SEO nightmares;
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Shared IP Address is risky, myth or reality?

Read: Banned Shared IP Address by Association


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Matt Cutt's dream

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Distributing free widgets with a link to the creator is SPAM!?

Read: Widgetbait gone wild


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A Google penalty that was caused by a user

Read: Hidden text penalty


Some humor to take away your daily SEO stress



Banned Shared IP Address by Association: Myth or Reality?

By Redstarweb – May 24 2008



Now and then you will find a blog article which discusses the risk of hosting your website using a shared IP address. The possible risk (according to many) is that if your site shares one IP address with ten’s or hundred’s other websites and one of these other websites breaks the SE guideline rules, then the search engines may remove or ban that website domain. But they may also ban every other website using the same IP address.

You can read an old (but still actual in the SEO buzz) article about this here.


I can tell you this is not true!

I am not saying that I know everything, and I am not saying there can be some risk using a shared IP address, but not for this specific reason. In fact the opposite (using many dedicated, different C-class, IP addresses) could also do some harm. For example, if you have many sites, and spread them over different dedicated IP addresses and different C-classes, then Google (because they know everything) could see this as a serious practice for SEO. In other words if you are using SEO with the only purpose to rank better then others, I can assure you that Google doesn’t like that.


But there can be reasons that using shared IP addresses can have some negative effects. For example if your webhost messes up with their virtual hosting. Or when using a questionable cheap webhost.


But if you have a white hat website, build according to the SE guidelines and if you are using a reliable webhost with a good reputation (listen to others, read reviews), then using a shared IP address will do you no harm.


Slashdot has published an interview in 2003 (qst.#5) with Graig Silverstein (Google Director of Technology) where Graig stated the following:



Why in this day and age does Google continue to penalize sites that are virtual hosted? With ip addresses becoming harder to get/justify every day why does Google discount the relevance of links that don't come from a unique ip address. Please don't just deny it, I think the Internet community deserves an explanation.


Answer by Craig:

I can't just deny it? What are my other choices? [:)] Actually, Google handles virtually hosted domains and their links just the same as domains on unique IP addresses. If your ISP does virtual hosting correctly, you'll never see a difference between the two cases. We do see a small percentage of ISPs every month that misconfigure their virtual hosting, which might account for this persistent misperception--thanks for giving me the chance to dispel a myth!


And in 2006 Matt Cutts (Head of Google's Spam team) confirmed this statement again:


I’m happy to affirm that this statement which was true in 2003 is still true now.


Suppose that a single website (using black hat, illegal or spammy techniques) on a shared IP address could negatively effect all other (nonrelated, white hat) websites using the same shared IP address, wouldn’t that be a powerful ‘weapon’ to get rid of your competitors?


And yes, there are some advantages when using dedicated IP addresses, but not for the only reason to avoid getting banned from shared IP addresses or virtual hosting.

If you are interested in discussions like this and want to learn more to give you site more exposure, I suggest to visit Aaron Wall’s SEO Community and Training Center.