Does the IP address of your website’s server affect your rankings in search results? According to some sources around the internet, your IP address is a ranking signal used by Google.
However does your IP address have the potential to assist or harm your rankings in search? Continue reading to learn whether IP addresses are a Google ranking aspect.
The Claim: IP Address As A Ranking Element
Articles on the internet from reliable marketing websites claim that Google has over 200 “understood” ranking aspects.
These lists often consist of declarations about flagged IP addresses impacting rankings or higher-value links because they are from different C-class IP addresses.
Screenshot from HubSpot.com, June 2022 Luckily, these lists triggered numerous discussions with Google workers about the validity of IP addresses as ranking factors in Google’s algorithm.
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The Evidence Versus IP Address As A Ranking Element
In 2010, Matt Cutts, former head of Google’s webspam team, was asked if the ranking of a customer’s site would be affected by spammy websites on the exact same server.
“On the list of things that I stress over, that would not be near the top. So I understand, and Google understands that shared web hosting happens. You can’t really manage who else is on that IP address or class c subnet.”
Eventually, Google chose if they took action on an IP address or Class C subnet, the spammers would just transfer to another IP address. For that reason, it wouldn’t be the most effective method to take on the concern.
Cutts did note a particular exception, where an IP address had 26,000 spam sites and one non-spammy site that welcomed more examination however reiterated that this was an exceptional outlier.
In 2011, a tweet from Kaspar Szymanski, another former member of Google’s webspam group, noted that Google deserves to act when totally free hosts have been enormously spammed.
In 2016, during a Google Web Designer Headquarters Hours, John Mueller, Browse Advocate at Google, was asked if having all of a group’s websites on the same c block of IP addresses was an issue.
“No, that’s perfectly fine. So that’s not something where you synthetically require to purchase IP address obstructs to just shuffle things around.
And specifically if you are on a CDN, then possibly you’ll wind up on an IP address block that’s used by other companies. Or if you’re on shared hosting, then these things happen. That’s not something you require to artificially move.”
In March 2018, Mueller was asked if an IP change with a various geo-location would impact SEO. He responded:
“If you relocate 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, Mueller responded to a tweet asking if Google still counted bad neighborhoods as a ranking signal and if a dedicated IP was essential.
“Shared IP addresses are great for search! Lots of hosting/ CDN environments utilize them.”
In October 2018, Mueller was asked if the IP address area mattered for a site’s rankings. His response was simply, “Nope.”
A couple of tweets later, within the exact same Buy Twitter Verified thread, another user commented that IP addresses mattered concerning backlinks. Mueller again responded with a basic “Nope.”
In June 2019, Mueller got a question about Google Search Console revealing a website’s IP address instead of a domain. His answer:
“Generally, getting your IP addresses indexed is a bad idea. IP addresses are typically short-term.”
He recommended that the user ensure the IP address reroutes to their domain.
A few months later on, when asked if links from IP addresses were bad, Mueller tweeted:
“Links from IP addresses are absolutely great. Most of the time, it implies the server wasn’t established well (we canonicalized to the IP address instead of the hostname, simple to fix with redirects & rel=canonical), however that’s simply a technical information. It does not mean they’re bad.”
In early 2020, when inquired 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 bought 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 everything on that IP bad.”
In September, throughout a discussion about bad neighborhoods impacting search rankings, Mueller mentioned:
“I’m not familiar with any ranking algorithm that would take IPs like that into account. Look at Blog writer. There are terrific websites that succeed (neglecting on-page limitations, and so on), and there are awful sites hosted there. It’s all the exact same infrastructure, the same IP addresses.”
In November, Gary Illyes, Chief of Sunshine and Happiness at Google, shared a fun fact.
“Fun reality: changing a website’s underlaying infrastructure like servers, IPs, you call it, can alter how fast and often Googlebot crawls from stated website. That’s because it actually discovers that something altered, which prompts it to relearn how quick and often it can crawl.”
While it’s interesting details, it seems to effect crawling and not ranking. Crawling is, naturally, required to rank, but crawling is not a ranking element.
In 2021, a Buy Twitter Verified user asked if IP canonicalization could favorably affect SEO. Meuller replied:
“Unless folks are linking to your website’s IP address (which would be unforeseen), this would not have any impact on SEO.”
Later in December, when asked if an IP address rather of a hostname looks unusual when Google assesses a link’s quality, Meuller mentioned, “Ip addresses are great. The web has lots of them.”
If you’re stressed over your IP address or hosting business, the agreement seems to be: Do not fret.
Get More Google Ranking Element Insights.
Our Verdict: IP Address Is Not A Ranking Factor Any Longer
Perhaps in the past, Google try out IP-level actions versus spammy sites. However it needs to have found this inadequate because we are not seeing any verification from Google agents that IP addresses, shared hosting, and bad areas are a part of the algorithm.
Therefore, we can conclude for now that IP addresses are not a ranking factor.
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