Domain Manage

UK vs US hosting

Discussion in 'Hosting' started by Rob_F, Nov 5, 2009.

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  1. Rob_F United Kingdom

    Rob_F Well-Known Member

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    Is it still worth paying more for UK hosting? I heard recently that the location of the server no longer matters from a SEO perspective, is this true?

    Thanks,
    Rob
     
  2. Domain Forum

    Acorn Domains Elite Member

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  3. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    I believe as long as the domain for the site is a .co.uk, you can host anywhere in the world and it will still be considered a UK-related site from the search engines' point of view. I've always proceeded on that basis, anyway.
     
  4. foz

    foz Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    I would stick to the host location matching the ccTLD, if a Global audience co-locate to each market segment.

    Regardless of SEO, fast websites create an appealing user experience.
     
  5. TinkyWinky United Kingdom

    TinkyWinky Active Member Acorn Supporter

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    Depends entirely on who you use - we host with Rackspace in the US and on some of our sites the load time is equal to sites we host with UK companies like UKFast and Fasthosts. This is for .co.uk domains.

    There's lots of factors - not least the network/router setups and pipeline the hoster users and also how the DNS is set up either with the hoster or with your Domain registrar if you are using their DNS forwarding - in my experience this can have a dramatic effect - like a 0.5 second delay effect....

    Just because you are in the UK, doesn't mean shortest path is used to your host - least resistance might be the best way of thinking about it from physics back at school - often traceroutes from Scotland to servers in London goes out over atlantic and back... it's milliseconds extra for the distance and you won't notice it.

    Ultimately website load can also be dependent on the browser - IE7 is sh&te at loading complex pages with javascript quickly whereas in my experience the Javascript processing by FireFox is much much quicker for the same page.

    Lots of factors - but the main one for us was choosing a hoster with 99.99% uptime and SLA's and a big company that wasn't going to disappear overnight.

    You get what you pay for most times.

    TW
     
  6. spondishy

    spondishy Active Member

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    If you search in google using the show uk sites only option my US based .co.uk's appear so that would say to me google doesn't care.

    Do the same in bing and they disappear.
     
  7. TinkyWinky United Kingdom

    TinkyWinky Active Member Acorn Supporter

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    Really? All my .co.uk's appear in all combinations.... for G and Bing
     
  8. spondishy

    spondishy Active Member

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    Bing

    Maybe it's just a glitch with my site. Definitely the case though. UK only search and site disappears for the main keyword.
     
  9. retired_member13

    retired_member13 Banned

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    Mine appear in Google, Yahoo and Bing, whether set to UK or generally.

    They are co.uk sites hosted with Hostgator in the US.

    Interestingly though, as a test when I launched the co.uk sites I set up a UK service on an exact match keyword .org (not .org.uk) also hosted in the US.

    I targeted the .org as a UK service in Webmaster tools (In late July 2009), but other than the extension there is no difference in site structure, SEO style, anything at all really.

    The result?? >> This site has failed to rank anywhere, on any engines for any terms, which I continue to find interesting. I'm thinking of moving the domain to my UK host just to see what happens.

    My next experiment is with a me.uk.
     
  10. foz

    foz Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    Agree with the networking and routing comments.

    If you wished to take consideration on the business side, the host location for your website(s) can form domicile location(s) for tax purposes.
     
  11. golddiggerguy United Kingdom

    golddiggerguy Well-Known Member

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    You are logged out of Google when searching ?

    Google places your sites on page one as it knows you go to them/ own them etc and places them on pages higher than normal.

    Log out and you might see them disappear :( a mistake a lot of people I know do LOL


    GDG :cool:


     
  12. deconstruction

    deconstruction Well-Known Member

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    I thought this too, but i added a .co.uk to a US site and google via seo and adwords thought of it as a US site.

    I added site to google webmaster and said this is a UK site, next day it was fine.
     
  13. FagEnd

    FagEnd Banned

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    I thought there would be an SEO benefit with UK servers, but all my sites are hosted in Texas with hostgator now, and I see no probs with rankings for UK domains. I'm seeing that the extension matters, and server location does not.
     
  14. expertc

    expertc Well-Known Member

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    I only use US based hosting for all my sites, no problem with SEO, GEO Locations, etc. Prices are in US$ and if paying by GBP it's impossible to resist :D
     
  15. MrMason United Kingdom

    MrMason Active Member

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    This is a bit like comparing a Ferrari with a Ford Fiesta, :D

    We have the same situation recently though with a customer who moved from ThePlanet to Krystal. So US to UK. After the move, pretty much everyone including Asian, North American, South America and of course Europe noted that the speed of the website was noticeably faster.

    UKFast, as previously discussed in other posts are not fast, and FASTHOSTS servers are so overcrowded pages seem to take an age to load.

