This is our 3rd article in our series of articles on Google deindexation and how to avoid it. If you have not already read the first 2 posts please stop now and check the first article here and then the second article at this address before continuing with this post.
In this post we are going to discuss technical and network/IP related issues that you should know to maintain a zero footprint blog network and avoid Google deindexing.
1. Do not host all your domains on the same IP
This is the most obvious of all. 10 years ago people would buy a simple hosting with unlimited addon domains and then host all their sites on a single IP without any problem but those days are ancient history.
2. Do not host on the same C class
This is the whole idea behind the early day SEO Hosting providers. Generally speaking a dedicated server used to get IPs that were all from the same C class. So by avoiding having IPs from the same C class people used to fool Google into thinking that their sites are not all hosted on the same dedicated server.
3. Avoid SEO Hosting providers that provide only different C class IPs.
This might come as a shock to some but Google has learned from the past few years of SEO movement and realized that many SEO experts use SEO Hostings that provide different C class IPs. But technically and from Googles perspective this is as easy to detect as using the same C class IP for all your domains.
2 IPs that are only on different C class are always owned by the same company. They always have the exact same 2 first octet and they almost always have the same Internet routing table.
Imagine if you build a private blog network that are all on different C class IPs and probably most of them are pointing to the same set of websites. After the most recent Panda update this is a signature of a SPAM blog network that Google can easily and readily detect and will end up with deindexing all your domains one after the other.
4. Avoid SEO Hosting that provide unlimited addon domains
Anything that is unlimited is good if you are the only user but it becomes a problem when other people start using it too!
For a second think about other people who would go around and order services that come with unlimited domains. Those people have 1000s of cheap and spamy domains that do not even worth to pay for hosting and as a result they spam any IP network they end up with.
So the question here is do you want to be on the same IP networks with 1000s of (unlimited) cheap and spam domains? Avoid hosting your domains on providers that allow cheap domains and you will stay under Google radar.
5. Scattered your domains across many different data centers
Natural looking blog networks is what you should always aim for. A natural looking network is when a domain gets many different back links from many different domains which are hosted on many different data centers. Think about the opposite, a website that gets all its links from a single small data center in east coast USA (where 90% of SEO Hosting providers have their dedicated servers from) isn’t that a recipe to get deindexed?
6. Scatter your domains all over the world
This item follow similar logic to item number 6. A natural looking network should come from all around the world with more focus on links that are from the same region as your potential visitors.
7. Avoid too many similar rDNS results
rDNS is not a big deal and is a big deal! Let me first explain what rDNS is and then I will discuss why I am making such a contradicting comment!
rDNS is the reverse DNS. A DNS server provides an IP address for a domain name for instance the IP address for Google.com is 18.104.22.168. rDNS in other hand provides a domain name for an IP.
For instance the rDNS value for 22.214.171.124 is syd10s01-in-f0.1e100.net !
rDNS is always controlled by the data center that owns that IP. It usually is used for SMTP servers and to make sure that emails that are coming from an IP is related to the domain in the From section of the domain.
Some data centers do not allow any change to rDNS in those cases the rDNS always discloses the name of the main provider behind the infrastructure. Some providers make sure that there is bidirectional relation between IP and domain (Glue) and some do not care at all! (in our range of IPs we have IPs that we had set their rDNS jokingly to BBC)
Google knows all these about rDNS and as a result Google does not use rDNS to establish the IP ownership (as there are better data sources for that) having said that if the majority of IPs have similar rDNS that could be a sign of a relation which Google can take into account. Hence rDNS is not a big deal as most providers can play with their rDNS and it is a big deal if majority of your rDNS point to the same provider.
8. Unless by a large provider avoid IPs that are owned by 1 company
In the previous item we discussed rDNS and that Google has other means to establish IP ownership! One such data source is IP Whois. Internet IP allocations are regulated and controlled by different organizations (for instance ARIN for USA). These organizations provide databases of who owns the allocated IPs and where those IPs are being used. In fact this is the source of information companies like Maxmind use to determine the Geolocation of an IP.
