Do Web Hosts Affect SEO?

If this is your first time getting your own website, chances are that you have a lot of questions in mind. Things like SEO, SEM, Page Rank, CMS, traffic, etc. The truth is, you shouldn’t be questioning yourself about all of this unless you’ve already got a web hosting service and a domain name. Domain name could affect your SEO, big time so you have to make sure that you can pick the perfect domain name for your website. However, that knowledge is a no brainer. Of course you’d like a domain name that can be easy to remember and relevant to your business.

What is often overlooked is the web hosting service. People would create a plan to choose the best domain name, then create a three-month long plan to build the site from the ground up and another three-month plan to fill it with content, gather visitors, improve SEO, etc.

There is really nothing wrong with that, in fact, coming up with plans is a great way to ensure that your website can be of great success. What’s important, which is the very first step and is often neglected, is choosing the correct web host and web hosting plan. Not choosing the correct web hosting plan can lead to site downtime, slow loading or perhaps security issues, all of which could be of great impact to your website. Some sites can get away with shared hosting, however for larger sites or media heavy sites a cheap windows VPS or a dedicated server may be a better option.

SEO, Your Website and The Hosting

Search engine optimization encompasses a lot of different fields. There are technical fields such as your website’s code, how JavaScript, CSS and HTML are presented and written and your server. Then, there’s the written field or just what I would like to call it. Things like your website’s content – are they informative and valuable to the reader? Are your contents optimized? Does your articles, site name, meta description and article titles targets a specific keyword? Do you make sure that you don’t spam target keywords?

Now we get back to the earlier part. As you’ve learned, the technical aspect of SEO also includes your webhost. What does this mean to you? If your webhost can’t provide compression algorithms like gzip, your website will slow down. If your web host can’t provide that, your website will load slowly and Google will penalize your site – which greatly affects page rank. Another thing to consider is Google’s Page Speed Insight’s “Reduce Server Response Time” suggestion. If you test your website using this tool, if your web hosting server is slow, then you Google will suggest you improve it.

Therefore, in a nutshell, yes, web hosts affect SEO. You should choose a fast and reliable web host to improve your SEO.

WordPress for Beginners

Have you already chosen a domain name? Have you found a web hosting company for your website? Have you had an insight as to what type of audience and niche you’re going to target? Have you? Then the only thing left for you is the platform to put all of your ideas to work. You can always create a plain HTML page to publish your content, but that’s very old fashioned and it’s very tedious. There’s a newer way to publish your content online and that is by using WordPress – one of the most popular content management system (CMS) today.

You might probably have heard about WordPress before. After all, it powers nearly 30% of the web and there’s also a free-hosted version which is a competition of BlogSpot. You probably even used the free-hosted WordPress version for your personal blogging projects. But what we’ll be talking about here is the self-hosted WordPress version; the one that you’ll install on your own web server. Now, without further ado, let us walk you through the basics of WordPress!

Note: we assume that you already have a working WordPress installation. The purpose of this guide is to give you a brief overview of different parts of WordPress.

The Main Dashboard

WordPress’s main dashboard consists of a left sidebar which will allow you to navigate around different parts of the WordPress admin dashboard. Then, the main screen contains a brief summary of your website such as the number of posts, comments and pages as well as the latest WordPress news, a form for creating quick drafts and other additional widgets if you added certain plugins.

The toolbar on top allows you to view the website, visit the WordPress website, create new page, post and more.

Settings

On the settings page, which can be accessed by clicking the settings option in the left-hand menu, allows you to customize some features of the WordPress core. Under settings –> general, you can edit your site’s name and tagline as well as other additional related information. Under settings –> discussion, you can control comments. Still under settings, you can also find different tools to import your existing content from different blogging platform.

Edit Post/Page

Here, you can easily publish a new blog post or a new page for your website. The forms are pretty straightforward and if you’ve used a different blogging platform before, everything is self-explanatory.

Plugins

This page allows you to add plugins to extend the functionality of WordPress. There are plugins to help you improve SEO, manage comment spam, optimize website speed and more. If you know PHP, you can event create your own plugins to add new features to WordPress

Themes

There’s no fun if there’s no themes and of course, WordPress has thousands of free themes available to everyone. Themes range from simple variations of the default WP theme to complex themes offering additional features that would otherwise require a plugin.

Web Hosting Explained

Do you want to have your own website? Have you thought about writing a blog about your favorite TV series? Do you want your business to gain more customers using online means? Or do you just want to try creating and managing your own website for fun? Then you need a domain name and a web host. Getting a domain name is fairly easy, though you’ll need to take in some considerations before choosing your domain name, which is not a technical difficulty at all. That’s why we are going to focus on web hosting as this will entail some technical skills and knowledge. Don’t worry though, you’ll never need a master’s degree in Computer Science to be able to start your own website. As long as you know how to read, write and use a computer, you can build your own website. Now, without further ado, let me explain what web hosting is!

Choosing Hosting Provider

The first thing that you need to do after you’ve purchased your domain name is to find a hosting provider. Most of the time, domain names can be bought from web hosts so you might as well choose a provider where you would buy your domain name and purchase a hosting service. When choosing for a hosting provider, consider their customer reviews as well as the service they offer.

Integrating Your Domain Name to your Hosting Account

Now that you have chosen a domain name and purchased a hosting account, it’s time to integrate the domain name to your hosting account. You’re going to want to login to your domain name provider’s control panel or any other similar platform for managing your domain name. From there, you must see an option for changing the name server of the domain name. The name server that you need to put into the boxes should be the name server of your web server. You can obtain your name server from your hosting provider.

Once you added the name server correctly, you just wait for it to “propagate” usually within a few hours before you can see the changes you made on your site.

Installing Software or Adding Contents

If you are a beginner, the easiest way to start is to use a CMS and I recommend WordPress. Most web hosting providers can provide you with an access to an automated WordPress installer via cPanel. Using WordPress is easy and if you have experience using blogger or even the free WordPress platform before, it’s going to be a breeze.

Now that you have your own website, domain and hosting, it’s time to publish your content and share your content via social networks and friends to increase your traffic and readership. Who knows? You might gather hundreds of followers and create a profitable website!