Setting up a Custom Domain
When you first sign up with Near Me, you are given a default subdomain to use (i.e. example.near-me.com). You can also set up and use your own custom domain (e.g. www.example.com). The process of setting this up assumes that you have some familiarity or experience working with: Domain name registration, SSL, and DNS configuration.
If you have not registered a domain, you will need one in order to move forward. We recommend that you take a look on Namecheap.com and search for the domain you have in mind. Once you have successfully registered your new domain, return to this guide and follow the steps below.
**At any point you can test your domain to ensure it is working properly here - https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/analyze.html
Getting started with your custom domain is a four step process:
- First you will need to generate a Certificate Signing Request and a Private Key file for use later in the process of setting up your domain.
- Then, you will need to purchase an SSL certificate - which ensures that any sensitive data coming from your site is protected, such as credit card numbers and user passwords. Note that your default Near Me domain is already secured with SSL.
- Next, you will use your SSL certificate to generate a DNS Name. This is the Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) that you will use to point your new domain at our servers. Our system generates this for you, so all you need to do is fill out a brief form using the information you receive from your SSL provider, and you'll be ready for the next step.
- Finally, you will need to use the DNS name you generated to point your domain at our servers. This works much like an IP address, but with some important distinctions, which we cover in a subsequent guide
What is a CSR?
- A CSR is used as a form of verification used by your SSL provider, and will often need to be provided upfront while purchasing your certificate (for instance, RapidSSL requires that you provide a certificate signing request during the checkout process). The CSR can easily be generated through your admin dashboard.
Who purchases the SSL certificate?
- As the domain registrant, you will purchase your wildcard SSL certificate. The process of purchasing your SSL certificate through RapidSSL is detailed in step 2 of this guide.
What is the DNS Name?
- The DNS name is generated in your admin dashboard, and will be the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) that you use to point your domain at our servers. Typically, you would use an IP address and an A Record to point your domain in the right direction, but in this case your marketplace is on something called an Elastic Load Balancer, which will distribute your traffic across multiple IPs. Because of this, you need to use one central DNS name with an ANAME record (if you are using DNS Made Easy) to point your custom domain at the Near Me servers. The process for generating a DNS name is detailed in step 3 of this guide.
What is DNS Made Easy?
- DNS Made Easy is the service that we recommend using to manage your DNS, and will allow you to point your domain at our servers when you are ready to do so. You will need to use a special kind of record in order to set up your custom domain, which can be done painlessly with an ANAME in DNS Made Easy.
- Note that you may be managing your DNS through your domain registrar - for instance, many people will purchase their domain through GoDaddy, and use the GoDaddy DNS services to point their domain in the right direction. The standard way of setting up a domain (i.e. using an A record to point your domain at an IP address) will not work in this case, and so we have found that these default DNS services are generally too limited to accomplish your goals.
- The process of working with DNS Made Easy to set up your custom domain is detailed in step 4 of this guide.
I have a custom domain and SSL certificate, but certain browsers still warn me that the site is not secure
- You may have assets on your page that are not hosted on HTTPS. Please ensure that all images, videos, icons, etc. are hosted on a server with a domain that is also SSL certified. If you are unsure how to host assets appropriately, please reach out to Near Me support and we can help further.
- If you are certain that all assets on your page are hosted appropriately, it could be a problem with the certificate itself. For instance, you may have entered the wrong certificate chain when generating your DNS name. Please contact your SSL provider and Near Me support in cases like this, and we will assist further in finding the appropriate resolution to the problem.