Is IP Address A Google Ranking Aspect?

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Does the IP address of your site’s server affect your rankings in search results page? According to some sources around the internet, your IP address is a ranking signal utilized by Google.

However does your IP address have the potential to help or hurt 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 web from trustworthy marketing websites declare that Google has over 200 “known” ranking elements.

These lists often consist of statements about flagged IP addresses impacting 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 conversations with Google employees about the validity of IP addresses as ranking factors in Google’s algorithm.

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The Proof Against IP Address As A Ranking Element

In 2010, Matt Cutts, previous head of Google’s webspam team, was asked if the ranking of a client’s site would be affected by spammy websites on the same server.

His action:

“On the list of things that I fret about, that would not be near the top. So I understand, and Google comprehends that shared web hosting occurs. You can’t really manage who else is on that IP address or class c subnet.”

Eventually, Google decided if they acted on an IP address or Class C subnet, the spammers would simply transfer to another IP address. For that reason, it wouldn’t be the most efficient way to deal with the concern.

Cutts did keep in mind a specific exception, where an IP address had 26,000 spam sites and one non-spammy site that welcomed more examination however repeated 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 has the right to do something about it when totally free hosts have been enormously spammed.

In 2016, during a Google Web Designer Headquarters Hours, John Mueller, Search Advocate at Google, was asked if having all of a group’s sites on the same c block of IP addresses was a problem.

He addressed:

“No, that’s perfectly fine. So that’s not something where you synthetically need to buy IP address blocks to simply shuffle things around.

And specifically if you are on a CDN, then possibly you’ll end up on an IP address block that’s utilized by other business. Or if you’re on shared hosting, then these things happen. That’s not something you require to synthetically move around.”

In March 2018, Mueller was asked if an IP change with a various geo-location would affect SEO. He reacted:

“If you transfer to a server in a various place? Generally not. We get enough geotargeting info otherwise, e.g., from the TLD & geotargeting settings in Browse Console.”

A couple of months later, Mueller responded to a tweet asking if Google still counted bad areas as a ranking signal and if a devoted IP was necessary.

“Shared IP addresses are great for search! Great deals of hosting/ CDN environments use them.”

In October 2018, Mueller was asked if the IP address location mattered for a website’s rankings. His reaction was merely, “Nope.”

A couple of tweets later on, within the very same Buy Twitter Verification thread, another user commented that IP addresses mattered concerning backlinks. Mueller once again reacted with a basic “Nope.”

In June 2019, Mueller got a question about Google Search Console showing a website’s IP address instead of a domain. His response:

“Usually, getting your IP addresses indexed is a bad idea. IP addresses are typically short-term.”

He suggested that the user guarantee the IP address redirects to their domain.

A few months later, when asked if links from IP addresses were bad, Mueller tweeted:

“Hyperlinks from IP addresses are absolutely fine. Most of the time, it suggests the server wasn’t established well (we canonicalized to the IP address instead of the hostname, easy to repair with redirects & rel=canonical), however that’s simply a technical detail. It doesn’t suggest they’re bad.”

In early 2020, when inquired about getting links from different IP addresses, Mueller said that the bad part was the user was making the backlinks themselves– not the IP addresses.

Then, in June, Mueller was asked what happens if a website on an IP address bought links. Would there be an IP-level action taken?

“Shared hosting & CDNs on a single IP is truly common. Having some bad websites on an IP doesn’t make whatever on that IP bad.”

In September, during a discussion about bad areas impacting search rankings, Mueller specified:

“I’m not aware of any ranking algorithm that would take IPs like that into account. Look at Blog writer. There are excellent websites that succeed (disregarding on-page restrictions, etc), and there are terrible sites hosted there. It’s all the exact same infrastructure, the very same IP addresses.”

In November, Gary Illyes, Chief of Sunlight and Joy at Google, shared an enjoyable truth.

“Fun truth: altering a site’s underlaying facilities like servers, IPs, you name it, can alter how fast and frequently Googlebot crawls from stated website. That’s because it really detects that something changed, which triggers it to relearn how fast and frequently it can crawl.”

While it’s interesting info, it seems to impact crawling and not ranking. Crawling is, naturally, needed to rank, but crawling is not a ranking element.

In 2021, a Buy Twitter Verification user asked if IP canonicalization might favorably affect SEO. Meuller replied:

“Unless folks are connecting to your website’s IP address (which would be unforeseen), this would not have any impact on SEO.”

Later on in December, when asked if an IP address instead of a hostname looks uncommon when Google assesses a link’s quality, Meuller stated, “Ip addresses are fine. The internet has tons of them.”

If you’re worried about your IP address or hosting company, the consensus appears to be: Do not worry.

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Our Verdict: IP Address Is Not A Ranking Aspect Any Longer

Possibly in the past, Google try out IP-level actions against spammy websites. But it should have discovered this inefficient because we are not seeing any confirmation from Google representatives that IP addresses, shared hosting, and bad areas belong of the algorithm.

For that reason, we can conclude in the meantime that IP addresses are not a ranking factor.

Included Image: Paulo Bobita/Best SMM Panel

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