CNAME and Domain Glossary


A Record

An A Record is similar to a CNAME but is used to map to an IP address if your website’s IP address is fixed and stable. Your hosting provider can provide you with an A record and configure the IP address for you. Unbounce uses dynamic IP addresses, so A records cannot be used to connect a domain with Unbounce. An A record can only be used to create a 'naked' domain, and in addition to using a CNAME record. 


A CNAME or Canonical Name record is used to set up an alias for your domain; by adding a CNAME record to your domain’s DNS you can direct visitors to your webpages on Unbounce’s servers.


The Domain Name System is the system by which the internet tracks domain names. Your DNS record is basically like your address listing on the internet.  


The domain is your internet address. Like in the yellow pages, this is how someone on the internet can look up your specific website. 

Types of Domains: 

Naked Domain

Usually websites are listed with a www in front of them (like"). A naked domain just removes the www and allows your customers to find you even without the prefix - so instead of it would just be


A subdomain is a way for you to create different sets of content within your larger domain - similar to how apartments work, you may live in the same building but have numbers designating your specific apartment. You can have numerous webpages by having specific subdomains under your main root domain. (Example:, or would be two possible subdomains.)


You can further expand the webpages within your subdomain by adding subfolders. (Example: and try/ are two possible subfolders.)

Root Domain

The root domain is the of or the of

Custom Domain

Your domain that you registered with your hosting website. This domain is custom only for you and allows you to enable landing pages to appear with your domain using Unbounce's CNAME mapping or Wordpress plugin features.

Domain Hosting Service

The company that hosts your domain.  Some examples are GoDaddy, DreamHost, and 1&1.

GDPR Compliance

GDPR stands for General Data Protection Regulation, a new set of laws passed in the EU and put into regulation in May of 2018. This has made data protection and privacy much more important and stringent for any of your customers that are in the EU (European Union) or the EEA (European Economic Area). For more information see our page on GDPR compliance.


Secure Socket Layer is a security technology that allows the client’s information to be transferred in an encrypted format over your server, allowing your customers’ data to remain secure and private. This is especially important with the new GDPR Compliance laws.


Top Level Domain is the suffix or the last segment of your domain name: .org, .net,  or .com are some examples of a TLD.


Transport Layer Security is a security technology similar to SSL. TSL works slightly differently as SSL but its main purpose is the same - to allow your client’s information to be transferred as an encrypted format over the server.  


TTL is your Time To Live value. This is the amount of time your server holds on to older cached information before it refreshes to show any new changes. If your custom domain doesn’t seem to be working properly, you may just need to wait the amount of time indicated before your custom domain will work.


URL or Uniform Resource Locator is an address for a web page within a domain. It's what you type into the address bar to find a page. (Example: