Will moving hosts affect SEO? I don't want to lose number 1 spot

Discussion in 'Social Media, SEO/SEM & Online Marketing' started by simonnixon65, Sep 20, 2012.

  1. simonnixon65

    simonnixon65

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    Hi guys and girls,
    Wonder if anyone could help me with an answer to a question concerning hosting and SEO ?!
    I am currently a member of an Internet Marketing membership site that as part of my membership offers free hosting of as many websites as I require, which is great, however I want to end my membership as I hardly ever use the site anymore and most of the info on there, although fresh content is regularly added, can be found for free elsewhere online with a bit of searching.
    My question is; my offline business website is hosted there and has been at the number one spot in the Google organic ranking for probably around 2 years :D and as most of my work comes from my website I'm a bit worried about moving it, so if I were to move my site to another host ( I'm thinking of using Hostgator ) would I lose my top spot on Google ?
    Thanks, Simon. :)
  2. Lace

    Lace Retired Moderator

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    Hi Simon,

    Moving from one host to another won't affect SEO but you have to make sure you do it the right way. Perhaps your provider can give you a hand during the transition process? Here's an old but still relevant blog post from Matt Cutts (Google guy) about this topic: http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/moving-to-a-new-web-host/
  3. Andy777

    Andy777

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    As Lace said, moving from one hosting account to another shouldn't affect your rankings.
  4. dsben

    dsben

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    If your based in the UK try and use a UK host
  5. simonnixon65

    simonnixon65

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    Thanks to you all for the advice,
    All my domains are with Go Daddy but I was thinking of using Hostgator for my hosting as I have used them in the past and found their pricing very reasonable and straight forward, I did take a look at the link you posted Trace, it looks pretty informative but also a bit complicated for a "techie dunce" like myself, guess I will have to find a guide thats in "baby steps" and plain english on how to move a website from one host to another, the main thing is my question has been answered by you guys and I dont need to worry about loseing my number 1 spot ! :D
    Many thanks to you all once again, Simon. ;)
  6. Gary

    Gary

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    It's simple enough, here's a quick, but not difinitive, guide (I say not difinitive as it is possible (but rare) to run into difficulty where only your current and / or new host can help, but here's the basics (without added bloat):

    1. Get your hosting
    2. backup your database(s) (if applicable) and download
    3. back up your files & download
    4. upload files via ftp to your new host
    5. import your database(s) (if applicable) via phpmyadmin on your new hosts control panel (ensuring to create the databases with the same account name and password for easiest transition, otherwise you will ned to edit your websites configuration file to change the username / password as applicable)
    6. Change the DNS server location with your registrar
    7. wait for those changes to take affect and for search engines to be crawling your site at the new location
    8. you can safely close the old site and continue to enjoy your position!
    If needing to use mysql database(s) you may need to edit your configuration file settings to the new database name, although often this isn't necessary as the vast majority are 'localhost' I cannot speak for either godaddy or hostgator though as I have never hosted with either (but if you cannot find the database name the relevant hosts should be able to advise you).

    All the best!
    simonnixon65 likes this.
  7. simonnixon65

    simonnixon65

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    Hi Gary,
    Thanks for this walk through I will copy it into note pad to refer to if thats ok ?!, I have just been looking at Hostgators website and they still do some cracking deals, I think in view of what I will be doing in the near future, I will be going for their business plan, I notice also that they offer free transfer of your website so another consideration that might help me.
    Ive also just had a thought, what about my email that goes with my website, how do I deal with that when I change hosts ?!
    Thanks, Simon. :\
  8. Gary

    Gary

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    Of course that's ok :)

    If Hostgator offer the transfer process for free you might as well take them up on it, just remember to not close your old account uintil the new one has been acivated / indexed (basically hostgator should make a copy then your old host will be live right up to the point that the DNS settings have updated, at which time visitors will then be taken to the new hosting, ergo, no drop in visitors / access).

    Regarding the emails, this isn't quite so simple but it needn't be overcomplicated, how do you currently access your domain emails? If using webmail then why not transfer / export your old emails over to outlook, thunderbird or similar, do this just before cancelling your old host so you have them updated, then set up your email addresses on your new host (same address and password), then edit your settings in outlook (or whatever) to the new mailserver address, this will then export your new messages from your new address, there is apparently a way to transfer them back but tbh I don't know it as I use windows mail to handle mine as it's easier to access.
  9. simonnixon65

    simonnixon65

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    Gary, my email is currently redirected to my windows mail account (pop3 catch all account) along with several other web mail address' for other sites and a blog, I do this as its so much easier just to check my windows mail where everything is downloaded to one place !
    Will I have to go into c panel at set up my mail accounts again ?
    Thanks, Simon.
  10. Gary

    Gary

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    yes if hostgator don't do it as part of their service (which I doubt), then once it's all transferred you will need to edit your settings in windows mail to point to your new mailserver.
  11. simonnixon65

    simonnixon65

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    Ok, thanks Gary, and all who commented :)
    Simon.
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