As these databases are publicly accessible, Google like the rest of the world have access to this data and can determine which IP range is allocated to which organization/data center and can easily build a graph that shows back links to each domain is coming from a single data center/provider or are coming from different providers.
Having said that, Google can easily tell the size and importance of a data center. For instance Amazon cloud data centers own a massive number of IPs and at the same time majority of Silicon Valley startups are hosted there. In other words Google knows if having many back links from a provider is because of that providers huge customer base or it is simply because that data center has been used by many SEO firms to spam Google’s Algorithm.
What you need to always do is to remember those cheap providers and try to have your IPs from as many different data centers as possible.
9. Use vanity DNS servers
A vanity DNS servers is when your DNS servers are defined as ns1.yourdomain.com and ns2.yourdomain.com. As you can see by defining vanity DNS servers you erase the name of your hosting provider as your DNS provider and hide an important part of your seo footprint from the rest of the world.
Setting up vanity DNS servers is a 2 step process. First you need to register your name servers at your domain registrars and then you need to setup proper DNS settings through your web hosting company.
Most web hosting companies do not allow this option but here at Smart SEO Hosting we provide 2 options which depending on your plan you can choice;
1. If you are on a plan that has at least 20 IPs you will get a free VPS and through that you will get access to Extreme SEO Hosting Panel (aka. ESHP). ESHP provides an option for our clients to setup vanity DNS servers through following a wizard like interface.
2. If you are on a lower level plan you can follow the instruction here.
10. Make sure your hostmaster email is the same as your domain
Another important but mostly neglected option in each DNS server is the SOA record where DNS defines the email address of the hosting company. If you follow the instructions for creating vanity DNS servers, Smart seo hosting’s approach will take care of this issue and should change your hostmaster to firstname.lastname@example.org
11. Avoid cheap providers
A cheap provider does not care or does not know how to handle a zero footprint seo hosting hence their focus on cheap domains and clients that do not want to invest in their SEO efforts.
The same way you will avoid cheap and bad neighborhoods in real life, if you care about your SEO network you should avoid cheap providers.
12. If you do not have that many domains go with A class or B class IPs
Different A class and B class IPs are by far better than different C class IPs (which are from a single DC) but the issue with A and B class IPs is their rarity. There are not that many A and B class IPs (at the time of writing of this post we have 70 B class IPs in our pool). So if you want to get quality IPs and you do not have that many domains go with A or B class IPS otherwise our C class IP packages (which is a mixed bag of A and B and C class IPs ) are the best alternative.
13. Avoid dedicated IPs
This might come again as surprise to people who are relatively new to SEO networking. In fact the idea of having something fully to your own comes the safest bet but the reality is different. In fact all blogs that are on dedicated IPs or all sites with relatively few pages that are on dedicated IPs are spam seo back link sites (There is almost no exception to this rule). Google knows this and this is one of the easiest ways for Google to deindex a site. That is why most blogs that are on dedicated IPs get deindexed in less than 12 months.
It is much easier to hide your footprint when you are among other people. Sometimes it is better to be among people to stand out and be singled out.
14. Avoid IPs that have been used for email spamming and use providers that do not let SMTP on their SEO IPs
This is a pretty well known fact. Most SEO experts check their IPs against MX black lists to see if the IP has ever been used for spaming.
Here at Smart SEO Hosting, we have disabled and blocked SMTP port on all our SEO IPs. If a client wants to send emails they can simply do that through their whm server but from Google perspective our SEO IPs are in no form related to SMTP or email and hence zero chance of being on black list.
We have still 1 more area of Google deindexation to cover and that is Google manual deindexing. Our next post in the series will discuss the actions you can take and .htaccess settings you should have to minimize the risk of Google manual ban.