Are you using cheap web hosting for your blog?
There’s no shortage of web hosting companies available and as a blogger you should understand not all of these are created equal. However, if you are serious about blogging you should also be serious about the hosting service used for your blog.
Just ask Rosalind Gardner, one of the best affiliate marketers around, about the implications and damage caused by having sites offline. She tweeted on September 9 about her server and 6 sites being offline for 6 days and they are still offline today (September 12).
Many novice bloggers make the mistake and look for cheap web hosting. They see the promises of 100% uptime, unlimited bandwidth and an impressive list of available services.
If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.
As a blogger you should be concerned about the hosting service you select. Not only can this influence your search engine rankings but it can also influence your reputation.
Having your blog hosted on a slow server will impact your user experience. The longer your readers have to wait and the more time it takes the servers to render the pages, the less likely people are going to stick around.
Most internet users have a short attention span and will not wait around while a page loads. They’ll simply move on to the next site.
The faster your site loads, the better the user experience.
As for reputation, don’t confuse this with one of the misconceptions created around “server reputation”. Some feel having multiple blogs on the same IP is frowned upon by the search engines, especially Google.
This isn’t true.
A web hosting company offering shared hosting could potentially have hundreds of customers on a single server. Your website will not be impacted or banned because it shares the same IP address of other blogs who may be doing something contrary to Google’s webmaster guidelines.
What do I mean when I say your hosting can impact your reputation?
Just think of how it will look to your readers if they come day after day to read new content only to find your site is offline. Just think of how it will look to the search engines if they come to index your content and find it is offline.
Eventually they will stop coming or they will form an impression about the quality of your site. You are likely to lose readers and likely to lose ranking in the search engines.
Why would your rankings be impacted?
Well, it plays to user experience again. There is a freshness factor that has been shown to give blogs a boost in rankings. The more fresh and new the blog appears because of new content, the better. Users tend to come looking for new content.
Having your site offline could also impact inbound links. Webmasters will periodically validate who they link to. If they detect broken links because your site is down, they may opt to remove their links to your site. Losing too many links will have a definite impact on your ranking.
How scary is that?
When considering your web hosting company for your blog, choose wisely. Ask other bloggers in your social circles what services they use, how happy they are with the company and if they have concerns.
If you’re thinking of getting around having to purchase web hosting, and blogging on one of the free subdomain services, you should check out this post by Rae Hoffman.
As for Rosalind Gardner’s woes with her web hosting? I’m sure there will be some great reading over at her site Net Profits Today when she’s back online.
I can’t wait to read her post mortem!