    We have many customers who move to our hosting after hosting in the US, and are amazed at the speed increase. This then increases revenue with their customers as they aren't waiting 5+ seconds to load pages. There is also a large difference in download speeds if you are serving files/video. Getting any decent speed across the Atlantic is somewhat difficult and you'll tend to find file downloads less than the 300kb/second mark on average (from our experience).

    As a rule of thumb, we advise anyone who asks us where to host their website in accordance to who is visiting it. If your audience is in Europe, then host in the UK or the Netherlands. If it's mostly America, then host in the US.

    1) It's really not worth the price difference to slow your customers down. Speed === Sales, there are many studies that suggest this. When you can host your site with a decent webhost in the UK for £25/year, why penny pinch?

    2) Get support in your own timezome. This can be pretty important, unless your host is running 24/7 support - and even then are you speaking to a first level support tech, or can you speak to someone who can actually help you ?

    3) No one really knows about the effects of SEO - but again for the negligible price difference, is it worth the risk?

    If you only take price into consideration when purchasing the tools to do your business with then yes I guess it's impossible to resist :)
     
  16. expertc

    expertc Well-Known Member

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    Nope, not only price… One of my hosting companies is a US-based company (Site5), I have a reseller package with them for more than 8 years now. They use to be a small host but now use The Planet servers. And you know what, talking about support, I get a response from them within 2-5 minutes ANYTIME day or night. Extra IP address – no problem, because I am an “old” customer, I might even get it for free and setup within hours on my request. SSL, root access, you name it. Haven’t seen any silly limits like “get 20 mail addresses for all your business needs…”. Duh, I put as many addresses as I want, subdomain goes live instantly, etc. They migrated me to a new server while keeping old one running and synched, so the downtime was … zero. I have had bad experience with the UK-based hosts, sorry. Almost every extra request was followed by NO, we can’t do it or it’s going to cost you. To get beyond 1st level support, where you realise that the person does not understand what you are talking about, was a daunting task. Maybe now it’s different, but, you know, better safe than sorry.

    BTW, I am in no sense associated with the Site5 and have other US hosting plans as well, this was just an example.
     
  17. MrMason United Kingdom

    MrMason Active Member

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    They sound like an excellent company, I wish there was more of them (and us) and less of all the people who say NO to simple requests, or have so many added extras that you end up spending more money on extras than your original plan :)

    There also needs to be more people like yourself who will write good reviews for good companies, as people only generally heard bad things about bad companies!
     
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  18. expertc

    expertc Well-Known Member

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    Thanks! I do appreciate your approach to the “review”, written about your (direct or indirect) competitor. Haven’t seen much of it, refreshing… I do host lots of sites both for clients and myself so should keep an eye on all new hosting solutions.
     
  19. nickynoodles

    nickynoodles Active Member

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    If you're doing anything online (UK) that generates, say, >£25 income a month, I can see no reason not to get a UK VPS, or at the very good UK shared hosting with a dedicated IP.

    Who wants to share an IP / resources with 6000 other crappy sites, some of them no doubt spammers, and almost certainly 'adult' domains.

    Google is now factoring in response time to both organic rankings and PPC placement.

    I would argue that if you're on shared hosting you're not really serious about what you're doing.

    /me ducks :)
     
  20. Skinner

    Skinner Well-Known Member

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    I find the US is generally cheaper for masses of bandwidth and diskspace on the face of it, but they oversell like you would not believe, leaving you with very limited memory. Servage for example (when I used them), give your PHP Scripts about 8mb memory, before killing it. So anything with meat in it will bite the dust instantly, meaning if your site is dynamic, don't waste your time.

    One of the main reasons I use the UK for any large sites, mostly because I can send a 32gb Memory Stick (USB) to my hosting company and say "Hey can you walk the 100 yards to the cage, stick this in the USB and copy the content to XYZ folder for me please", and its done. 10gb files uploaded even off a 2mb up stream would take days constantly going.

    I was recently talked into cloud hosting by James at Rackspace Cloud Sites Pricing from Rackspace Cloud Hosting, this is certainly a viable option for anyone who wants the best of all worlds, will deliver decent speed the world over.

    Edit: I haven't used the Cloud Hosting yet, as its low on my list.
     
  21. expertc

    expertc Well-Known Member

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    People, I do understand your point about the UK hosting. I would gladly go for it as well but… when I last time did something for a customer (respected B2B) we needed quick campaign with email traceability, so the simple request was, something like 120-130 extra disposable addresses to get it through. What we went through, it’s a separate story: first the host asked for like £20 a months for that disposable set with a year contract (???), then we were told that it will take 5 working days, etc.,etc.

    I simply pointed MX record to one of my shared hosting plans and voila, everything is done.

    Now, tell me, why any company would try to squeeze out extra pennies for something that should simply be free. Whenever I’ve asked for anything from UK based hosts (whatever small!) – extra payment and 5 working days. I don’t know, maybe it is different now, but I don’t want to risk it.
     
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