The importance of website hosting for SEO has been wrongfully underestimated for quite some time. Recently, experts in this field have started emphasizing the fact that not paying enough attention to this critical factor may have extremely negative consequences on the accessibility and ranking of your website. Also, the extent to which it can enhance your traffic and conversion rates should not be neglected.
Hence, it is vital to tackle this topic in detail and explain why website hosting deserves your attention and commitment.
Why is website hosting important?
Once you decide to create a website, you have to make a wise choice of the company that will host it. This choice will primarily help you boost your rankings and reach the widest target audience possible. If you want Google to help you stand out in the severe competition of similar websites, web hosting is something you need to focus on.
Key features of SEO-friendly website hosting
When SEO-friendly website hosting is in question, here are the features to look for before you make the final choice.
High speed is something all internet users value greatly. Ideally, it should take no more than two seconds for a website to load. Understandably, this loading speed is not something everybody can achieve easily, but you should strive hard to at least come as close to it as possible by optimizing for Google’s latest speed update.
A slow website is never among the top search engine results because neither Google nor users give advantage to it over similar websites.
Setting high demands and making a serious effort to meet them guarantees success. When it comes to choosing the right website hosting provider, uptime is something you should not compromise about. While some downtime cannot be avoided, expecting anything less than 99.9% uptime is not the way to go.
The explanation is very simple. High downtime signals problems with the server your website is hosted on. When search engines visit your website during downtime, they detect the problem and move on to the next site. If this happens frequently, your website is perceived as unreliable, which will have negative effects on your rankings. Thus, this speaks volumes about the importance of website hosting for SEO.
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Impeccable website security
Proper and regular maintenance are elements of the only strategy that will make your website secure, which has a positive effect on SEO. Otherwise, you risk becoming a victim of a hacking activity that involves using your traffic for posting various types of content, most often related to pornography and gambling. In addition, search engines like Google have begun to impose security standards such as HTTPS and penalties for mixed content.
When you need to choose a host for your website, consider those that offer proactive maintenance and that inform you in a timely manner about outdated components and necessary updates. In this way, you will get genuine security for your website on various levels.
One of the key features of SEO-friendly website hosting is having automatic backups available in case your website does not work properly. Choosing a host that can provide you with these backups at all times and help you handle functioning problems efficiently is an intelligent choice.
Easy and affordable changes to the website hosting services package
The continuous growth and development of a website are what website owners always strive for. In time, you will hopefully need to modify the hosting package you use due to expected growth of your website. If your host provider guarantees the ability to change your services package when the need arises without inflicting exorbitant expenses on your budget or causing major difficulties to the functioning of your website, you have made the right choice.
Location of the hosting server matters
One of the numerous factors search engines base their rankings on besides content marketing is the location of the server your website is hosted on. The information on this point is given in your IP address. What this actually means is that search engines will give an advantage to your website over other similar websites when a user of your site is located in the same place as the servers of the company that provides you with the hosting service.
In other words, if a person in the USA is searching the internet, you will rank higher in search engine results if your server is located in the USA than websites that rank for the same keywords but whose servers are located elsewhere. Also, the proximity of a server to searchers can reduce latency and boost the perceived speed of your website.
Of course, it is possible to rank high in one country even though your servers are located in another, but this will require much more effort and considerably much more hard work. Furthermore, you might appear suspicious to some search engines if you do your business on one location but your servers are located long-distance.
How to choose a reliable website hosting services provider?
Making the final decision on this point requires a detailed analysis of several key parameters. These involve:
- The time the web host has spent in business. – The more years of experience a website host has, the greater are the chances you will get impeccable services.
- The reputation among clients. – One of the necessary steps before making the choice is checking online reviews. Customers’ experiences are indicative of how reliable, professional, and competent web hosts are.
- The Secure File Transfer Protocol. – If a web host offers the Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP), this means your files are fully protected from being modified or intercepted.
- A Secure Sockets Layer certificate (SSL). – Since this certificate encrypts the path between your server and a browser, it is critical for your website’s security and the protection of the sensitive pieces of information.
- The ability of a web host to provide you with all the factors that will improve your SEO and, eventually, boost your ranking.