Doman mapping is a process that redirects and points URLs elsewhere to your primary hosting account or your main domain. This practice is pretty useful for those who have WordPress Multisite and multiple sub-domains. In the following, we have showcased a detailed tutorial about what is WordPress domain mapping and how to use it.
What is WordPress Domain Mapping
In some cases, you might have multiple domain names to match different search queries. If you map them to your primary domain names, your readers will always end up at that primary domain, even if they actually land on your other domain names initially.
In addition, if you have a sub-domain to showcase your blog area, you can map your primary domain to that sub-domain if you want your readers to check your blog firstly after they entering your website.
To put it simply, once you have set up the WordPress domain mapping, your readers can always be redirected to your ideal website and contents.
Besides, this practice also gives great conveniences for IP modification. If you need to change your IP address, you only need to make changes on your primary domain, without the need to change anyone else that are mapped to your main domain.
Domain Mapping for WordPress.com
If your website is based on WordPress.com, your domain name simply looks like https://yourdomain.wordpress.com/. This kind of URL is not good for both search engines and human readers. In this case, you can register a new domain and map the old URL to your new one, creating a professional looking for your site.
Step One – Map Your New Domain
Firstly, you can go to this Domain Page and click the Map It button if you’ve already purchased a satisfied domain name. Or, you can choose from the listed domains that the system gives to you. Then, you need to enter your domain registration details and pay the registration fee of $13.
Step Two – Change The DNS
Contact your domain registrar and ask them to change the initial name servers to the following DNS address.
NS1.WORDPRESS.COM NS2.WORDPRESS.COM NS3.WORDPRESS.COM
Now, you can back to the Domain Page, enter your new domain and click the Go button.
Step Three – Wait for Domain Mapping
Generally, it takes about 24 hours for DNS to be fully updated. After that, you can go to My Domain of your dashboard and choose your new domain as the primary domain.
Domain Mapping for WordPress.org
If you are using WordPress to set up a self-owned website, we highly recommend you to have a try on the WordPress MU Domain Mapping plugin.
Here, we have to note that this plugin is not the common kind you have used. It cannot be installed via your WordPress dashboard. Instead, it requires a manual installation.
Step One – Install the Plugin Manually
You firstly need to download its zip file from WordPress.org. Here, you can get two files named as domain_mapping and sunrise.
The first file needs to be put into your mu-plugins folder. If you do not have this folder, simply create one under your wp-content folder. As for the second one, you can put it into the wp-content folder directly.
As the sunrise file cannot be loaded by default, you now need to edit your wp-config file and enter the following code to activate this file,
define( 'SUNRISE', 'on' );
Step Two: Configure Domain Mapping Plugin
Now, you can have a Super Admin option from your WordPress dashboard, from which you can find a Domain Mapping button. By clicking it, you can enter into the configuration page. Here, you should enter the IP address of your domain server. Or, you can enter the CNAME record that points to your server.
After that, you can define some advanced options such as the remote login and permanent redirect settings, all can be decided based on your needs.
Step Three: Map the Domain
Here, you need to locate the website that you want to map, and then enter the Tools tab of its WordPress admin and click the Domain Mapping option. Then, put your target domain into the blank space and set it as your primary domain. Now, you have finished the domain mapping already.
Special note – The above mentioned steps help you achieve the domain mapping for your WordPress Multisite and sub-domains easily. However, if you want to map an outside domain, you should firstly connect it to the same server of your primary domain. For instance, you can transfer it or edit its DNS settings to point to your server IP address.