Already own a custom domain or just want to buy one from a host other than Google Domains or iwantmyname.com? Below are some step-by-step instructions for setting up your store with several popular domain providers.
To keep this process as simple as possible, we really recommend transferring your custom domain to a host that provides the tools to get this up and running quickly. Hover not only understands the proper way to map your domain to your Big Cartel store, but they also make transferring to their services really simple - if your domain host will let you transfer, moving your custom domain over to Hover may be your best bet. If you can’t transfer or just don’t want to part ways with your current host, we have links to provider-specific instructions below. If you don’t see your domain provider listed, no worries - just select Other and we’ll help you walk your DNS provider through the basics so they can get you set up perfectly.
- Crazy Domains
One more thing: these instructions will vary based on the provider that you choose. Sometimes providers change steps or specifics of their admin and we’re not made aware of those changes. So if you have any specific questions regarding this process, you’ll want to contact your domain provider’s support team directly.
Domain hosts will use all sorts of terms you may not be familiar with, so we’ve gathered a few key terms and explain them a bit below for you to help clear up the confusion.
Root domain is the name you registered with your domain name provider and doesn’t have anything before it, like a www. Like this: mybigcartelstore.com
Subdomain is the junk before your root domain, like www or shop. Putting a CNAME record on your subdomain is the only way to get your custom domain to work correctly with your Big Cartel store.
Subpage (or directory) is the stuff after your root domain. Like mybigcartelstore.com/shop. There isn’t a way to set your Big Cartel store on another site’s subpages. Instead, you could have shop.mybigcartelstore.com pointing to your Big Cartel store.
Domain extension (or top-level domain) is the ending of your domain. Like .com or .net
Masking is a way to try and hide a destination URL when forwarding a custom domain. It’s widely known to disrupt the way websites function, so it’s a good idea to avoid masking at all costs. Some hosts may call masking frames, cloaking, or even stealth mode - regardless of what they call it, it’s the same feature and you’ll want to avoid it.