Understanding computers sometimes feels like rocket science–no matter how far you fly on space and learn about its mysteries, it isn’t enough; the technicalities are just too complicated.
Learning how a domain works is similar. Just when you know it isn’t technical, it really is! In this article, we will describe what a domain is (all beginner-friendly, I promise), how it works, and how using a custom domain in your online forms is important.
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What is a domain?
The domain name, as defined by the Merriam Webster dictionary:
computers: a subdivision of the Internet consisting of computers or sites usually with a common purpose (such as providing commercial information) and denoted in Internet addresses by a unique abbreviation (such as com for commercial sites or gov for government sites"
To make it short, the domain name is a website’s address or website’s name. For example:
PlatoForms' is the domain name–and this is what you type when you’re looking for a website. Domain names are customizable, meaning you can alter them using your name or business name.
How does a domain work?
People have names. Our names are our identity–we use them to communicate and identify each other.
Unfortunately, computers don’t go by the name. They can’t call other computers “Tom” or “Suzy”, instead, they identify them by numbers. These numbers, or as we call them, their “names”, are technically called IP addresses.
Since computers don’t talk like us humans do, network engineers invented a domain name system–a system where these numbers can be translated into names. Because of the domain name system, we don’t have to type a computer’s IP address to search for a website.
188.8.131.52 —-> www.platoforms.com
For example, when you type “www.platoforms.com” into your web browser, the domain system will then translate this into numbers, and look for its IP address in its storage. Once an IP address is matched, it will show us the home page of the actual site.
We don’t have to memorize thousands of 192.168.1.2 just to search for www.google.com–seriously, just imagine if we have to type these numbers every single day?! Thanks, network engineers!
Why is using a custom domain for your PDF online forms important
Creating a domain name for your business is the start of your identity in the cyber world. Because of this, your domain name should be unique and different–or else, your customers will just lose your brand into the massive world of the internet, just like the easy-to-forget numbers of IP addresses.
Like your business, your online forms should speak for you. Because of this, you can create a custom domain for your PDF Online Forms with PlatoForms! However, is it really a big deal?
Well, yes it is. Here are several reasons why using a custom domain on your PDF online forms is essential:
- It makes the form link appear more professional.
It’s a bit weird to receive a form invitation link with random names–not only does it looks unfamiliar, but it also screams oddity. Sharing a PDF link with your custom domain will help your customers recognize your brand–and will also speak about your company’s professionalism.
- It promotes your brand and website.
Sharing a PDF link with your own domain will also speak for your brand identity! Custom domain links are the first thing your customers see–don’t let the chance pass by easily. Make it memorable by inputting your brand into it!
- It looks cleaner and more organized.
Sending a link to your customers with a standard name is more organized than several links with different names. Imagine seeing an online form link with different names every single day–confusing, I know.
- Your online form link will be easier to remember
Think of this: Your customers will remember your brand–it will always be inside their heads. Sharing a PDF link with your brand helps them remember you; that the next time around you’d be sending a form, they don’t have to go “What is this?” again–they just click it–because they remember you. Your brand staying on the links of your online forms should stick with your customers!
So, how are you going to create a URL link for a PDF document?
After creating and completing your online PDF form using your PlatoForms account, PlatoForms automatically generates a form URL. This URL is shareable–you can copy this and embed it on your website, or just directly send it to your clients for them to complete the form.
Pro tip: Embedded forms don’t need a custom domain–it’s automatic.
Default URL at the beginning of published forms in PlatoForms:
To replace this with your custom domain–use the domain masking configuration. To do this, go to the setting option after you log in, and click “Custom Domain”. In this option, you can type the domain you’ll be using. Click the option “Update”. You will see a CNAME value after doing this. The domain name that you put will have a domain manager option that you can access to change the DNS (domain name system). Once the CNAME is updated, PlatoForms will generate an SSL certificate–this is helpful for it can protect the sensitive data on your online forms. HTTP/SSL protection is needed for added security, so provide Let’sEncrypt protection. This includes your custom domain.
Take note: If you’re setting up a custom domain, you need permission to access your domain DNS records.
To change your DNS details, log in to your domain registrar and locate the DNS management. Upon locating it, you can add your CNAME and point it to PlatoForms. Just a little patience–this will change in 24-48 hours.
Remember: Your sensitive data is safe with us. Together with your custom domain, keep you secure with Let’sEncrypt protection.
Your custom domain is now set–our restful API will return your form URL with your domain URL. You can now share PDFs online with your online PDF link–with your brand name, of course.
Needing more instructions on how to create a URL link for your PDF document? For more detailed information regarding our custom domain, refer to our documentation page.