Setting Up a Custom Domain on Vercel: A Step-by-Step Guide


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Having a unique online identity is crucial. Whether you're a developer or a business owner, a custom domain does just that—it makes you stand out and appears more professional. Vercel, a top platform for web app deployment, makes this process easy. Here's a simple guide to help you set up a custom domain on Vercel.

1. Get Your Domain

  • Start by registering your preferred domain name with providers like Namecheap, Google Domains, DreamHost, or GoDaddy.

  • Make sure your desired domain is available, and after registering, ensure you have admin rights.

2. Dive into Vercel

  • If you're new to Vercel, create an account. If you're already a user, just log in.

  • Once you're in, you'll be at the dashboard, which is the control center for all your projects.

3. Pick Your Project

  • Your dashboard will show all your projects. Choose which one you want the custom domain for. If you're new, you can add a project by either importing code or starting afresh.

4. Navigate to Domain Settings

  • Within your chosen project, go to 'Settings'.

  • You'll see a text field. Type in your domain (like "") and hit 'Add'.

5. Prove the Domain is Yours

  • Vercel will give you steps to verify your domain. This could mean tweaking a TXT record, DNS settings, or a CNAME record.

6. Update Your DNS Settings

  • After verification, you'll get DNS records from Vercel.

  • Add these records to your domain provider's DNS panel. This links your domain to Vercel.

7. Save and Wait

  • Once you've saved the DNS records, be patient. The changes can take a few hours to be visible everywhere.

8. Boost Your Security with HTTPS

  • Back in Vercel, turn on HTTPS for your domain. This adds a security layer to your site, making it safer for visitors. Vercel even throws in an SSL certificate for you.

9. Deploy and Check

  • Deploy your project on Vercel and visit your custom domain. If all's done right, your site should load perfectly.

  • For multiple domains on one Vercel project, use the "Edit" and "Redirect to" options.

10. Troubleshooting Tips

  • If verification fails, check if the DNS records on Vercel match with those on your domain provider.

  • Only keep the A record pointing to Vercel.

  • For subdomains, ensure you've set the right CNAME record.

  • Getting an ERROR 404? Make sure both the apex and www subdomains are added in Vercel.

  • Remember, DNS changes can take time. It may be up to 48 hours before everyone can see your site.

Final Thoughts

Setting up a custom domain on Vercel is a breeze. Just follow the steps, and you'll have a polished online presence in no time.