Seo-Report - Hosting can Boost in-Country Google Rankings by up to 30%

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Mar 25, 2007
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- Managed Hosting can Boost in-Country Google Rankings by up to 30%, Helping Ensure ROI for International Search Marketing

- Local hosting boosts search results for international sites

- .com domains without local hosting lose out on up to 30% of potential

- Local hosting, Virtual local hosting and CDN most effective for
boosting search engine visibility

- Full report available here
( Host_Close_Report_Summary_-_12.11.08.pdf)

Managed Hosting specialists, NTT Europe Online ( today revealed the findings of the 'Host Close' report ( which details how managed hosting services can help boost a brand's natural exposure on Google by 30%, clarifying for the first time the importance of web hosting locations on Google rankings.

The report, carried out for NTT Europe Online by independent online marketing company, Effective Digital revealed that whilst having a local domain name is the most important factor for successful Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), websites which don't have hosting in the country which they are targeting are significantly disadvantaged in Google rankings. Other success factors for international search marketing include the language used for the domain name, data file names, and the language used on the page itself as well as the server location and language of sites which link to it. Websites failing to account for these factors could fail to appear on Google whatsoever.

"We are always being asked by international clients and digital agency partners about how server location and managed hosting can help boost all-important Google rankings and there has been plenty of anecdotal evidence, but no clear answers. This research has finally confirmed that the physical location of your server is one of the key factors for Google exposure for international sites. It has always been hard to respond to these questions and we knew we had to clarify the answers once and for all, for our own site as much as anyone else's," said Rob Steggles, Marketing Director Europe for NTT Europe Online (

The location of where a site is hosted is set to become a priority for digital marketers and SEO experts alike. Gifford Morley-Fletcher of Effective Digital said of the report: "SEO is often referred to as a dark science and this research pulls in another element to add into the mix, especially for .com's which don't have local domain names. We targeted search phrases relevant to several western European companies using different versions of Google (, .fr,. de, .es and .com) for different searches. The results show that, in some cases exposure on Google can be boosted by 30% and that some major international websites could risk gaining no exposure whatsoever - certainly quite an alarming prospect."

"The report proves the importance of hosting location on search rankings for the first time and highlights the three main ways in which a website's managed hosting can help local rankings. First of all, you can host all regional websites locally. Secondly, you could use virtual local hosting, which uses virtualization servers in each territory you are serving and thirdly, you can use a content delivery network to cache and serve your data in the region you are targeting," added Morley-Fletcher.

About the report

Available to download here (

NTT Europe Online commissioned Effective Digital to investigate the influence of the physical location of a web server on an international web site's ranking in the search engines - in order to determine whether or not hosting a site in the country it is targeting has a positive influence on where it is placed in relevant search results. Combining on-line research with a tailor-made experiment, Effective Digital's investigations produced the following conclusions:

International SEO, like local SEO, involves the optimisation of several elements of a web site, both off and on-site. The difference comes in the order of importance of the elements to be optimised, as the key challenge is to ensure that the search engines can identify a site's location in order to index it for the most relevant audience. Sites identified as 'local' will rank higher than those with an unclear target location. The top 5 elements in order of priority are:

1. Domain name and use of Country Code Top Level Domain, if at all possible - for example, in Italy, a site with a .it domain will register higher than a site with a .com/it domain.

2. The I.P. Address of the site's web server - Search Engines rank local sites higher within that geographic area, having local hosting is especially important if a website doesn't have a Country Code Top Level Domain.

3. The language used in the domain name and file names of pages - as with point 4, Search Engines use language to detect and rate a website's locality and therefore relevance, boosting its ranking.

4. The language used in the text of the site itself and defined in the relevant META tags - as with point 3, language is a key element in gauging the relevance of a site.

5. The language used by and location of sites linking to the web site - the strength of third-party links is influential in boosting the authority of a site. The same goes for measuring a site's relevance to local markets.


He forgot the importance of country KEY-Domains!

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