’d like the domain added to, or we will not be able to verify the record.

For example: If your environment is mycoolsite.wpengine.com the record would be: wpe-verification=mycoolsite

Finally, contact WP Engine Support and we will help verify ownership via this DNS record add it to your User Portal.


NEXT STEP: Update your website’s URL in WordPress

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