Our Recommended Setup
All Strattic sites run on a CDN (content delivery network) which in order to work, requires a CNAME record to point to. The problem is that while you can use CNAME records for subdomains (
www.example.com), they are forbidden on the root (
example.com) by the DNS standard.
Therefore our recommended method is to use a
Once set up on a
www subdomain we then use a redirection server to forward visitors going to the
http:// and root versions to the
https://www. version. This means that no matter what URL your visitors use, they would always end up on your primary domain.
Can I use my root domain (non-www) as my primary domain instead?
Yes, it is possible to use your root domain as your primary address (if your DNS host supports it) by using an ANAME record (also known as ALIAS records or CNAME flattening). This is like a CNAME record, but it can be used on your root domain.
Therefore, you can point your domain without the
www subdomain like
example.com to our CloudFront CNAME (eg: abc123.cloudfront.net). Then redirect the
www subdomain to the root.
As this is not standard practice there are only a handful of DNS providers that offer this advanced setup.
What’s the reason for redirecting from my root domain to a WWW subdomain?
It is best practice to use one URL (either WWW or the root domain [non-WWW]) consistently throughout the site. Ideally, all URLs under the domain should have the same designation.
The goal of this is to ensure that your website rankings are not split between two different domains (such as www.example.com and example.com) by doing so, you combat the issue of duplicate content while informing search engines of your desired domain.
What if I don’t set up both the www and root domain?
If you only set up one, you may miss out on site visitors. Imagine that you have only set up www.example.com to show your website; if a visitor tried to manually type in example.com instead or follow a link to example.com, they would see an error and not end up at your website and they may give up trying to altogether.
By redirecting example.com to www.example.com, you would have captured all traffic and they would have ended up in the correct place.
Can I use both my root domain and www subdomain without a redirect?
Despite being technically possible, without the redirection in place on one of the domains, Google would consider it as two separate sites and therefore it would have duplicate content issues, which would negatively impact your SEO.