How a Hosting Provider Can Affect Your SEO Efforts


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How a Hosting Provider Can Affect Your SEO Efforts

By now, anyone with a living and breathing website should be familiar with search engine optimization (SEO) techniques. Things like keyword research, link building, and site structure optimization are all basic tools in every webmaster’s toolbox. What’s less well-known, however, is that the choice of a web host can play a major role in search engine ranking as well.

The specifics of the algorithms that search engines use to determine page ranking are always kept close to the vest. They’re also constantly being adjusted in an attempt to provide users with the most relevant search results. There are some factors that are public knowledge, though, and that’s where a website’s host can play a pretty outsized role. When choosing a host, here are the things to consider to make sure that they won’t harm your SEO efforts.

Uptime Vs. Downtime

If a web host has poor reliability, it will harm the productivity of the website. Every moment that a potential customer can’t reach a site is a moment they’re using to find the competition. This direct effect should be extremely obvious. What you may not realize, however, is that search engines are also trying to reach websites at all hours of the day and night.

The spiders that are used to crawl your site are keeping track of when they were unable to reach it. If your website appears offline too often, it will be tagged as unreliable by the search algorithm. After all, there’s no point in providing users with a link to a site that’s not likely to be reachable. It’s for this reason that choosing a host that has an excellent track record of reliability and uptime.

Website Security

Just like hosts that aren’t reliable, hosts with ineffective security can affect your SEO efforts as well. Search engines don’t want to route their users to websites that are infected with malware or are associated with spam. Properly designing your website can help to prevent it from being victimized, but that’s only half of this constant battle.

Your web host should be providing the right infrastructure to guarantee the security and usability of your site. It’s also a good idea to avoid shared hosting if you own a high risk and valuable business so you’re not in mercy of another customer’s flawed code. A decent web host should also be providing you tools and ongoing guidance to help you defend your website against emerging threats.

Page Loading Times

There are several ways to optimize web content for speedy delivery into a browser. Image compression, code minification, and finely tuned caching can do wonders for delivering complex pages at reasonable speeds. No amount of optimization can make up for bottlenecks stemming from a web host’s hardware, though. If search engines see that it’s time-consuming to load a site, the pagerank will suffer. Google, for one, has been using this as a ranking factor since 2010. It’s because they consider slow sites to be too inconvenient to present to their users.

After you’ve performed the basic page optimizations that are under your control, it’s important to keep testing load times on a regular basis. By building up data points over time, you’ll be able to determine if your site is facing performance issues due to your host. To check page speed, you can use:

1. Google PageSpeed Insights

2. Pingdom Tools

3. WebPageTest.org

Physical Location

The internet is everywhere. It seems counterintuitive to think that the physical location of your web host could impact your search ranking, but it will. In a way. When it comes to SEO, it’s recommendable that you keep your servers close. Search engines like to prioritize sites based upon region in order to localize results. In other words, the closer to your physical business your host is, the higher you’ll appear when people in your area try to find you.
Geographical location of your server matters only in a straightforward sense. It has effect only on the number of hoops that it takes for some piece of data to move around. The fewer hoops it uses, the faster your information will move around.

While it’s impossible to find a host right nearby for most website owners, it’s probably important to get as close as possible. Many hosts offer several data center locations you can choose from, and you’ll need to pick the closest one available. This choice will also play a role in the responsiveness of your website to potential customers, which we’ve already discussed above.

Choose Wisely and Benefit

Now that you know the factors involved in choosing an SEO-friendly web host, it’s time to get out there and do some research. Talk to other webmasters to find out how their experiences have been. Make use of analytical data to make sure you’re getting what you’ve paid for. Most of all, talk to any potential web host to see how they’ve addressed SEO concerns. If they’re worth using, they’ll already know what you’re talking about and have answers at the ready.

 

Paul Swanson an experienced web designer with a passion for UX/UI and an editor at Versuswebhosting. He chooses very carefully when it comes to recommending a hosting service or using one for his own sites. Paul prefers web companies that provide reliable and safe web hosting services, without pointless features and eye-catching options.

What is the Difference Between Windows and Linux for Web Hosting?

For most inexperienced digital entrepreneurs, web hosting tends to cause a lot of problems.

It’s something that’s known to create confusion in their heads.  

Why? – Well, because, they don’t really know where to start here. There are just too many different options to choose from.

It’s overwhelming.

