Configuring Google Apps with WordPress

I’ve been trying to do this for about two years and I always gave up. That is, until I came up with a really great business plan for myself and decided to put forth a considerable effort in finishing my Google Webmaster Tools.

First things first, I will assume that you have the following four pre-requisites:

  1. A WordPress.com hosted site
  2. A custom domain bought through WordPress
  3. A Google Apps account
  4. A desire to completely customize your digital self.

This post is going to serve as a compendium of step-by-step links that I have run into that have successfully helped me along the way to self branded bliss.

{How To Get Your WordPress.com Blog Verified with Google WebMaster Tools}

This one was a difficult one but a necessary evil if you want to use Google Apps with your custom domain. You have two choices:

  1. You can verify the native URL (yourblognamehere.wordpress.com)
  2. You can register your custom domain. In my case, crystiology.com.

Either way you decide, the process is relatively simple:

  • Go to Google WebMaster Tools Home
  • Add your custom domain
  • Click on ‘Verify’ -> Alternative Methods -> HTML tag
  • Highlight and copy the Meta tag.
  • Go to your WordPress Dashboard -> Tools -> Webmaster Tools Verification
  • Paste your HTML Tag in the text box -> Save Changes
  • Go back to Google Webmaster Tools and finish Verification

{Submitting your Custom Domain Name Sitemap to WebMaster Tools}

Another part of ensuring that you’re using the Webmaster Tools to its full capacity is to ensure that you submit your Sitemap for indexing. This one was a little confusing but it’s EXTREMELY simple if you have bought your domain through WordPress and also included the site mapping when you checked out.

  • Go to Google Webmaster Tools Home
  • Click on your verified domain
  • Click on ‘Add/Test Sitemap’
  • You’ll get an in-window popup which will read your domain name, followed by a text box.
  • In the text box, type ‘sitemap.xml’
  • Submit!

{Setting Up Your Custom Google Apps}

This is where we get into the fun part. This process is so that you can make full use of Google Apps and completely customize your URL’s. In my case, I wanted to log into my email at ‘mail.crystiology.com’ instead of ‘mail.google.com/a/crystiology’

  1. WordPress Dashboard -> Settings -> Domains
  2. Click on ‘Edit DNS’
  3. You’ll see a large text box with plenty of stuff in it already. Don’t edit any of the existing text, just add the following lines:

CNAME docs ghs.googlehosted.com.
CNAME start ghs.googlehosted.com.
CNAME mail ghs.googlehosted.com.
CNAME sites ghs.googlehosted.com.

 Now go to your Google Apps Dashboard and do the following:

  1. Under the ‘Your Apps’ section, click next to Mail -> Settings
  2. Then click on ‘Change URL’
  3. The next page will have you choose a new URL to access your mail. I chose ‘mail’
  4. You’ll do the same for all the other services you decide to use.

Hope this helps! PLEASE, if you find that I’ve skipped a step, let me know!



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