Influence of IP address in SEO

Posted by 29 April, 2009

When we discuss about IP address and SEO, the first thing that strikes us is bad neighbourhood, dedicated Vs shared IP etc. I have decided to revisit all aspects of IP address in regards to SEO.

In Web Hosting: Once you have decided to finalize a hosting company for the website the first thing that you need to do is to request for the IP address/range that will be allocated for the website. Why do you need it? What you do with it?

Not every hosting company will give you the details of the IP before you complete the registration and the payment procedures. You require an IP address for the website to ensure that it is not blacklisted. I have already covered IP address blacklist in 10 Essential Pre SEO checklists for Site Analysis post which requires you to check the IP using the blacklist checker tool.

Shared IP Vs Dedicated IP: The next thing that you would do is to decide whether to go with a Shared IP or a Dedicated IP. If you have decided with a dedicated IP then repeat the above process again. In case of a shared IP ensure that you check your neighbours without fail. How you do it?

There are various online tools for reverse IP, the one that I would prefer is MyIPNeighbors. Another simple tool for the process is to use ip: Live Search advanced operators. Just give ip:xx.xx.xx.xx in Live Search and you will get the list of website associated with your IP. This should give you detailed information about your neighbours based on which you can decide.

This is a controversial topic in SEO since different webmasters have different thoughts. There isn’t any conclusive evidence that a website hosted in shared IP will perform better `than in dedicated IP or vice versa. The only disadvantage that I see in a dedicated IP is its operating cost and nothing else.

Static Vs Dynamic IP: Search Engine spiders can effectively crawl websites with static IPs with HTML 1 as it will be able to resolve the address immediately. However for websites with dynamic IPs it will try parsing the websites with HTML 2, 3 and 4 until it resolves the address for the specific sites. This can take up to 3 months to happen. In the meantime it will use the IP of the main site on this IP, often times the hosts site. It will come back until its able to find your specific IP. During this period of 1-3 months, any links that you build to your site that is found by Google, will get credited NOT to your site, but to the main root site on the shared IP, often times your host site. To avoid any such complications always go with Static IP for your websites. For more details on this topic please refer Why using Static IP is beneficial – by Google Engineer.

In Canonical Issue: In some cases a website with www version will point to a different IP to that of a non www version. Here search engines treat the either of the version as a backlink to the other. So redirecting the non-www version alone doesn’t resolve the issue. Ensure that individual pages are redirected to their destination properly.

C block IPs: This would lead to a confusion on what a c-block IP in hosting and in SEO perspective. In networking Class C IP will ranges from 192.0.1.1 to 223.255.254.254 any IP within this range is termed as Class C IP.

In SEO, a C Class IP is the number in the third block AAA.BBB.CCC.DDD here “CCC” is the C-block IP. Google tend to assume that websites linked with in same IP are related. Let us consider two websites A and B

  • IP address of A – 122.167.188.12
  • IP address of B – 122.167.188.13

From the above IPs Google is likely to consider that the websites are related. Now with this webmasters have started requesting backlinks from different C block IP. I would say Class C is not the only thing that Google use to relate websites.

Please share your thoughts on the topic by commenting to the article

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Comments
April 30, 2009

Great insight! You have provided me some food for my thought. Thanks for sharing! :)

Posted by Vaidhyanathan
April 30, 2009

Reverse DNS checkers are very good for share hosting cases when lot of domains are hosted on the same IP and they don’t check class C subnets.

Our research tool uses different approach –
http://www.majesticseo.com/research/neighbourhood-checker.php
– it will RANK domains hosted on same IP/subnet by number of referring domains pointing to them. This allows to easily spot bad domains as usually they’d get spammed pretty heavily so will stand out of the crowd.

After using this tool we moved one of our domains to new hosting – better be safe than sorry :)

Posted by alexc
April 30, 2009

IP play major role in internet technology.So hosting provider should be select by the check tool.
Thanks for this tip.

Posted by Technogati
April 30, 2009

I have never heard of a dynamic IP on a web server. I’m fairly certain all my shared ips are static but interesting to hear. Thanks for the info. =)

Posted by Gerald Weber
April 30, 2009

Thanks for clearing the basic concepts and the importance of IP in the SEO term.

Posted by NeuroSEO
May 1, 2009

This information is contrary to what Google says. Please read this post from Matt Cutts: http://www.dullest.com/blog/myth-busting-virtual-hosts-vs-dedicated-ip-addresses/

Posted by Michael H
May 3, 2009

My limited investigations and testing have yet to show any significant relationship between shared IP addresses vs. dedicated IPs and SEO. If SEO is really all about thinking like users (and making a good user experience), this seems like unnecessary effort. Still, it certainly can’t hurt. Thanks for the education.

Posted by Jason Lancaster
May 7, 2009

Dynamic IP address is not an option for “normal” webservers. All search engines cache the DNS information at least for a few hours to reduce the overhead.

To reduce the latency involved in resolving multiple domain name calls, some high traffic sites resort to addressing the IP addresses instead of domain names. This is another reason why it is always preferable to go with dedicated unique IP addresses.

The cost involved in getting a unique IP address is really not an issue ( it costs about $ 2 per month per IP address).

Strictly speaking in terms of SEO, there is no perceptible impact whether you have a Unique IP or a shared IP. It is always the peripheral issues which affect the overall impact.

Posted by Prowler
May 7, 2009

@Prowler – Great points boss and thanks for the addition. Happy to see your comments :)

Posted by Raghavan
June 15, 2009

Hi..Thanks for Sharing this. It was really useful and I was able to have a deep look onto my clients IP issues. Thanks again..

Posted by George K Abraham
July 27, 2009

Thanks for the advice on C block IPs. I don’t suppose you have any clever ideas on allocating different IP addresses from different subnets to the same hardware node ?

Posted by Website Builder
September 4, 2009

Thank you for shining the light on several issues; your site, and the intelligent folks that commented, is very helpful.
.-= Mark Stegman´s last blog ..Blogging on inside pages =-.

Posted by Mark Stegman
September 23, 2009

Instead of saying “Static vs Dynamic IP”, I think you meant “Static vs Shared IP”, as everyone else has pointed out, dynamic is not an option used for any normal website, only static and shared ips.

Posted by intel352
November 8, 2009

Could I please throw a spanner in the works what happens if you use a free hosting site like yola? is this bad for SEO? cheers Simon

Posted by Simon
December 4, 2009

It was really useful and I was able to have a deep look onto my clients IP issues… Thanks again..

Posted by online auctions
December 4, 2009

Great useful tips about IP..good sharing

Posted by Bollywood

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