In Part 1, we walked quickly through pointing a domain to HostGator to be used for creating the ‘A’ record which will ultimately point to our Paper.li newspaper. Follow along below for the rest of the steps.

paper.li help file for custom domain

Setup An Add On Domain At HostGator And Create The ‘A’ Record To Point To Paper.li

Now, it’s time to get the domain setup in HostGator. This assumes you have one of the hosting accounts at HostGator that allows for unlimited domains. If so, we will be setting up an “Addon Domain.”

It’s one thing to point the name servers for a domain to your web host, but it’s also necessary to configure the domain at the host as well. Here are the steps.

1. Login to CPanel.

2. Scroll through and look for the Domains box. Click Addon Domains.

3. Type in the domain in the New Domain Name box.

4. Click the Password Generator button, put a check where it says I have copied this password in a safe place, then click the Use Password button.

Note: All of the values here (besides the domain name itself) including the password are largely irrelevant since we are pointing the domain to the Paper.li newspaper.

5. Click the Add Domain button.

6. Click the Home icon at the top left of the screen to prepare for creating the ‘A’ record.

OK, now we have to setup the ‘A’ record to point to a Paper.li supplied IP Address. As of this writing, the support article shows the IP address of: 174.129.202.202

1. Look for the box called Domains again and click on Simple DNS Zone Editor.

2. Choose your domain from the list.

3. If you do not intend to use this domain for any other purpose, delete all User-Defined Records from the bottom of the screen. There should be 4 placed there by default.

4. Under the Add an A Record section, enter the domain name in the Name box, then paste in the IP address 174.129.202.202 in the Address box. Note: a dot (.) will automatically be added to the end of the domain name, so don’t try and correct it, it has to be there.

5. Click the Add a Record button.

Finally, Add The Domain To Your Paper.li Pro Account

Now that everything is setup on the domain and web hosting end, while we wait for things to “kick in” (propagation), we can setup the domain in our Paper.li account. This assumes that you have already upgraded to the Pro Paper.li account.

1. Login to Paper.li with either your Facebook or Twitter account.

2. Go to Paper Settings (you can locate that option under your user icon from the top right side of the screen).

3. On the first page of the Settings screen, scroll down until you find Publishing & Export options.

4. Slide the slider for Custom domain to ON.

5. Type in the domain name and click the blue Save button at the bottom of the screen. Alternatively you can click the green Test my domain button to see if everything has been setup correctly.

Using A Custom Domain On Paper.li Opens Up A Couple Extra Features

Now that you have a custom domain in use for your Paper.li pro newspaper you have a couple extra options available to you. If you want to customize the header and footer of the paper with your own HTML for example, a custom domain is required.

In addition, a custom domain is necessary if wanting to use AdSense in the ad units.

With that said, please don’t think that you need to buy a new domain for this purpose. You can just as easily use a subdomain of an existing domain and rather than create an A record, follow the instructions for creating a CNAME record instead.

For example, let’s say you have a web site about Raw Dog Food called RawDogFoodExample.com. If you wanted to supplement the content with a Paper.li newspaper, you can:

a) buy a new domain called RawDogFoodPaperExample.com and point over an ‘A’ record to the supplied IP address which will point to your paper… or…

b) create a subdomain called Paper.RawDogFoodExample.com and point a CNAME record to paper.li which will ultimately point to your paper.