How to Transfer Domain from Godaddy to Squarespace?

WebHostingAdvices Team | 🕒 Last Update: June 18, 2021

Squarespace is one of the best platforms out there for blogging. If you already had your domain name with Godaddy, you can easily transfer the domain to Squarespace. Please note that we will not connect the domain to Squarespace. Instead, we will transfer the domain from Godaddy to Squarespace.

Transferring Domain Vs Connecting the Domain

squarespace homepage
Transferring the domain means to move the entire domain to Squarespace. You can then renew and manage the domain name directly from Squarespace. Godaddy will no longer be in the picture. Whereas, connecting a domain means you will keep the domain in Godaddy but the domain name will point to Squarespace.

Now that you can know the basic difference, we can talk about it more.

Transferring the domain name from Godaddy to Squarespace or just connecting godaddy domain to squarespace, what you should do?

Honestly, if you are new to Squarespace, you can just connect your domain instead of transferring it. Once you are familiar with Squarespace and you have made your mind to use Squarespace, you can then transfer your domain from Godaddy to Squarespace.

If you transfer it to Squarespace, many things get easier and less time-consuming. For example, you can point the domain name with just one click. You can renew the domain from the same dashboard.

So, there are many similar advantages. Therefore, if you want to use Squarespace, you should surely transfer the domain name too.

Enough with the difference, now we will see how Squarespace’s domain management works.

Overview of Squarespace Domain Management

Before you transfer, you need to keep in mind some things.

  • Once you make the transfer, you can’t manage it from Godaddy. The entire domain will be managed only from Squarespace
  • Your domain needs to be at least 60 days old. This is not Squarespace’s rule but a general condition for domain transfer.
  • The domain shouldn’t contain Squarespace or SQSP words in it.
  • You will have to pay a one-year renewal fee when transferring. These are often referred to as transfer fees but you will get one extra year. So, if your domain expires on March 2021 and you transfer it, you will have to pay the fee and it will add one more year after transferring. So, your expiry date will be March 2022.
  • The domain must be in their supported TLDs. Don’t worry, Squarespace supports almost all the TLDs.
  • The fee depends on the domain. However, the transfer (renewal) fee starts at $20. For the .com domain name, the charges are $20. You can view the price list here.

Beginner’s Doubts and Questions (Godaddy to SQSP)

Now, if you are transferring the domain for the first time, you will have many doubts in your mind. We will clear all the doubts here.

To begin with, the first thing you should know is that it’s not mandatory to transfer your domain name to Squarespace to use it. You can simply connect it.

However, if you wish to transfer it, you don’t need to have to use Squarespace’s platform as your hosting. You can use any hosting you want.

Even if you transfer the domain, you will OWN the domain name. Squarespace will just manage the domain name. Therefore, you still have ownership.

Many people have this myth, they think Godaddy or any provider will not let them transfer the domain. However, that’s untrue. You can surely transfer the domain anytime you want. If you need any help from their side, they will even help you in completing the process.

Lastly, if you want to transfer a subdomain to Squarespace, it’s not possible. You can only transfer Top Level Domain (TLD) to Squarespace.

Steps on How to Transfer Domain from Godaddy to Squarespace

Make sure you have your account ready in both the side. Login to both the account. Once you have it, you are all set to make the transfer.

Step 1: Verify the Details

Before we get into the transfer process, you will have to make sure that the information in your domain name is correct.

Open your Godaddy account and head over to My Products > Manage.

godaddy manage domain name

You will see the contact details. Make sure that all the contact details including your email address are correct. If it’s not correct, you can change it.

Please note that you will only have to change “Administrative Contact Information” and nothing else. If you make the changes to registrant information, your domain might be locked and it will delay the process. So, only change the “Administrative information”. You can click on “Use for all contact types”.

godaddy contact information whoisIf you have enabled privacy protection, you will have to disable it before transferring. Go to your domain and scroll a little bit. Inside it, there will be an option to downgrade Privacy Protection. Just click on it and turn it off. You might have to give further verification (2FA).

remove privacy domain godaddyStep 2: Unlock your Godaddy Domain

The domains are locked for security purposes. If you want to move it from the registrar (in this case, Godaddy) to another registrar (Squarespace), you will have to unlock it.

You can scroll a little bit and unlock your domain. At the bottom, you will see that the domain lock is “On”. Just turn it “OFF”. You have to change the status to “Unlock” and it will be done.

unlock domain name godaddyAlternatively, you can also Go to “Additional Settings” on the Godaddy domain control page and do the same.

Step 3: Get your Godaddy Authorization Code

Your next step is to get the authorization code. This is a unique code which you will need to transfer.

Again, you can scroll and look for the option “Transfer domain away from Godaddy”.

get authorization code godaddy

Now, you will have to click on “Continue with Transfer”.

godaddy domain transfer checklist

Afterwards, just copy the authorization code. Keep it safe somewhere. We suggest you create a notepad file and save it.

godaddy authorization codeYou will then see the authorization code in the domain.

Alternatively, you can find your authorization code in your mail inbox as well.

godaddy authorization code emailNow, we are almost done with Godaddy’s part.

