Using Custom GoDaddy Domain with Blogger

There are times where you’ll want to create a blog to call your own but want to keep things as simple as possible. This means no hosting fee, no complicated setup, no extra features such as custom email addresses, no sharing features, etc. You get the point. However, one thing that you might want to consider is using your own custom domain name. Even if you plan on making your blog look as simple as possible with no sidebars, fancy pictures and headers, you’ll still want to use a custom domain name to represent your site. One very popular domain name registrar is GoDaddy (I’m sure you’ve heard of them). In this article, I’ll go over how to integrate your custom domain name purchased from GoDaddy into your Blogger account from Google.

I’ve decided to create a new blog dedicated to reviewing books that I’ve read. I figured since I read a lot of books, why not publish my own reviews?  I’ve gone ahead and decided to use the Blogger platform because I really needed something simple. AnotherWindowsBlog is my main website and because of that, I spend much more time on it. Therefore, it made sense to use a self-hosted WordPress installation. I’ve ruled out a WordPress.com blog because although its free as well, it doesn’t allow you to host your own Adsense code which I’ll be doing in the future on my new blog. Anyways, lets get to it.

Purchasing a Domain from GoDaddy

Blogger/Google already have a built-in system for you to purchase your own domain name and evidently, they do so through GoDaddy as well! If you use Blogger’s method, Google will do everything for you and so you can pretty much skip the rest of this article. I like to purchase the domain name manually and then integrate it into Blogger and so that’s why I’m writing this article. No matter which option you choose though, your domain name belongs to you. Should you leave Blogger and move elsewhere (WordPress), you can do so in the future using either methods. However, it’s much easier to do so in my opinion if you purchase your name through GoDaddy themselves rather than through Google Apps. I found this the hard way when I moved anotherwndowsblog.com away from Blogger to a self-hosted WordPress.

Before doing anything, you must purchase your own domain name. Consider this the “branding” of your website. There are a lot of domain name registrars out there for you to choose from and I’ve chosen GoDaddy because it’s the more popular one. By it being popular, there are bound to be many more tutorials on how to do things with your domain name by other users than say if you bought a domain name from some other company. Luckily, the steps should be familiar enough with all the other registrars but just remember that every registrar may require different steps to accomplish the same thing I’ve listed here.

GoDaddy has a lot of sweet deals periodically. They often times have $.99 1 year new domain name registration coupons. You’ll want to check out Slickdeals often to see if you can spot one of those deals and be quick to act if you do.

You can choose to use any domain name you want just as long as it is available! The domain name I have chosen is www.anotherbookreview.com. Purchasing your own domain name is just like purchasing any other product from the Internet. The only thing you have to be careful about is attaching features to your domain name that you don’t really need. Domain names usually have a annual recurring charge. Some registrars give you a discount if you pay for future years in advance. It’s up to you what you want to do. Below are some of the screenshots I’ve taken while purchasing my domain through GoDaddy.

GoDaddy NameGoDaddy RegisterGoDaddy Domain SettingsGoDaddy CheckoutGoDaddy Account CreationGoDaddy Payment

Integrating Domain Name to Blogger

So now we’ve gotten our very own custom domain name. Next, we create our very own Blogger account, which is even easier. You literally just need a Gmail mail account and that’s it. You can create your very own email account beforehand or during your Blogger account creation. During the blog creation process, you’ll also be asked to create your own blogspot domain name, which ties into Blogger. If I hadn’t bought my own domain name from GoDaddy, my entire domain name on Blogger would be www.anotherbooksreview.blogspot.com. Because you have just created your Blogger account and no information have been submitted (I assume), I don’t think it matters what you name your blogspot address. For example, the address of anotherbookreview.blogspot.com was already taken. Therefore, I had to add an “s” after books to comply. I easily could have just used 12345bookreview.blogspot.com as well because my custom GoDaddy domain name will override it, sort to speak.

So now that you have both purchased your own GoDaddy custom domain name and created your very own Blogger account, we can now begin the name integration.

First, we need to prepare our domain name in GoDaddy. Leave your Blogger account alone for now. Log in to your GoDaddy account. You should have gotten your log in information via the email they have sent you after confirming your purchase.

Once logged in to your account, simply click on the domain name you have just recently purchased.

Domain NameYou should then be taken to a page where you’ll get to see all the information pertaining to that domain name. Scroll a bit down until you see the section titled DNS Manager. Next, click on the Launch link.

Launch

 You should now be in the Zone File Editor section. You’ll see a lot of stuff here but don’t worry. As long as you don’t change anything you’re not suppose to, nothing bad will happen! Find the section titled CNAME (Alias). Way towards the bottom, you should see a record simply titled “www”. Click on this record but do not change www. Instead, change the “@” symbol under the Points To column to ghs.google.com. You can leave the default 1 Hour option under TTL (Time to Live).

GoDaddy CNAME

This next step can be considered optional. Blogger has an option, as you’ll see a little later, to redirect “naked” domains. If someone types in your custom domain name without first appending “www” to the address, they will get an error. To remedy this problem, we need to create four simple records (called A records) that each point to a different Google server. At the very top, you should see the “A (Host)” section. By default, there should be one record listed. We need to create four records, each having a host name of our domain name without the www prefix along with the four Google servers listed below:

216.239.32.21
216.239.34.21
216.239.36.21
216.239.38.21

In the end, you should end up with something like this:

A Record

Fortunately, that’s all we need to do on Godaddy’s side of things! Pretty easy right? Oh and don’t forget to hit the big Save Zone File button! Now we head back over to Blogger’s side where things get even easier.

You may want to wait a couple of minutes or so after making your GoDaddy changes (so the information can propagate throughout the Internet)  before moving on to the next step. If you haven’t waited long enough, Blogger should spit out an error message letting you know.

