This feature enables you to configure a custom domain to be used in the messages instead of the standard MoEngage Domain. A custom domain is a personalized domain name that lends your brand credibility and authority and differentiates you from the competition. Oftentimes, it becomes your brand’s online identity. For example, it is so common for customers to say Google it when they mean to say use Google Search. Google’s domain name is Google.com, and it is everyone’s favorite moniker for the company’s search feature!
The custom domain feature enables you to use your custom domain in the URLs sent in the message body. When you add a URL or a link to your message body in an SMS campaign, the URL will be shortened with the standard MoEngage Domain ux.mnge.co, if the Shorten and track URL(s) checkbox is checked. If the checkbox is unchecked, the URL will be displayed as added in your message.
Domain: A domain is that part of the URL that directs your users to a web server to fetch the web page content they are looking for. To visit your webpage, users must type the domain name containing the location of your site's files. A domain is the principal part of the URL that denotes to whom this URL belongs. This helps the user identify the brand sending them this URL in their communication.
Domain Name: a unique string owned by the brand that can reflect the brand name without confusing the user. Examples: moengage.com, google.com, wikipedia.org. A custom domain is a purchased domain that allows you the flexibility to choose the name. For example, if you wish to name your domain YourBrand.com, you must purchase the domain name.
DNS: Domain Name System. It is popularly referred to as the phonebook of the internet. It maps the domain name to the actual address where the resource is located and helps the browser load the web page being requested. For example, if you were to type google.com on your browser, the DNS server would look up the actual location where the website’s pages are located and return them to the browser. The browser would then fire a request for that specific location and get the webpage to be displayed. For more information, refer to DNS.
CNAME: A canonical name or CNAME record is a type of DNS record that maps an alias name to a true domain name. For more information, refer to CNAME Record.
Click Tracking: A feature that tracks which users have clicked on the links added in the message. This is facilitated by MoEngage’s proprietary technology. When a user clicks on a URL in the message body, the click action is tracked, and this event is logged. This is helpful in understanding click behavior and engagement.
MoEngage's Standard Domain for Click Tracking: ux.mnge.co
The 'X' in the API Endpoint URL refers to the MoEngage Data Center (DC). MoEngage hosts each customer in a different DC. You can find your DC number (value of X) and replace the value of 'X' in the URL by referring to the DC and API endpoint mapping here.
How do CNAME Records work?
If your domain name is yourbrand.com and you add the following link to your sms body: http://www.yourbrand.com/producregistrationpage and shorten it using MoEngage’s default URL shortening, the URL will appear as ux.moengage.com/register
If you want your shortened URL to be YourBrand instead of ux.mnge.co, you should add a CNAME DNS record to your DNS, as shown below. The shortened URL would then be: yourbrand.com/register
When you request a web page, here’s what happens:
- A DNS request is created to look up the actual location where the resource is located for the domain name in the URL.
- The DNS resolver finds the actual location mapped to the domain name (this is called resolving the DNS) by fetching the CNAME record.
- This CNAME is returned to the browser. The CNAME helps the user's app/browser understand the server domain that needs to be requested.
- The browser sends a new DNS request for the IP/domain mapped to the CNAME, and the web page for the requested resource is located and returned.
Setting up a Custom Domain
To set up a custom domain, do the following:
- Look up a popular domain registrar (A domain name registrar provides domain name registrations to the general public. Example: GoDaddy and Google Domains)and look for a domain name that is not used.
- Purchase the domain name. You can also purchase a custom domain from your web hosting provider. In case you have a custom domain already, skip to the next step.
- Add a CNAME Record in your DNS to point to the MoEngage domain. For more information, refer to How CNAME Records work.
- Set the Time To Live (TTL) to 30 mins for this record.
Note: If your DNS provider doesn’t support 30 min TTL, select the minimal TTL time frame supported by your DNS provider.
- Add and verify the domain in your DNS. Verification may take up to thirty minutes.
Configuring a Custom Domain in MoEngage
Navigate to the MoEngage Dashboard and select Settings -> SMS & Connectors. Select the Custom Domain tab and do the following:
- Ensure that the points mentioned in the prerequisites are completed. This would mean that you have a custom domain that has been registered.
- Add the custom domain to the Custom domain name field and click Verify. Do not add http:// or https:// to the domain name. Add the name as added in the CNAME record.
- Once verified, you get a message stating that the custom domain is verified, as shown below.
- Toggle Shorten & track URL by default to enable shortening and tracking of links added to SMS messages using the custom domain. This will turn on the shortening and tracking of the URL for all SMS campaigns. This ensures that tracking is automated and never missed. Also, it can be unchecked in the campaigns or turned off in the settings here when you do not wish to track clicks.
How does the custom domain appear in campaign creation previews?
When you add a link to the message body and the Shorten and Track URLs checkbox is checked, the preview will display a shortened link, as shown below.