Step 4: Start Squarespace Transfer

You can now open the Squarespace tab and log in to your account.

Go to the Settings option on the home page. Now, head over to Domains > Use a Domain I own.

You will now have to enter the name of the domain you want to transfer. It will then ask you to verify the transfer. You can click on “Transfer to Squarespace”.

Once you click on it, it will ask you for the authorization code. Enter the authorization code and that’s it.

Step 5: DNS Settings

Once you hit the continue button, it will ask you to verify all the DNS records.

Turn everything “ON”.

There will be three options.

  1. Point to Squarespace: Make sure it is on. You can change CNAME and A record to point the domain to Squarespace if it’s not already there.
  2. Keep other DNS records: This is your choice. If you want to transfer the emails, you will have to remove the DNS records and point it to the nameserver. As of now, we will keep the MX records as it is (we will surely see how to change it later on).
  3. Move Nameservers to Squarespace: You will have to move the NS to Squarespace. In most cases, you can change the MX records too. As of now, we will keep it on.

Therefore, make sure all three are pointing to Squarespace. This will make sure that the transfer process goes smoothly without any problems or issues.

squarespace dns settings

The most important option for us is the first one, you will need to create two CNAME records in your Godaddy DNS settings, The first CNAME line you can get the “Host” value from your “Squarespace DNS Manager“.

As for the second record, add it exactly as you see it in the image above.

NOTE: In case you already have CNAME records in your Godaddy dns settings, in that case you need to edit them instead of creating new ones.

Step 6: Review and Payment

Now, you have almost reached the end. You can review all the details. Once you verify them all, you can click on continue.

It will ask you for the payment (of course). As we have seen earlier, it will renew the domain for one year once you make the payment.

squarespace transfer confirmationSo, you can fill up the billing information and continue with the payment. If you have already added the billing information to your Squarespace account, you can select the credit card from it and then continue. It’s surely self-explanatory. We will directly move on to the next step instead of wasting more time talking about the “How to make a payment?”.

As you might have guessed, this is not the end. We have one more step to do.

Step 7: Confirm the Transfer

Once you do all these steps from Squarespace, you will have to confirm them from Godaddy.

Check your email, you will see an email from Godaddy that requires action from your side. You will have to confirm that it’s you who is transferring the domain from Godaddy to Squarespace.

Just click on the confirm button and your process will be started.

If somehow, you didn’t get the email, you can also log into the Godaddy account and click on the notification about the same.

Once you confirm the changes, your process will begin. Within a few hours (sometimes days), your process will be completed and your domain will start showing in Squarespace.

You can open your Squarespace account to see if there are any errors. If you followed the steps, there won’t be any errors. However, it’s always a good thing to check the error box.

If there are any errors, you can redo that particular step.

Once the process is completed, you will get an email confirmation about the same.

Handling the Errors

Sometimes, you might face some errors when you are transferring the domain name to SQSP. A couple of these errors are common transfer errors whereas some of them are only related to Squarespace. Either way, we will see the solution for all.

Domain Lock Error: This simply means that you haven’t unlocked the domain name. Make sure you have followed step 2 correctly.

Authentication Code: If you haven’t added the auth code, you might see this error. You can copy the code as mentioned in step 3 and then paste it here.

DNS or NS error: If you are getting DNS or Nameserver error, you need to make sure that the name servers are pointing to Squarespace. Now, if you are facing this error after the transfer, you can change the nameserver settings by going to Squarespace domain management and then clicking on Advanced settings. You will see the option to change the name server.

Refer to this link for more. However, if you are facing this before the transfer, you can change the nameserver from Godaddy’s DNS settings. Open your Godaddy account, head over to Manage DNS, and change the nameserver to Squarespace’s nameserver. Refer to this link for more information about this.

Pending Transfer: If you are seeing this message, make sure you have confirmed the transfer from your email as we mentioned in the last step. If you have already confirmed it, there is nothing to worry about. The domain transfer may take some time and that’s why it’s showing pending.

NOTE: Usually for the transfer takes between 1-3 days to complete.

What to do After Transfer?

Once you transfer your domain to Squarespace, here are some things to keep in mind and some of the things that you should do.

  • If you want to make it your primary domain, you can head over to Home Menu.
    Clicks on Settings > Domains. You will see a “?” sign somewhere.
    Click on the question mark sign and search for the domain. You will then see the option of making it primary.

    make primary domain squarespace

  • We recommend you not to add a G-suite account until the transfer is completed.
  • You might not receive emails until the transfer process is completed. This is because DNS propagation takes time. You will have to wait until the process is completed.
  • That’s pretty much it. Once you make these changes, you can put your focus back on the website.

Final Words

To conclude, this was all about how to transfer the domain name from Godaddy to Squarespace. We have covered all the steps you will require to do all the things. Missing one step might give you the error or might delay the process. Therefore, we highly recommend not to skip any step and follow all the steps carefully.

Further, we have clarified all the steps you need to follow with screenshots. So, you can surely follow all the steps easily. Make sure you also check out the “What to do after transfer section” to know the next steps.

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