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How to Connect a Custom Tracking Domain to Instantly.ai (Step by Step)

If you're using Instantly.ai to manage your email campaigns, you could easily track where your users are coming from using a custom tracking domain! Here's how.
Updated February 27, 2023

Are you looking to set up your own tracking domain for your Instantly AI campaigns?

But what exactly is a custom tracking domain? They're simply outbound link addresses that you can customize to match your brand.

Over the next few minutes we'll show you a step-by-step guide on how to connect your custom tracking domain to Instantly.ai.

Let's say your company is called Juice Lab. Instead of using a boring link to track clicks and conversions, you can use a custom tracking domain like tracking.juicelab.com.

Not only does it make your brand more recognizable, but it also adds a touch of trustworthiness to your website. And the best part? It's super easy to set up! Alright, let's do it.

Adding a Custom Tracking Domain to Instantly.ai

To begin, login to Instantly and then click on the 'settings' option for the email address you are looking to connect. Remember, you can add as many domains and emails as you desire if you use Instantly, so you can do this for each one.

You'll be presented with a screen where you should scroll down until you find the 'Custom Tracking Domain' section and the checkbox labeled 'Use custom tracking domain'.

Click on the checkbox, and you'll see a few items on the screen. The only ones you need to pay attention to are 'Type' and 'Value'.

After these steps, the next thing you need to do is to visit the domain provider where you purchased your domain to edit CNAME records. These include companies like Google Domains, GoDaddy, NameCheap, or any other provider. We use Google, so we'll show you how it works using Google Domains (although every domain registrar has these options that can nearly be mirrored)

Editing DNS Records in Google Domains

Since we're using Google Domains we'll simply log in & and locate the domain you want to connect with Instantly. Click on the domain name to continue.

Afterward, you will be directed to a page that looks like this.

On the left, click “DNS”.

You will then be directed to the page shown below, where you should click on the 'Manage custom records' button.

Then click “Create a new record”. 

After clicking on 'Create new record', you'll see a few familiar items: remember the 'Host' and 'CNAME' values from Instantly? We'll need to retrieve them again.

For the 'Host' value, you can enter anything you like. I typically use 'tracking' to keep it simple.

Under 'Type', make sure to select 'CNAME', and under 'Data', paste 'prox.itrackly.com' ** without quotation marks. It should resemble the image below.

Finally, click on 'Save'. After doing so, make note of the host name, which will look like 'tracking.yourdomain'. Replace 'your domain' with the domain you are using, and make sure to include the proper TLD suffix (e.g., '.net' or '.com').

Verifying Instantly Tracking Connection

After saving the changes, return to Instantly and the email/domain you were working with. Look for the 'Your tracking domain or subdomain' field, and enter 'tracking.yourdomain'. Then, click on the 'check status' button.

Please note that it may take a few attempts and sometimes up to an hour for the changes to take effect. If you're not seeing a connection after an hour, make sure you connected the tracking domain successfully (check for typos and case errors).

If you have completed all the steps correctly, you will see the message 'CNAME Verified' and 'SSL Verified', as shown in the image below! If you see this message, you're all set!

Ok now that you've successfully set up your custom tracking domain with Instantly, you can track in-depth stats about your campaigns. Also, if you have multiple email accounts, you will need to repeat these steps for each one.

If you run into any issues, let us know in the comments below! Happy emailing!

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Written by Jonathan Garces
Jonathan is a digital marketing expert. After sending hundreds of thousands of emails, Jonathan cracked the code on what gets somebody to reply – authenticity & transparency. Jonathan writes about his emailing experiences and has quickly became the go-to guy for learning about how to connect with your target audience.
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