Answerbase gives you the ability to have your growing knowledge base of content sit on your own domain under a subdirectory or subdomain of your site, depending on your preferences. This article will cover how to manage this for your Answerbase account.
Setting Up Answerbase on a Subdomain
Setting things up so your growing knowledge base sits on a subdomain of your site is relatively easy to do, and most customers choose this route because of that. It allows them to ensure the content grows on a subdomain of their site similar to something like this:
All you need to do to manage this setup is to follow these steps:
- Setup Your Subdomain: Go to the service where you manage your domain (Godaddy or other) and create a new subdomain as desired. Many customers choose something like answers.yoursite.com but you can set this up to be whatever you'd like.
- Create Cname Value: For your subdomain you've setup, you'll need to create a cname record and point it to cname.answerbase.com and save. Many times this will work immediately, but similar to any domain propogation it may take up to 48 hours to for the word to recognize what the cname record is for your domain name. You can test this on services like DNSChecker.org where you can manage a DNS check to ensure the cname record is recognized.
- Answerbase Domain Settings: In your Answerbase Administration Dashboard, go under "Customization > Domain Name" and you'll see an option for "Simple" domain setup, which covers the instruction for a subdomain. Click on "Manage Settings" and then select "Use My Own" and enter the value of your subdomain in the field. Save those changes.
- Test Your Subdomain: The propogation of your cname can be immediate, but it's a general rule that can take up to 48 hours in order to fully propogate, so don't be surprised if you don't see the changes reflecting on your subdomain immediately. Use the tool at DNSChecker.org to confirm that it has propogated. Once it has, go to your subdomain and you should see your Answerbase knowledge base reflecting there.
Setting up a subdomain is a very quick and easy way of ensuring that your knowledge base is sitting on your domain and reflecting your branding. If you'd like to upload your own security certificate that covers your custom subdomain, you also have the ability to import your own security certificate
through your Answerbase administration portal.Setting Up Answerbase on a Subdirectory
Some sites prefer to have their knowledge base of content sit on a subdirectory within their domain, so something similar to this:
The "answers" name of the subdirectory can be whatever you'd like, and you can manage this setup via a Reverse Proxy. You'll need to set this up where you host your domain, and you configure it so the hosting provider knows that anybody trying to reach pages under the /answers/ subdirectory will be serving pages that reside at Answerbase. For example, when you sign up to Answerbase, by default your knowledge base sites on an Answerbase subdomain like yoursite.answerbase.com. What the reverse proxy configuration does, is it lets your hosting provider know that any visitor to the "answers" directory....it will look to and display the content that is showing at yoursite.answerbase.com. This is all done in the background, so your users and search engines just see the content and pages as being on your own subdirectory.
How to set this up on Answerbase:
- Confirm Your Current Answerbase Subdomain: In your administration portal, navigate to "Customization > Domain Name" and you'll see the answerbase subdomain that your knowledge base currently resides on. It will be something like yoursite.answerbase.com. Note that Answerbase subdomain down for the next step.
- Setup the Reverse Proxy: Most servers have a plugin pre-installed where you can enable reverse proxy, as this a commonly used technique to accomplish this goal. What you'll want to do is establish a reverse proxy for your subdirectory (for example: yoursite.com/answers) and then ensure it reverse proxies to your Answerbase sudbdomain that you noted above.
- Identify Your Subdirectory in Answerbase: In your administration portal, navigate to "Customization > Domain Name" and under the "Advanced" option click on the "Manage Settings" button. You'll see a filed there where you need to identify your domain and subdirectory that applies to Answerbase....so you'll enter something like yourdomain.com/answers in that field (or whatever you choose as your subdirectory value). Save those settings.
- Test Your Subdirectory: Test the subdirectory on your site and confirm that everything works well. You should be able to browse seamlessly just as if Answerbase didn't exist, so the content that would have previously resided on "yoursite.answerbase.com/page-name" when it was on the Answerbase subdomain...will now be accesssible when you visit "yoursite.com/answers/page-name". To both users and search engines, your knowledge base has become just another subdirectory within your site...and is recognized as such.
We hope this article is helpful and let us know if there are any questions regarding your setup or configuration, and we'll make sure you're taken care of.