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If my web host has a lot of spammy clients, will that influence my site’s ranking?

If my web host has a lot of spammy clients, will that influence my site’s ranking? - answered by Matt Cutts

Matt's answer:

Today’s question comes from Bogdan Suvar. Bogdan asks, can the hosting company’s reputation (having lots of spammy sites) influence my site’s ranking in search results? I’m going to give the answer, typically not. And so let me tell you how that works. So typically, a hosting company has a lot of different stuff on it. Some of it will be good. Some of it will be bad. There will be some spam. But just because you happen to be on an IP address or using a hosting company that also hosts some spam, that doesn’t mean that you should be affected. So that’s why the answer is, typically not. Now, why not just a hard no? Well, there have been a very few situations– I remember, several years ago, there was a really bad hosting company. I’m not even sure whether you would call them hosting company, since it was something like 27,000 sites of porn spam and two legit sites on one IP address. They were– and so if you were one of those two legit sites, in order to catch the 27,000 porn sites, that was something where we were like, well, OK. That’s really pretty excessive. So in most situations, we haven’t looked at the IP address in a long, long time in those sort of terms, like gathering sites by IP address in that particular way. And in most situations, you shouldn’t need to worry about it at all. The only reason why I add that slight disclaimer is because sometimes you do see a site, or even a free host, for example, that claims to be a legit free host, but in fact, it’s actually a front for a spammer. And almost every single or every single one of the actual free host accounts is actually spam itself. So if you happen to get lured in and maybe the spammer does offer free hosting services, but pretty much 99.9% of all of that free host is spam, then we might take action on the entire free host. And even if it’s a little bit lower than 99.9%. But if it’s overwhelmingly the vast majority of it is spam. So typically, just because a hosting company might have some low quality stuff, that should not affect your reputation. Don’t take my disclaimers as something to worry about. Those are really rare corner cases. So it’s not the sort of thing that you would normally typically encounter.

by Matt Cutts - Google's Head of Search Quality Team


Original video: