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UK Sites in google
Have they changed the rules?!
shady




msg:130960
 2:24 am on Nov 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hi folks

Please accept my apologies if I am behind the times! I spend too much time developing and unfortunately, not enough time reading WebmasterWorld!

It has always been my understanding that sites will be returned in the "UK sites only" option in google.co.uk if

1) They are hosted in the UK
OR
2) If they have the .co.uk extension.

I have just noticed one of my .co.uk sites appear in no.1 position for a particular search in google.com/co.uk but it is filtered out in "UK Sites Only".

Has google changed its policy on what it considers a UK site?

<edit> This site is hosted in US </edit>

 

caine




msg:130961
 2:28 am on Nov 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

probably not, may just be an oversight! just can't see any reason they would delibrately filter out a UK site on a UK IP from a UK filtered search, unless there is bigger plans of amalgamtion between indexes to come, which i would doubt.

shady




msg:130962
 2:39 am on Nov 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

Sorry, you may have read this prior to my edit!

The site is a .co.uk BUT it is hosted in the US! Is this now a problem?

bignet




msg:130963
 6:06 pm on Nov 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

yes it seems to be the cause of the problem

most wms here agree that if you care about a uk ranking you should get a uk hosting AND a .uk domain

Maybe the US is worse than Germany in the eyes of G
I know .uk sites hosted in germany which do well on G UK serps

olias




msg:130964
 6:19 pm on Nov 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

The site is a .co.uk BUT it is hosted in the US! Is this now a problem?

It is not yet a problem for me, I still have a .co.uk hosted in the US doing very well for uk specific searches.

engine




msg:130965
 6:42 pm on Nov 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

Please read this thread carefully about UK sites in google [webmasterworld.com]

shady




msg:130966
 1:52 am on Nov 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Very informative, thank you!

MHes




msg:130967
 10:17 am on Nov 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hi

We have a .co.uk hosted in the UK.

I just did a series of searches for common and competitive phrases to the US and UK.

We rank better in 'UK only sites'.

Most results are surprisingly similar for UK only compared to Worldwide, but we never do worse for 'UK only searches'

The site is 2 years old, pr7 and gets around 7000 uniques per day from google.

HOWEVER, with the inktomi rankings and googles strange behaviour I am worried and would never host in the US again, just to be safe :)

HarryM




msg:130968
 12:00 pm on Nov 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

The thread mentioned earlier is from July, and a few months is a long time in Google. Conclusions may no longer be valid. Hopefully the following may add something.

I am also concerned about this issue because I have a .com site hosted in the UK. However the pages that show in a Google UK-only allinurl: search are always fewer (currently 12%) than those in the same Google all-Web search. I wondered if Google were phasing out that part of the UK database which would bring them in line with Inktomi. I emailed Google UK about this issue and got the following reply:

For our UK-specific searches, we try to include pages that are hosted in the UK. If your pages are hosted in the UK they should be showing up for a UK-specific search.

Note they said try. They are not guaranteeing anything. Nor did they mention future intent.

The main problem is that Inktomi (and possibly others?) do not include .com site hosted in the UK in their UK-only results. The effect of this is that a Mr or Ms Average who access the web via an ISP page with an MSN search will just use the search facilty as presented to them, which in the UK means they will never find my site.

Logically the Inktomi/MSN problem could be solved by a duplicate site with a .co.uk name. To get an "official" view on this I mentioned it to Google UK. As expected they replied:

We would not suggest creating duplicate pages with the co.uk domain name. This will probably end up causing more trouble than it will fix.

As my site is basically an info site. it would be difficult to create a .co.uk site with different content. And what would be the point?

The only solution I can come up with is to create a duplicate .co.uk site and ban it from Google. But that is not as easy as it sounds - I have enough problems getting meaningful links to just one site, let alone two! :)

At the current time, if mine were a commercial site, I would go for a .co.uk site hosted in the UK with a specifically UK content. It's the only way to get around the different approaches taken by Google and the other search engines.

Namaste




msg:130969
 6:24 pm on Nov 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

The default setting on Google.co.uk is "the web" My question is how many people select the "pages from the UK" option...anyone have any info on this?

Prophet




msg:130970
 2:00 pm on Nov 27, 2003 (gmt 0)

UK IP Address regardless of the extension ranks higher than a .co.uk domain name on google.co.uk (pages from the uk) whereas on yahoo.co.uk (pages from the uk) the .co.uk extension ranks higher.

This was tested with a .co.uk and .com domain name. The .com hosted in England, the .co.uk hosted in the states. Both sites were optimised for the same term and appear next to each other in the global serps.

P

MHes




msg:130971
 8:11 pm on Nov 27, 2003 (gmt 0)

"whereas on yahoo.co.uk (pages from the uk) the .co.uk extension ranks higher"

The .com won't appear at all, yahoo only show .co.uk, wherever the hosting is.

"UK IP Address regardless of the extension ranks higher than a .co.uk"

Nope, as I said earlier, our .co.uk site hosted in the states ranks higher when the uk only button is clicked. I can sticky you examples if you wish.

