Does the IP address of your website’s server impact your rankings in search engine result? According to some sources around the web, your IP address is a ranking signal used by Google.
But does your IP address have the prospective to help or damage your rankings in search? Continue reading to discover whether IP addresses are a Google ranking factor.
The Claim: IP Address As A Ranking Element
Articles on the internet from reliable marketing sites declare that Google has over 200 “known” ranking elements.
These lists frequently consist of statements about flagged IP addresses affecting rankings or higher-value links due to the fact that they are from different C-class IP addresses.
Screenshot from HubSpot.com, June 2022 Luckily, these lists triggered many discussions with Google staff members about the validity of IP addresses as ranking factors in Google’s algorithm.
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The Evidence Against IP Address As A Ranking Factor
In 2010, Matt Cutts, previous head of Google’s webspam group, was asked if the ranking of a client’s website would be affected by spammy websites on the exact same server.
“On the list of things that I fret about, that would not be near the top. So I comprehend, and Google understands that shared web hosting occurs. You can’t actually control who else is on that IP address or class c subnet.”
Ultimately, Google chose if they acted on an IP address or Class C subnet, the spammers would just transfer to another IP address. For that reason, it would not be the most effective way to tackle the issue.
Cutts did keep in mind a particular exception, where an IP address had 26,000 spam sites and one non-spammy website that invited more scrutiny however restated that this was an extraordinary outlier.
In 2011, a tweet from Kaspar Szymanski, another previous member of Google’s webspam group, kept in mind that Google can do something about it when complimentary hosts have actually been massively spammed.
In 2016, during a Google Webmaster Headquarters Hours, John Mueller, Search Advocate at Google, was asked if having all of a group’s websites on the same c block of IP addresses was an issue.
He responded to:
“No, that’s perfectly fine. So that’s not something where you artificially require to purchase IP address obstructs to just shuffle things around.
And specifically if you are on a CDN, then possibly you’ll end up on an IP address block that’s used by other companies. Or if you’re on shared hosting, then these things take place. That’s not something you need to synthetically walk around.”
In March 2018, Mueller was asked if an IP change with a various geo-location would affect SEO. He responded:
“If you transfer to a server in a various place? Normally not. We get enough geotargeting information otherwise, e.g., from the TLD & geotargeting settings in Search Console.”
A couple of months later on, Mueller responded to a tweet asking if Google still counted bad communities as a ranking signal and if a devoted IP was necessary.
“Shared IP addresses are fine for search! Great deals of hosting/ CDN environments use them.”
In October 2018, Mueller was asked if the IP address area mattered for a website’s rankings. His action was simply, “Nope.”
A couple of tweets later, within the same Buy Twitter Verification thread, another user commented that IP addresses mattered regarding backlinks. Mueller once again reacted with an easy “Nope.”
In June 2019, Mueller got a concern about Google Browse Console revealing a site’s IP address rather of a domain. His response:
“Generally, getting your IP addresses indexed is a bad idea. IP addresses are frequently short-term.”
He suggested that the user guarantee the IP address reroutes to their domain.
A couple of months later on, when asked if links from IP addresses were bad, Mueller tweeted:
“Links from IP addresses are definitely great. The majority of the time, it suggests the server wasn’t established well (we canonicalized to the IP address rather than the hostname, easy to fix with redirects & rel=canonical), however that’s just a technical detail. It doesn’t suggest they’re bad.”
In early 2020, when asked about getting links from various IP addresses, Mueller stated that the bad part was the user was making the backlinks themselves– not the IP addresses.
Then, in June, Mueller was asked what occurs if a site on an IP address purchased links. Would there be an IP-level action taken?
“Shared hosting & CDNs on a single IP is actually typical. Having some bad sites on an IP doesn’t make whatever on that IP bad.”
In September, throughout a conversation about bad communities impacting search rankings, Mueller stated:
“I’m not familiar with any ranking algorithm that would take IPs like that into account. Look at Blog writer. There are great websites that succeed (neglecting on-page limitations, etc), and there are awful sites hosted there. It’s all the very same facilities, the same IP addresses.”
In November, Gary Illyes, Chief of Sunlight and Happiness at Google, shared a fun reality.
“Fun reality: altering a website’s underlaying facilities like servers, IPs, you call it, can alter how fast and frequently Googlebot crawls from stated website. That’s because it really finds that something altered, which triggers it to relearn how fast and often it can crawl.”
While it’s interesting information, it appears to effect crawling and not ranking. Crawling is, of course, needed to rank, however crawling is not a ranking factor.
In 2021, a Buy Twitter Verification user asked if IP canonicalization might favorably impact SEO. Meuller replied:
“Unless folks are connecting to your website’s IP address (which would be unforeseen), this wouldn’t have any effect on SEO.”
Later on in December, when asked if an IP address rather of a hostname looks unusual when Google evaluates a link’s quality, Meuller stated, “Ip addresses are great. The internet has tons of them.”
If you’re stressed over your IP address or hosting business, the consensus seems to be: Don’t fret.
Get More Google Ranking Element Insights.
Our Verdict: IP Address Is Not A Ranking Factor Anymore
Maybe in the past, Google explore IP-level actions versus spammy websites. However it needs to have found this inadequate since we are not seeing any verification from Google representatives that IP addresses, shared hosting, and bad neighborhoods belong of the algorithm.
Therefore, we can conclude for now that IP addresses are not a ranking element.
Included Image: Paulo Bobita/Best SMM Panel
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