According to research, 47% of buyers expect web pages to load in less than two seconds. Moreover, 40% of users abandon websites that require more than three seconds to load.
Poor web hosting can impact your page load times which downgrades the quality of your website and results in a high bounce rate.
The last thing website owners want is low search volumes, high bounce rates, decreased retention rates, and slow load times. Your hosting company is often the culprit behind these factors. Here we’ve created a comprehensive guide to how hosting impacts your SEO and search engine ranking:
What Web Hosting Factors Impact SEO?
Here we discuss how different web hosting factors impact SEO:
Speed and Search Engines
Responsive and quick websites are more likely to secure the first position in Google’s search engine. And for a good reason! Slow and unresponsive sites cause a poor user experience that deters users from clicking on their website.
Most search engines dig out websites with slow load times and high bounce rates. So, consider leveraging analytic tools and software to determine how well your website performs.
If your web hosting company is responsible for slow load times, consider asking them to move you to a different server. If that doesn’t solve your problem, chances are, there’s a fault in your website’s configuration or coding.
Some website hosting companies offer packages with limitations. For instance, some websites don’t provide users access to their .htaccess files, limit redirects, inability to customize and include hidden fees.
These factors may not necessarily affect your website’s SEO. However, they might be responsible depending on what you’re trying to do.
More importantly, ensure that your web host can handle everyday traffic, search volumes, and other tasks that you want to do on your website.
Search engines go beyond checking content, backlinks, and outbound links and assess the location of your website as well.
For instance, if a buyer searches for a product from the U.S., the search engine automatically displays sites based on the U.S. near the top in the search results.
An excellent way of determining where your website is based is by checking your site’s I.P. address. This way, you can learn the location of your server.
So, hosting your website with a web host with servers in the U.S. will result in higher rankings when U.S. buyers enter your chosen keywords.
However, the drawback is that your website will likely rank lower when users from other parts of the world use the exact keywords.
Downtime and Uptime
Downtime is the time when your website is inaccessible and unusable due to the web host’s server.
Search engine crawlers visit your website several times throughout the day. If they notice that your website is inaccessible one too many times, you’ll likely get flagged as unreliable. As a result, your Google search engine rankings will downgrade considerably.
Remember that even 99% uptime means your website is inaccessible for seven hours per month. So, find a web host that offers 99.9% uptime.
Every time the message ‘Internal Server Error’ or ‘Database Connection Failed’ appears on your website, it means your website cannot access the necessary files to display content.
These messages occur because of configuration errors or too many people trying to access a database. It typically happens when an article, video, or image goes viral, and millions of people try to view it simultaneously.
Top-notch hosting websites offer safeguards to prevent your server from overloading. Good hosts cache files on alternative servers and offload popular pages to reduce the number of databases.
Incorrect Top-Level Domains
Top-Level Domains refer to the component of your domain that comes after the dot. It includes .com, .org, .gov, and .net.
Although there have been several attempts to popularize other TLDs, most people expect websites to use .com. Other TLDs make your websites challenging to remember, resulting in traffic loss.
TLDs can downgrade your search engine rankings, but not a lot. But using a .com TLD boosts your SEO efforts by making your website memorable and easy to share.
Plus, if you’re targeting viewers from a specific country, use geographic suffix like .co.us or .co.uk. Makes sense. It will also increase your local SEO efforts.
Avoid Sharing Your Web Hosting
Although shared hosting sounds cost-effective, they come with a lot of drawbacks. A shared hosting website enables you to host different websites on a single server because they often compromise quality.
Google avoids websites hosted on shared servers since it goes against SEO ethics. Moreover, shared hosting servers provide access to anyone, even spammers.
It reduces the quality of your website by a considerable amount by impacting your website’s ranking and authority. Plus, shared hosting offers poor speed, scalability, and reliability.
Will Switching Hosts Affect My SEO Strategies?
Changing your hosts often can impact your search engine ranking. In most cases, jumping to another website hosting company can affect your website’s SEO success, long-term strategy, quality, and reliability.
These effects appear in metric parameters, including lead conversions, organic traffic, bounce rates, time on page, brand discoverability, and visibility.
Most website owners believe that moving to a new website hosting company will positively impact SEO and search engine visibility.
However, often changing website hosts leads to a drop in SERPs, terrible user experience, poor performance, and low website traffic.
The Bottom Line
Good SEO is vital to the success of e-commerce stores and online businesses. That doesn’t mean you should ignore the effect web hosting has on your overall search engine rankings.
Websites that require long load times, experience frequent downtimes, or share hosting services with spammers appear lower Google results.
Keep the factors discussed above in your mind to improve your SEO strategy. If you can’t pinpoint the culprit behind low search engine ranking, reach out to us.
We at Firestarter SEO enhance SEO strategies and drive growth by pinpointing the factors downgrading the quality of your website. Our highly trained and experienced industry leaders leverage the best SEO techniques to ensure tangible results.