How to Set Up a Custom Tracking Domain on Namecheap

Setting up a custom tracking domain can boost your email deliverability.

If you use your email service providers’ CTD, you use the same CTD as most customers.

These customers include spammers and bad guys who don’t care about indirectly damaging your domain’s sender reputation.

With a custom CTD, you’re no longer at the mercy of other senders. It’s your domain and only your actions are going to affect its standing.

Additionally, the tracking links in your emails will match your sending domain, which helps your deliverability.

With a custom CTD, internet service providers will consider your emails less likely to be spam, resulting in better inbox placement.

Today, we’ll show you how to set up a custom tracking domain on Namecheap, one of the more popular domain providers.

Setting Up a CTD on Namecheap

Step 1: Create a subdomain

To isolate your tracking activities from your main website, you should set up a subdomain.

This will protect the reputation of your main domain in case your emails get spam complaints.

Setting up a subdomain can be done in Namecheap. However, it is common for the name servers to be pointed to your hosting company.

In that case, you must set up a subdomain in your hosting provider’s account.

Either way, since the subdomain will not contain actual content and will only be used for tracking purposes, setting up a CNAME DNS record is enough to do the job.

Here’s how to do it:

In Namecheap

  1. ➡️ Log in to Namecheap
  2. ➡️ Go to “Domain List”
  3. ➡️ Click on the corresponding “Manage” button for your domain
  4. ➡️ Go to “Advanced DNS”
  5. ➡️ Click on “Create new record”
  6. ➡️ For type, choose “CNAME”
  7. ➡️ In the “Host” field enter the name of your subdomain. This can be whatever you want, but “tracking” would work. The subdomain would then be: tracking.yourdomain.com.
  8. ➡️ In the “Value” field, you should typically add the tracking domain provided by your email service provider, for example tracking.emailserviceprovider.com.
  9. ➡️ Click the checkmark to save your record

In your hosting account

  1. ➡️ Log in to your hosting provider
  2. ➡️ Go to your domain’s DNS settings or records
  3. ➡️ Add a new CNAME record
  4. ➡️ In the “Host” or “Name” field, enter the name of your subdomain. Again, this can be anything you want, but for clarity’s sake, we recommend “tracking” so your subdomain would end up as: tracking.yourdomain.com.
  5. ➡️ In the “Value,” “Hostname,” or “Points to” field, enter your ESP’s tracking domain, for example: for example tracking.emailserviceprovider.com. This should be provided to you by your ESP.
  6. ➡️ Click save

Your new record can take up to 72 hours to be active.

Step 2: Add the custom tracking domain to your email service provider

With your CTD ready, it’s now time to add it to your ESP’s account.

This step will differ depending on your ESP, but the process will go like this:

  1. ➡️ Log in to your EPS’s account
  2. ➡️ Navigate to “Settings” or “Domain settings,” or similar
  3. ➡️ Find an option called “Tracking domain,” “Domain tracking,” “Custom tracking domain,” or similar.
  4. ➡️ Add your CTD. Example: tracking.yourdomain.com
  5. ➡️ Click save or enable

Don’t Forget Other Components of Your Technical Setup ⚠️

Setting up a CTD will help you land in your audience’s inbox more, but there’s more to do to optimize your deliverability.

Remember to also set up your SPF, DKIM, DMARC, and MX records. Combined with your CTD, they will help you avoid the spam folder.

To top it off, you should also invest in an email warm-up service like lemwarm.

lemwarm will gradually increase sending volume and frequency so your email traffic doesn’t raise a red flag with internet service providers.

If you just start sending hundreds of emails a day, ISPs will think you’re a spammer.

lemwarm’s features have been designed to build and protect your sender reputation.

It takes 3 minutes to avoid spam forever

Discover how to apply these tips on lemwarm and avoid spam forever.