This article gives you illustrated instructions on setting up a link in 23andMe to your Ancestry family tree.
If you tested with both 23andMe and Ancestry, there’s no way to link the DNA results. But we’ll show you how to transfer your DNA results to GEDmatch and compare them there.
And if you tested on both sites, check out the section on how to to identify DNA matches who did the same.
Step 1: Get Your Ancestry Family Tree Link
To link your Ancestry tree, you must add the tree’s web address to your 23andMe account profile.
So, let’s look at how to get the web address or URL.
Log into your Ancestry account and open the family tree you want to link. The web address is at the top of the browser. But you should edit it a little.
Copy-and-paste the text in the browser to a document – notepad or Word, it doesn’t matter. What you see may look a little different from what is displayed in the browser. For example, you may not see the starting text “https://” in your browser – but it’s there, don’t worry.
Here is an example from one of my trees.
I’ve highlighted in purple the part that you’ll want to use for 23andMe. You can get rid of part from the last slash (/). So the part I would keep is this:
Test Your Ancestry Tree Link
Once you’ve edited the text, you should test that you haven’t made a mistake. Make sure you are logged into the Ancestry.com website.
Open a new tab in your browser. Paste the text into the address area at the top of the browser and click enter.
Your browser should take you straight to your family tree.
The browser may show you an error page saying “the page you tried to access is no longer available.” In that case, you’ve made a mistake when editing the tree URL. You’ve probably truncated a digit.
Step 2: Link Your Ancestry Family Tree To 23andMe
To link your Ancestry tree to 23andMe:
(1) Expand the menu under your account name and click on “Settings”
(2) Click on “Edit Enhanced Profile” in the Enhanced Profile section
(3) Expand the section titled “Share a link to your online family tree”
(4) Enter the URL of your Ancestry tree
Enter the link that you captured in the previous section.
Step 3 (optional): Set Your Ancestry Tree To Public
If you make your Ancestry tree public, then Ancestry members can view it without needing to get your permission. Of course, they won’t be able to make any changes to your tree.
Here are instructions on how to make your Ancestry tree public.
What If You Want To Keep Your Tree Private?
If you choose to keep your tree private, then people trying to use your tree link will get an error message. Be warned – the message isn’t very informative. It doesn’t tell them that your tree is private, it simply says the page cannot be found.
Your 23andMe DNA relatives may think you (or they) have made an error. This may dissuade them from trying to contact you. However, you may receive a message asking to see the tree.
Here are instructions on how to share your Ancestry tree with other people if you prefer to keep it generally private.
Do 23andMe Members Need An Ancestry Account To See Your Tree?
23andMe members need at least a free guest account on Ancestry to see your tree there.
If they use your link without membership, Ancestry will encourage them to sign up for free. They will be able to view your tree with this free account.
How To Compare 23andMe And Ancestry DNA Results
Our article on whether Ancestry and 23andMe share data shows that although the companies give anonymized data to some common research projects, they don’t share customer DNA databases.
If you want to compare Ancestry DNA results with 23andMe DNA results, then you must do so on a separate platform.
The GEDmatch website accepts free uploads of DNA results from other companies.
You can transfer DNA results from both Ancestry and 23andMe to GEDmatch. When both DNA kits are on GEDmatch, you can use the free one-to-one comparison tool to compare DNA.
- Here is a step-by-step guide to downloading DNA results from Ancestry.
- And this is a guide to downloading DNA results from 23andMe.
- And here are instructions to upload DNA results to GEDmatch.
One of the GEDmatch tools allows you to run a report that compares two specific kits. We have a detailed tutorial on how to use the GEDmatch One-To-One comparison tool.
Find Relatives Who Tested On Both Sites
If you tested with both companies, then it’s really useful to identify which of your DNA mathces did the same.
Check out our article on four ways to find your 23andMe relatives on Ancestry, and vice versa.