Setting up HTTPS for your landing page custom domains

ConvertFlow will automatically secure your landing pages (HTTPS) if you display your landing pages on convertflowpages.com

However, if you want to use a custom domain on your website for your landing pages, you can do so. Before following this guide, first follow the steps to  set up a custom domain for your landing pages.

Once you've configured a custom domain for your landing pages, you'll notice that your landing page on your custom domain is using HTTP by default, rather than HTTPS (secured by SSL). 

This is because there isn't a SSL certificate specific to your custom domain configured yet. Due to the dynamic nature of custom domains, SSL certificates should be set up on the domain level of your website for your site to be accessible over HTTPS, using a service that will automatically renew your certificate for you each year.

While it isn't required for your custom domain to use HTTPS to use ConvertFlow's landing page feature, it is recommended to take the next steps below to secure your custom domain using HTTPS. 

Here are some free options for setting up an automatically renewing SSL certificate for your custom domain:

Option #1 – Using CloudFlare's Free SSL Certificates (Recommended)

CloudFlare has become the gold standard these days for DNS management, due to their free DNS management service, free SSL certificates for your domain names and their free CDN, which reduces your server costs greatly and improves your website performance globally.

Once you've bought a domain name with the domain registrar of your choice, head to CloudFlare and create a website for your new domain name. Then, in your domain registrar's settings, point your domain's name servers to CloudFlare's name servers. 

You can now manage CNAMES for your domain name within CloudFlare's dashboard, their free CDN will cache your website assets (pages, images, scripts, etc) for you globally to speed up your site, and HTTPS will be enabled for your sub domains.

This is indicated by the orange cloud icon that displays for each sub domain you add.

Follow the  custom domain set up guide to add a CNAME to CloudFlare that points to your reserved sub domain on convertflowpages.com

Once that's set up, you'll want to force your ConvertFlow pages to load over HTTPS. To do this, you'll need to adjust a few settings in CloudFlare's dashboard.

First, head to the Crypto tab in the dashboard. Then, set your SSL settings to "Full".

Then, head to Page Rules and add a page rule for your ConvertFlow landing page domain name to force load it using HTTPS. 

Paste your ConvertFlow custom domain URL in their page rules builder, and replace the URL path (what comes after the last / character) with an asterisk character like so:

http://subdomain.website.com/*

This will tell CloudFlare to apply the page rule to all of the possible URL paths on your sub domain.

Make sure the page rule setting is set to "Always Use HTTPS" and then click "Save and Deploy".

And you're done! Your ConvertFlow pages will now use HTTPS when accessed through your sub domain.

Option #2 – Using Amazon Web Services' Free SSL Certificates (Advanced)

Not using CloudFlare but still need to set up a secured custom domain for your ConvertFlow landing pages?

Follow this step-by-step guide to use Amazon Web Services (AWS) to set up a free SSL certificate that will work with any DNS manager that you may be using. You can also follow this guide if you need to upload a custom generated SSL certificate that you've purchased.

Because setting up an SSL certificate using Amazon may seem complex, it may help to have your web master set this up for you. However, there's no coding involved and it takes just a few minutes if you follow this guide step-by-step, so we'll hold your hand through it.

Creating a CloudFront distribution

In AWS, click on the services dropdown in the navigation and then click through to CloudFront. Click "Create Distribution". You'll be taken to a long form.

Start filling out the form using these options:

  • For "Origin Domain Name" and "Origin ID", enter your reserved sub domain on convertflowpages.com. You can grab this from the custom domain setup instructions.
  • Set "Origin Protocol Policy" to "HTTPS Only"
  • Set "Query String Forwarding and Caching" to "Forward all, cache based on all"
  • Next up, write your desired custom domain name (sub domain and root domain) in the "Alternate domain names (CNAMES)" field

To move forward from here in the form, we'll need to generate a SSL certificate using Amazon's free SSL certificate service or upload our own certificate.

Generating a free SSL certificate

Choose the "Custom SSL Certificate" option. There's nothing to enter in the field just yet. Instead, click the button "Request or Import a Certificate with ACM". 

A new tab will open where you'll be taken to the ACM part of AWS, where we will generate a SSL certificate and be given a code that we can paste in the custom SSL certificate field in that long form we haven't completed yet. 

Enter your custom domain in the field and click "Next".

On the next page, there's nothing to set. Click "Review" to continue.

The same goes for the next page, just click "Confirm and request".

You'll then be taken to the ACM overview page, where you should see your newly generated certificate showing as "pending". Rightfully, Amazon requires an additional step to validate that you do in fact control the domain name you're securing.

Click on the domain to open up the validation instructions. You'll be given CNAME records to add to your DNS manager, that once added, will tell Amazon you manage the domain name.

In your website's DNS manager, create a CNAME named as the first value in the table that you can copy, and point it to the last value. Once you've done that, refresh the page and you should see that it's been successfully validated, confirming to Amazon that you have permission to manage the domain name.

Next up, click into the domain and find the "ARN" value. 

Copy that and head back to that previous tab with the long CloudFront distribution form that we hadn't finished submitting yet.

Finishing the CloudFront distribution form

We're on the home stretch! Now that you've generated a SSL certificate and copied it's ARN code, we can head back to that form we were filling out and paste the copied ARN code in the "Custom SSL certificate" field.

This essentially tells Amazon CloudFront to use the free SSL certificate you had just generated.

With that part done, scroll all the way down skipping the remaining settings, and click the blue "Create Distribution" button at the bottom right corner.

You'll then be taken to your Amazon CloudFront distributions. Click into the distribution you had just created, indicated by the "origin" column.

Once you've clicked into the details of your CloudFront distribution, you'll see a domain name value that's on cloudfront.net.

Copy that CloudFront domain name next to the "Domain Name" label, and then head back to your DNS manager.

As if we were following  the instructions given to point your sub domain to ConvertFlow's servers, instead we're going to point our sub domain to Amazon's CloudFront servers, which will serve your ConvertFlow landing pages over HTTPS using the free SSL certificate we had just generated.

In your DNS manager, create a CNAME for your custom domain and point it to the copied cloudfront.net domain name instead of pointing it to ConvertFlow's servers.

If you've already pointed the CNAME to convertflowpages.com, you'll need to edit your CNAME record and point it to the secured cloudfront.net domain.

Once you do that, you'll be able to access your ConvertFlow pages on your custom domain via Amazon CloudFront's servers, which will secure your landing pages using HTTPS.