Setting up a subdomain in a different account

We are in the process of getting a client to setup a child (subdomain) in a different account to the primary root domain. The client has created 2 name server records for the child/subdomain, but every time we try to add the child/subdomain we get the following error “Please ensure you are providing the root domain and not any subdomains (e.g.,, not”

Any guidance / tips / assistance would be appreciated.

If you look at Subdomain setup · Cloudflare DNS docs, you’ll see that Subdomain Signup is only available for Enterprise Plans.


The customer has an enterprise plan and they are the ones trying to setup the delegation.

If you want to add a subdomain, you need an Enterprise account.

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The client has an Enterprise Account - they want to setup the subdomain in another account so a different set of staff can manage it - are you saying they now have to purchase an enterprise account for the subdomain as well ? The feature of the ENT account is that it lets you create sub-accounts. Or am I confusing this altogether ? Sorry we have done delegated account before using the CNAME verification - but never a sub-account so just trying to figure it all out

I’m not sure here as I’ve never done this before, but I believe the Enterprise customer would set up the child zone in their own account and then invite you to manage that one zone.

But it is probably best if they contact their customer support manager who will have an authoritative answer on that.

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Yeah - trying to do that as well - just exploring all angles just in case anyone else here has done it before :-(. TY.

See also Partial (CNAME) setup · Cloudflare DNS docs

Is this an XY problem? e.g. what exactly do you want to do?

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We have a client that uses Cloudflare themselves but want us to manage one of their subdomains. They only have a Business account BUT say that they have delegated subdomains to other 3rd parties in the past. All documentation says they the owner of the domain needs n enterprise account. Anyway they have followed the delegation guide, created 2 NS records for the subdomain but when we try to add the subdomain on our portal as a site we get an error.

You can add a subdomain to your account if your account has an Enterprise plan. You cannot add a subdomain of another account’s Enterprise zone to your non-Enterprise account. The best thing would be for them to create the subdomain zone in their account and give you access to it. (But as far as I know it must be Enterprise, not Business.)

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So Cloudflare accounts allow you to setup multiple sites/domain - each with their own account type (free/pro/business/enterprise) - it’s not the account per say as the domain itself. Now this customer has setup subdomains and delegated them to other 3rd parties - even though THEY ONLY have a business account. All very confusing - as support keeps advising me that the owner of the parent domain must have and ENT account. One way of the other will get to the bottom of this. Trying to setup a call with a CF ENT sale person to get more info on the ENT side of things and the subdomain support

You can delegate a subdomain to a 3rd party nameserver on any kind of plan. You can’t add a subdomain to your Cloudflare account unless you’re on Enterprise. So make sure you’re both talking about the same thing.

I have multiple Cloudflare accounts so I just tried it both ways. I can, on my Enterprise account, delegate and add a subdomain. But, in a non-Enterprise account, I cannot add a subdomain even from the Enterprise account’s domain. I can, however, delegate a subdomain from a free account and add it to my Enterprise account. The account adding the subdomain has to be on Enterprise. (Then they could add you to that account so you could manage it.)


Thank You very much - that clarifies a lot. Can I bother you while I am waiting for someone from CF to contact me. When you setup an ENT account can you bundle a few domains into the one ENT accounts or do you have to pay for a ENT account per domain. Again Thank you for testing and clarifying for me. Owe you a beer.

Enterprise accounts are fully custom, so all things are possible.

In addition, many Cloudflare products work on the idea of “the highest plan that exists in your account”. So having an Enterprise zone in the account will give you access to some Enterprise-only products account-wide, even in other domains, automatically.


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