Change your domain name with 4 easy steps
Category : Server Hosting Domain
In this article, we’re going to talk about some of the reasons why you’d want to change your domain name. Then we’ll walk you through the process in four simple steps. Let’s get started!
The process of changing your domain name is very simple, although the ‘right way’ involves more than simply purchasing your new domain. You’ll also want to make the process as seamless as possible for your visitors, so let’s take a look at how to do it.
Step #1: Choose a New Domain Name and Assign it to Your Website
Choosing a new domain name is a highly personal decision, but there are a few aspects to keep in mind to ensure you make a smart one. We’ve previously devoted an entire article to walk you through that process, so check it out before settling on a new domain.
When you’re ready, you can register your new domain through our platform. If you’re an A2 Hosting customer, you can simply assign that name to your existing website. However, for other hosts you’ll need to dig into their knowledge bases to find the correct process.
Step #2: Rebrand Your Website’s Design
Depending on your choice of domain, you’ll likely need to update aspects of your site’s design to reflect it. For example, your logo will likely need an update, but the same goes for any other element that alludes to your former domain name. For example:
- Your About page if your site has one.
- Your website’s footer, which often includes copyright information.
- The ‘tagline’ of your site, which is the text that appears on a browser’s tab when you open it.
- Any miscellaneous references within your content.
Fortunately, making these changes is relatively straightforward, although you’ll need to make sure you’ve removed all references to your previous domain on your site before pressing ahead.
You’ll also need to let visitors know about these changes so they aren’t left scratching their heads. We’ll talk about that shortly, but before that, let’s talk about redirects.
Step #3: Redirect Traffic to Your New Domain
Arguably the most important step when changing your domain name is to redirect users from the old one to the new one. That way, you won’t lose out on any visitors who bookmarked your past address, or happened to visit regularly.
Most web hosts (including A2 Hosting) enable you to do this from your cPanel. Just look for the icon that says Redirects under the Domains section of your cPanel and click on it:
Once you’re in the Redirects page, pick the option that reads Permanent (301) and the domain you want to redirect:
Next, type the URL of the new domain you registered, and enable the setting that says Redirect with or without www:
Once you click the Add button, you’re ready to go! Now, every time someone visits your old domain, they’ll be sent to your new one. For the time being, we recommend keeping both of them active until traffic to your former domain dies down.
Step #4: Update Your Users About Your Rebranding
At this stage, you should have a new domain name up and running. All that’s left now is to update your users about the changes to your website, such as its new URL, and the rebranding process where necessary.
This step is important because without it, you’ll have a lot of confused regulars. In our opinion, these are the three best ways to break the news to your user base:
- Add an explanatory post to your website as soon as you rebrand it.
- Use your site’s social media accounts to update your followers, and link them to that aforementioned post.
- Send out an email campaign explaining the changes to your site.
Keep in mind that you can send out multiple social media updates and emails for methods two and three. That way, you’ll maximize your chances of engaging with as many followers and subscribers and possible.
Read more Right ways to get a perfect domain name
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