And the worst thing of it all? – No one really has the time or luxury to spare on experimenting with various different hosting packages and providers.

Everyone is looking to get their website up and running ASAP.

Picture this scenario:

A small time entrepreneur, let’s call him Bryan, has decided to take his online game to a whole new level and start doing everything in his power to blow his direct and indirect competitors out of the way.

Bryan is determined to see his plan become reality, so, naturally, he cannot afford to waste any time on trivial things. B-man cannot allow his website to be stuck in development for weeks and months. No! He needs to get his project quickly off the ground and start generating those leads and customers before someone figures out what he’s doing and steals his bread and butter right in front of his nose.

Even though Bryan’s plan sounds pretty straightforward, he’ll soon figure out that getting his professional website up and running isn’t quite a walk in the park.

Like I said above, there are just too many questions Bryan needs to answer before he can actually enter his development phase.

First and foremost, the question about his hosting situation.

And this concerns everyone, not just Bryan. Yes, you too.

Why? – Well, because, without a proper hosting solution, your website cannot function. Simple as that. It doesn’t really matter how good your idea, design or marketing may be, if you don’t host your site on a professional and secure server – your business is toast!

Terrible hosting can destroy your entire site and your reputation as well. It can be quite fatal for your work. If you don’t take it seriously and figure out what you need here  – metaphorically speaking, you’ll have to kiss a lot of frogs until you find your prince in shiny armor.

It doesn’t really matter if you’re like Bryan interested in creating a small business site, a big ecommerce platform, a blog, or something completely different – you’re no.1 goal here is always the same: You need to make sure that your site is always accessible to anyone that could be interested in what you have to say or sell online.

Apart from that, you want to make sure that your and your customer’s data is always well-protected.

Web Hosting Is Not Something That Can Be Randomly Bought

Having these things in mind, we can agree upon that figuring out what type of web hosting and provider perfectly suits your needs is not really something that you can do with a simple Google search.

In order to choose the best option out there for you and your brand, you must first see why do people look for professional hosting solutions. Next to that, it’s important that you understand the differences between free and paid hosting providers and all the pros and cons that come with choosing a particular type of hosting.

Once you do that, you start comparing prices, and grasping the performance and limitations of each and every hosting package and provider out there.

Which hosting brand offers the best quality/price ratio for our needs? Which hosting companies are most popular? What are the people saying? How good does a certain web host treat it’s customers? Is their network stable? What does the brand do to ensure the safety of user data? – These are just some of the questions you need to answer for yourself before you start to even consider doing business with a certain provider.

Even though most people easily come to terms with all the basic hosting packages, they still struggle to understand the difference between hosting your site on a Windows or Linux server.

That’s why I’m writing this post. I’m gonna make it clear to everyone who doesn’t really get this what separates these two options:

Windows Vs. Linux

As you already know, Linux and Windows are two different type of operating systems. Both of them work fine for most basic customers. It’s your choice to pick whether you want to opt your hosting package for Linux or Windows technology. Both formats will smooth on any type of machine, and they’re capable of powering all your requirements.

You can rest assure knowing that you cannot make a catastrophic mistake regardless whichever of them you choose.

Both of them come with FTP access and a range of web page publishing options so, if your computer runs on Windows for instance, it doesn’t mean you have to opt for Microsoft web hosting. Linux will also work fine on that machine, regardless on which OS it runs.

Each technology, however, has its own distinct advantages for users.

So, What’s the Difference Between Windows and Linux Hosting?

Well, the difference is that both of these systems run of different scripts and databases. That’s why it’s important that you think in advance if you’ll be in need of any special Windows script languages.

Linux is a more popular option.

Why? – Well, because it has more of the features web designers expect. So unless you have websites which need specific Windows applications, Linux is the preferred choice.

Linux is better for high-quality open source software. This sort of thing usually becomes available for Linux first.

Every operation you perform on a Linux server can be trivially automated by copying the commands you ran into a text file. With its characteristic reliability, stability and efficiency Linux proved itself in complex web and mailserver environments. If you use PHP, Perl, or MySQL – then Linux is definitely for you! This particular system is great for blogs, online stores, forums, etc.

On the other hand, Windows makes it easy for user  to execute conception frameworks, .NET framework or SharePoint. If you’re interested in adding Windows applications or ActiveServerPages, .NET script languages, VisualBasic or Microsoft SQL databases to your site – the you know with what kind of server you should go.

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