Go ahead and log in to your Blogger account and hit the Settings button. Then head into the Publishing tab.

Blogger Settings

By default, Blogger will use the default .blogspot.com domain name for your blog. To change that, simply click on the Custom Domain link.

Custom DomainGoogle actually provides you with a means of acquiring your own domain name like I mentioned earlier but we already got one. So, click on the “Switch to Advanced Settings” link. Simply type in your custom domain name with the www prefix. Type in the word verification and hit the Save Settings button. If everything went correctly, you shouldn’t see any error messages. On the next page, be sure that you enable the redirect check box. This allows your readers to type in your custom domain name without having to append the www and still reach your blog. If not, they will receive an error unless you make the changes yourself within your GoDaddy account, which I’ve showed you how with the four A records mentioned above.

Advance SettingsRedirect

That’s it! You have now successfully integrated your custom GoDaddy domain name to Blogger. Immediately, I was able to access my Blogger blog using my custom domain name. However, it can take a while for the redirection to propagate throughout the Internet and during that time, you won’t be able to access your site without first appending the www prefix to the URL. Don’t freak out or panic. Give it some time. If after a day or two the redirection is still not taking place, then you’ll need contact GoDaddy or look back at the steps and see if you’ve missed something.

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Comments

  1. Hi Simon,

    Thank you for writing this article. I have a question quite related to this. I have a 5-year old Blogspot blog and I want move it to my own domain (which I am planning to purchase at godaddy.com). The reason why I haven’t started yet is because I am not sure if the 5-year old contents of my old blog can be moved to my new site without the links getting broken. I am afraid that I will lose my current blog traffic and I will have to start all over again. I would really love my new site to function exactly the same as the old one.

    Thanks,
    Ely

    • And yes, I want Google to host it. For now, I will have to rely to their free hosting service. I just want to remove the “blogspot” from my blog URL and keep everything else intact (contents, layout, etc.). My concern really is the traffic. Say someone found one of my old posts when they made a search on Google and clicked on it, will they be redirected to my old post’s new URL in my new domain?

      Thanks,
      Ely

      • Hey Ely. The good thing for you is that you are staying on the Blogger platform and not migrating your blog over to say, a self-hosted WordPress. This makes things a whole lot easier. You should be able to follow my article here to get everything up and running. Google and GoDaddy will do all the work for you and set up the redirects, which is what is needed when visitors click on your old URLs after you have transitioned to the new one.

        Don’t worry about losing your content and whatnot. Transitioning to a custom URL domain name is one of the simplest and most effective way to making your Blogger blog more professional looking without having to deal with exporting/importing your blog to another platform.

        But don’t worry. Once the redirects are in place, your old links will take your visitors to your new domain and that should preserve your traffic ranking. The other good news is if you somehow have problems with the redirects, you can easily transition back to your .blogspot domain while you get the problem fixed.

  2. Thanks for sharing these info with us! his is a great site. I really like it. Thank you for the site. May God bless you in all your works.

  3. Thanks a lot bro! Your explanation is awesome! Thanks from Malaysia!

  4. Custom domain is effective in the hosting business

  5. I could kiss you. This is exactly the tutorial I needed. THANK YOU for making it so clear and concise!

    • Awesome! So glad that readers are finding this tutorial easy to follow and understand. Feedback like yours is very encouraging so thank you! Also, your blog looks very, very nice! That plastic animal bookends project you made, especially the one with the tiger, made me laugh because it was so awesome. I’m going to recommend it to one of my friends because she’s into crafting as well.

  6. This was great! Tried another guide first but people who “get it” is often very bad to explain for us who don’t always get it… computers, oh my.

    • Awesome! Glad you liked it. That’s why my articles do feel a bit longer than most. My goal is to help users like yourself who don’t always “get it”, as you put it, the first time around by writing out more details and by supplying more pictures as well.

  7. i appreciate the simple help/guide you brought forth here.
    it helped me from the beginning to the end.
    thumbs up

  8. I like to purchase my domains through http://www.123-reg.co.uk/ dont no why just seems cheap. Just through I would mention that it can take up to 24 hours for the DNS changes to proprogate throughout the internet and if you have visited your domain before you had done the DNS changes your browser / computer will most probebly have cached the old DNS settings.

    Meaning you will need to clean your DNS cache to be able to get the new settings, usualy done via a restart or trying the following command into command prompt.

    ipconfig /flushdns

    Spam it a couple of times should work.

    • Definitely. Go with whatever is cheaper, just as long as they are reputable. I don’t think its imperative for someone to find and use the most awesome and popular registrar out there (GoDaddy as in my example) as I would rather spend that time finding a good web host instead but you really don’t want them causing you any trouble in the future for any reason. Losing your domain after you’ve put so much effort into solidifying your brand and name can have ill effects and cause you a lot of grief. I highly doubt though someone will have issues as long as they pay their bills on time.

      Thanks for reminding us about the flushdns command. Totally forgot about it. I’m sure a lot of users freak out at not being able to reach their website because of the DNS record in the cache.

  9. BlakeMalan says:

    Wow, thanks a million.  I never would have been able to get though this without your simple step by step instruction. I just finished the process. It’s not showing up yet, but I literally just finished so I’m assuming I just need to wait a little while. Thanks again!

    • Awesome job! The only part I had to wait a while before it started working was the naked domain redirection. Other than that, my custom domain was working on Blogger almost immediately after customization. Let me know if you have any problems.

  10. For those reading this article , one good news is that currently GoDaddy has $1 domain sale going. Google it for details.

    The bad news is that it is now very difficult to find a good domain now as all good one’s are nearly exhausted.

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