Office Support / Office 365 Admin / Domains

Troubleshoot website issues after you add your custom domain in Office 365

Setting up your website with your domain in Office 365 can be challenging. There are DNS records to set up, you have to work with several websites, and the DNS system is slow and nitpicky. If you’re having trouble with your website after adding your domain to Office 365, read on to see if the steps here help.

Note   The SharePoint Online Public Website information in this article applies only if your organization purchased Office 365 prior to March 9, 2015. If you purchased Office 365 after March 9, 2015, use an Office 365 website hosting partner.

Get help with one of these issues

People can’t get to my website outside of Office 365

People don’t see my Office 365 website when they type my domain name

People don’t see my website when they type my domain name without the “www.”

If these troubleshooting steps don’t help in your situation, try posting a question in the Office 365 community forums. They’re a great resource, including Microsoft support agents who can help if you’ve tried the steps here and are still stuck.

People can’t get to my website outside of Office 365

What you see:

When you or other people type your domain name into a browser, for example, www.fourthcoffee.com, you see an error that the website isn’t found (such as a 404 error). The website worked fine before you added your domain to Office 365.

Why it happens:

If you choose to have Office 365 manage your domain's DNS records, you change your nameserver (NS) records at your domain registrar to point to the Office 365 nameservers. After you make that change, Office 365 manages the DNS for your domain. This lets Office 365 easily set up email and other services for you.

But if you already have a website with your domain name, the Internet starts looking for that website at Office 365, because that’s where the NS records say to look for everything on your domain. The site’s not there, though; it’s still hosted where you set it up. So the browser can’t find the site, even though it’s still set up where you created it.

What you can do:

Choose one of the following:

  • (Recommended) Change DNS management for your domain so that you manage DNS at your domain registrar or DNS host instead of having Office 365 manage DNS for your domain. Then make sure the correct CNAME record is set up at your DNS host to point to your website. Contact support at your DNS host if you have questions.

  • Set up redirection from Office 365. Redirection tells the Internet to look at another location for your website when people type in your domain name, and people will now see it when they type your domain into the browser. Learn about adding an A record to point to the IP address of your website.

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People don’t see my Office 365 website when they type my domain name

What you see:

You have a public website in Office 365 and you've added your domain to the service. But people don’t see your Office 365 website when they type your domain name into the browser, like www.fourthcoffee.com.

Why it happens:

If you have a public website in Office 365, you can set it up with your domain name, but you have to take some extra steps to get it working.

What you can do:

Follow the steps to set up your website in rename your website address to your custom domain.

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People don’t see my website when they type my domain name without the “www.”

What you see:

When you or other people type your domain name into a browser without the “www.”, for example, http://fourthcoffee.com, you see an error that the website isn’t found (such as a 404 error). The website address works fine if you include the “www.”—for example, http://www.fourthcoffee.com.

Why it happens:

If Office 365redirects people to your website by using a fully qualified domain name instead of an IP address, the root domain address without "www.” (like http://fourthcoffee.com) won’t work. Why? It has to do with the way that simple DNS record redirection works.

What you can do:

To make sure people can get to your site using a root domain, you can use a company that provides URL redirection services. The company can give you an Internet link to redirect people to your website by using the fully qualified domain name.

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Applies To: Office 365 Admin, Office 365 Small Business Admin



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