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Addon Domains - The Walkthrough

Addon Domains and How to Use Them

Many seasoned webmasters may already know what an addon domain is, but others do not. This article walks through how to set up add on domains, and how to make the most of this incredibly useful feature. Let's get started!

What is an Addon Domain?

An addon domain is a fully independent domain that is created from within your hosting control panel, mainly cPanel. They are used if you are looking to host multiple websites sharing the same server, but they are treated as separate websites of their own. You can have your primary domain tied to your hosting account, just like normal. Using addon domains, you can host additional domains from your account, if allowed by your hosting provider. Now, I know it's easier to follow images, so let's show you how to actually make them!

Step 1: Requirements

Before we start, you will need the following already in place:
  • A current hosting plan with a hosting company
  • The ability to have addon domains. Some hosting companies don't allow this for some plans, so check first!.
  • The domain that you will want to add to the hosting account; make sure it's registered!
  • Name server information for your hosting. This is normally found two ways:
    • Located in the bottom left portion of cPanel
    • In the welcoming email that your hosting may have sent to you when you first started with them

Step 2: Configuring Addon Domains in cPanel

First, log in to cPanel, which is provided by most quality web hosts. Next, navigate to "Addon Domains" under "Domains," as shown below. Once there, type in your domain name, a folder to place it in, and FTP access information. Now, we need to upload content to our newly created domain so it can actually work! To do this, we are going to use the File Manager that comes with cPanel. You can use FTP, but to make things easier for this guide, we're sticking to the manager that is given to us. From the cPanel index:

When asked what directory to open, choose the "Web Root". This will allow you to see your new directory you just made, in this case, After your directory loads, look for the site you just made. It will be a folder that has the name of that the addon domain you made. In my case, this is what mine looks like:

This is where you can upload all of your content to your new website. Go ahead and upload the files now. Give it some time, it could take a bit. If you use FTP, it may go quicker, but that is beyond the scope of this tutorial.

Step 3: Setting up the DNS

Before you can actually start using your new site, you will first need to point it to your hosting. Remember above when I pointed out that you will need to know your name servers? Well, this is where that information plays a part in the setup. Don't worry, this information is normally easy to obtain. You could find this information in the following way:
  • Can be found in your cPanel (unless your web host has modified cPanel and removed it)
  • In the welcoming email your hosting provider sent you
  • Try using and enter your domain
  • If all else fails, open a support ticket with your web hosting provider.
Once you know this your name servers, head over to your domain registrar and update the DNS name servers. After updating the DNS, you should allow some time for the new information to update around the Internet. tHis may take up to about 12 hours. After this is done, try heading over to your new website and it should work! I hope this guide has helped you in some kind of way. I use addon domains regularly, because they allow me to make the most out of my hosting, which is always a good thing. Good luck with your websites and if you need any help with this guide, feel free to send me a PM on ForumPromotion.

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