Can Web Hosting Affect My SEO Rankings?

The short answer is yes. Find out why.

Your web hosting provider is responsible for routing your domain name to a specific server where your site lives. For that, they use additional servers that do the actual routing. This service is what you’re paying for when you work with a web hosting provider.

The performance of said servers will determine whether or not your website is discoverable on the web. Thus, they have a very real impact on the performance of your site, and, in turn, search engine optimization (SEO).

How It Works

Three factors pertaining to web hosting can influence SEO performance:

  1. Uptime: Nearly every site on the web experiences some downtime, but a lengthy spell of it can and will hurt your search engine rankings. Obviously, Google doesn’t want to serve up links to sites that don’t work. So, if your web hosting provider experiences downtime on a semi-regular basis, your site, in turn, will not be accessible. And that can hurt your rankings.
  2. Exceeded bandwidth limits: In that same vein, many hosting providers have a cap on the amount of traffic they will direct to your site. If you exceed traffic limits and fail to upgrade, they may take your site down – which, for all intents and purposes, temporarily de-indexes your pages and counts as downtime.
  3. Speed: Page speed is a ranking factor for most sites, which means slow service from your web-hosting provider negatively impacts your ranking. There’s also the user experience factor. If your site loads so slowly that people start leaving after visiting one page, your bounce rate will go up, and that doesn’t bode well for SEO.
  4. Location: Search engines assess location when deciding which sites to list on its results pages. Ideally, your site would be hosted relatively close to its markets or in the country of its primary market. That’s because, generally speaking, an Australia-based site is more likely to rank higher up in results for Australian searchers than it would for American-based users.

The Bottom Line

Web hosting is yet another variable in the long list of variables that affect your digital marketing campaigns.

And yes, we realize it’s a lot to stay on top of. But we’re here if you need assistance.

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