Startups & Marketing

How Bad Hosting Affects SEO?

by Fahad Rafiq
June 4, 2014

With the ever-increasing and expanding online marketing industry, the customers now tend to look for the best hosting service that is fast, reliable, cost-effective, providing maximum server space, unlimited bandwidth, round-the-clock security and customer service, and above all, easy-to-use control panel.

bad hosting affect seo


Remember a bad host will affect your business badly. It will hamper your sales thus bringing your Return on Investment (RoI) down.

[Also read: In 5 Minutes, You Will Leave Your Cheap Web Host FOREVER!]

Before making a choice about which hosting service to use, you should take into consideration the important factors that can affect your SEO practice. These factors are related to Search Engine Results Pages (SERP) and user behavior.

It is not necessary that the hosting service you choose might readily help to gain top SERP position; rather than that a good hosting service provider will help you improve your site performance and speed. The performance directly affects the efforts you have done to improve your SEO practices and procedures.

In the following paragraphs, I will give a brief account of the factors that are vital to be considered before choosing a hosting service provider.

Web server downtime

Server downtime is one of most important issues that you face when you opt for a cheap hosting service provider.

Remember a cheap host is a bad host!

It affects your website performance negatively, thus driving your site’s SEO and SERPs down. Think about it. If a server is down, the search engine bot will be unable to search your website, thus degrading your overall SEO practice. It also increases your bounce rate. A higher bounce rate tends to bog your website authority down.

For this reason, I recommend you to go for the best hosting service that provides you with optimum server uptime and blazing fast speed coupled with unmatched performance.

Page load time

Page load time is another important factor to consider before choosing a web hosting service provider. In our blog post What Makes Your Website Fat and Slow?, Salman mentions that a website takes 7.25 seconds to load (median value). It is a fact that more than 50% of the visitors want a website to load in a mere 2 seconds. Failing which, they will leave the website. Matt Cutts has highlighted the effect of page load time on website performance here.

Higher the page load time, higher the bounce rate. It means that a higher page load speed will hamper your conversion rates. This is an indirect negative effect of  having bad hosting service.

Two of the factors that count when page load time comes into play include: server and development.

I recommend you to get your web content and design of the site optimized to experience the difference. Plus, you should think about moving your website to a good server. Cloudways offers free migration, but it’s only a limited time offer. Go and avail it.

Some of the best online tools which help you to measure page load time are:

Avoid shared hosting

Some people might think that shared hosting is cost-effective, because it gives them the liberty to host multiple websites on a shared server. Actually, it’s a bad idea.

It’s against the ethical practices of SEO. If you don’t believe it, then let me tell you that Google has come up with the concept of “Bad Neighborhood” for websites that are hosted on the same server with the same IP addresses. Matt Cutts has also raised his voice against this non-preferred practice of hosting websites where you have a little control of the server. Usually, cheap hosting providers have no ethics when it comes to hosting website. They simply let everyone in, even the spammer. Spamming does have a profound negative impact on the page rank authority of your website.

I am sharing a video as evidence here:

You can also check out the information related to your neighbor host, which is using the same IP address from YouGetSignal.

I recommend you to use a server that provides a dedicated IP, such as Click&Go from Cloudways.

Server location

Server location is also an important factor that affects your website’s ranking. You should use the Geo-targeting feature of the Google Webmaster Tool, which will help you target your valued customers anywhere in the world without bothering about the location of the server. Remember, you should host your website on a server that provides fast access to the online visitors.

Using native language and content of your desired country will surely give a boost to your website ranking, thus your efforts that you have put in to improve your SEO.

Here is the best answer given by Google Webmaster team for server location:

Q: Is the server location important for Geo-targeting?
A: If you can use one of the other means to set Geo-targeting (ccTLD or Webmaster Tools’ Geo-targeting tool), you don’t need worry about the server’s location. We do, however, recommend making sure that your website is hosted in a way that will give your users fast access to it (which is often done by choosing hosting near your users). (Source: Google Webmaster Help)

Cloudways & SEO: A match made in the clouds

Cloudways provides an excellent cloud platform, especially for those who really about their SEO. With 99.99% uptime, 40% faster page load times, and a diverse range of server locations, Cloudways helps you in getting good SERPs if you have taken special care about SEO and your website’s content.

You can test out the platform from the banner given below.

Start Creating Web Apps on Managed Cloud Servers Now

Easy Web App Deployment for Agencies, Developers and E-Commerce Industry.

About Fahad Rafiq

Fahad Rafiq currently works as SEO Executive for Cloudways. He keeps a keen eye on search engines and organic traffic trends. In his past time, he loves to learn new thing in web development.

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  • Sabih Ahmed

    Excellent post, Fahad. You have nailed down essential factors that a webmaster should take into consideration while selecting a host. Not only marketing activities can boost your business, but a strong infrastructure and host is also required.

    • Thank you @sabih_ahmed:disqus for reading. I fully agree that a good hosting infrastructure is essential for the progress of any online venture.

  • Omer Siddiqui

    Good structure, relevant information, tonnes of meaningful references. Good job, Mr.Rafiq!