JudgeJeffries




msg:130972
 2:02 am on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have a dotUKdotCom site hosted in USA and it doesnt show on a local UK Google search

teppic




msg:130973
 2:17 am on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

Just to add my experiences, I have a .co.uk site hosted in the US (uk php/mysql hosting costs are prohibitive) and haven't had any problems getting listed in a UK only search.

MHes




msg:130974
 8:56 am on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

"I have a dotUKdotCom site hosted in USA and it doesnt show on a local UK Google search "

That would be normal, it is effectively a .com hosted in the USA and so logically has no recognised association to the UK. Harsh I accept but thats the way it seems to work.

Yidaki




msg:130975
 9:01 am on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

>The default setting on Google.co.uk is "the web"
>My question is how many people select the "pages
>from the UK" option...anyone have any info on this?

If i compare this with how google.de works:

I guess nobody will ever check the box "pages from DE". But aol.de uses exactly this as its default. So maybe aol.co.uk uses "pages from the UK" as its default ...

curlykarl




msg:130976
 9:14 am on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

That would be normal, it is effectively a .com hosted in the USA and so logically has no recognised association to the UK. Harsh I accept but thats the way it seems to work.

Nonsense :)

I have dropped my .com's in favour of .co.uk's because I was receiving no traffic from uk only searches on Google.

My .co.uk's are hosted in Germany and show up on both searches (web and .co.uk) on Google, but the old .com's I had would not show on uk only searches.

My products are uk specific so I only really want uk customers.

Karl :)

theleveller




msg:130977
 10:21 am on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

Interesting reading, I always went for .com's hosted in the UK but have noticed a good %age of traffic are US based.

Our .com site is now a PR5 after a year of mistakes and pitfalls.

How would someone go about favouring the .co.uk domains that have registered? Can i leave all my .com's registered with the directorys, engines etc and do a permanent redirect? or is that just a waste of time?

Cheers

the leveller

Ross




msg:130978
 10:36 am on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

Karl,
I think that you owe MHES an apology. If you go back and read JudgeJeffries post a little more carefully you see that he has a .uk.com domain, and that's what MHES was referring to. I think that we all agree that .co.uk sites show up in UK searches wherever they are hosted.

piskie




msg:130979
 12:40 pm on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have one particular .co.uk site that always ranked top 10 for its 5 primary search terms and was hosted in the UK.

The Service provider unilateraly and without informing me moved to USA hosting.

This .co.uk site held its positions seamlessly but a similar .com site for a different client droppeded through the floor for a Google,co,uk "pages from the UK" search.

Ross




msg:130980
 1:45 pm on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

Piskie,
Isn't that what you'd expect. A .COM site hosted in the US, how would we expect Google or any other search engine to realise that the site was actually a UK one?

curlykarl




msg:130981
 1:56 pm on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

Karl,
I think that you owe MHES an apology. If you go back and read JudgeJeffries post a little more carefully you see that he has a .uk.com domain, and that's what MHES was referring to. I think that we all agree that .co.uk sites show up in UK searches wherever they are hosted.

Agreed :)

I read it as a .co.uk......sorry dude my mistake :)

Karl

alexswalker




msg:130982
 2:00 pm on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

I run a UK business on a .com with a US webserver. I must admit I didn't realise about the UK IP thing and Google. Anyway, I show up fine in the uk sites only search filter.

Maybe it is this because I have this line in my head?

<meta http-equiv="Content-Language" content="en-gb">

Maybe it is because the word 'UK' appears on all my pages?

Maybe because I submitted my site via the co.uk add url form?

Maybe it is because UK sites link to me?

Maybe it has nothing to do with any of the above but it just seems odd that I show up okay yet don't have co.uk or uk IP.

Alex

piskie




msg:130983
 5:41 pm on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

Yes Ross that is exactly what I would expect.

I included the .co.uk and .com examples just to illustrate the point that a UK domain hosted in the US did not suffer for a UK search but a .com hosted in the US did.

engine




msg:130984
 6:39 pm on Nov 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

Before we all drift too much, the filtering techniques are fluid, as well as depending upon the service you're checking.

The safest approach for UK is to host the site in the uk with a .co.uk domain.

.com's have always shown up on Google.co.uk if the site is hosted in the UK.

As soon as you host any site somewhere else you are running the risk of losing the added value given to the uk host.

To prove our point, we experimented with a German-based host/IP and lost all the uk test domains from the serps.

Additionally, there are other factors involved here that need to be taken into account: DMOZ UK directory listings and other UK directory listings, Yahoo UK directory listing, etc. All these help point to the site being a UK site and will factor into the equation.

johnser




msg:130985
 5:45 pm on Nov 30, 2003 (gmt 0)

>>>My question is how many people select the "pages from the UK" option.

According to offical ISP survey stats I read about a year ago, UK-only searches on G.co.uk were 8% of the total

I'm sceptical if its even that high.

Also, we've about 50 x .co.uk's hosted in US & all show in UK-only SERPs.

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