Friday 28 June 2013

Why Web Hosting Is Important To Your SEO

Web Hosting
You may not believe it, but SEO is more than just backlinks and keywords. There are many other ranking factors that search engines look at, some are very well known, but things like hosting are less talked about.

Your host can have a dramatic effect on your search engine rankings. This is usually due to loading speeds, but there's more to it than that. Here are just a few reasons why you need the best host if you want to gain more traffic.

Indirect Effects

As stated above, your rankings will usually suffer due to poor loading speeds. The indirect effect is that you might have a harder time getting links and visitors. Think about this for a moment. You visit two websites that are strikingly similar. The only major difference is that one of them loads slowly. Will you give a link to this website, even though it's a little inconvenient to use? Some people might feel reluctant about linking to your website or recommending it to others if it loads very slowly. Very bad loading speeds might also cause people to think that your website isn't working, which deceases your number of potential customers and readers.

Direct Effect

Google's search engine spiders are constantly crawling websites to see what has changed about them and indexing new pages. Google uses over 200 ranking factors for ranking a website. While the main ones are backlinks, relevancy and keyword usage, loading speed is another factor that will determine your rankings. If the spiders tell Google that your website is very slow, then your ranking might be lower than expected. This makes sense when you consider what Google is looking for. Google doesn't just want to connect people to relevant websites, they want to connect people to websites that have the best user experience. People hate going to slow, spammy websites, so Google does its best to ignore these pages. Site speed might just be one tiny factor, but this one factor can definitely hurt you. Consider switching to a faster host to improve your rankings.

Guilty by Association

This problem usually only affects the riskiest and cheapest Web hosts, but it can potentially happen regardless of how safe your host seems. People are always creating scam sites to make some quick money, but these sites are usually de-indexed after a while and they won't be seen in the major search engines. So, how does that affect you? Under certain circumstances you might seem guilty by association if your site is on the same IP address. For example, let's say that all of the websites on your server are spammy. Google will obviously block the IP address linked to that server. That means that each and every website will suffer the same cruel fate whether it's deserved or not. This is a rare problem, but it does exists. You see this often in the SEO hosting industry. SEO hosting is a type of hosting where you can get lots of IP addresses and put them all in the same cPanel all with the sole purpose of gaming the search engines. Google obviously doesn't like this type of hosting.

Server Location

An international server is great if you are doing international SEO, but it's not so great if your website is targeting domestic customers, and vice versa. Not only does server location impact loading speeds, but it also counts as another factor that Google considers when ranking websites. A server in your own country, or the country that you are targeting, will increase your rankings. If the server is somewhere else, then your rankings will suffer.


Most hosts guarantee at least 99% uptime, which is good. However, some hosts cannot keep this promise and the uptime falls to 95% or less. This means that your website will be down and inaccessible for the time being. If the search engine spiders cannot access your website, then this can significantly impact your rankings because, once again, Google cares about the user experience. Nothing is worse for the user experience than a website that won't load whatsoever. You need to make sure you're getting an uptime between 99.9% to 99.99%. Keep in mind that a 99.9% uptime means that your site could be down for up to 40 minutes per month.


Web hosting can directly and indirectly affect your ranking if you choose the wrong host. Not only will people be unwilling to link to you if your host is bad, but Google will decrease your rankings because your website is slow and inaccessible. Be sure to choose a good host so that you don't have to worry about these problems.

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Until my next post on Monday on keeping your pages afloat by using Google's disavow tool, have a wonderful and relaxing weekend!

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