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Google Thinks My Site is From the UK

An Australian site, hosted in the US.



10:54 pm on Dec 12, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I have a .com site with an Australian flavour that is hosted on a US server (moved previously between US and AU servers), with 2 DMOZ listings (one in the AU subcategory), and I've just seen a flood of UK-only searches bring visitors to my site.

Incidentally I also spotted a Singapore-only search bring up our url in the last few days.

Is google confused? Or are these country specific searches somewhat fuzzy?


12:59 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

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1:56 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

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You probably have it covered but have you checked the ip of the host against a who is to see if its physically located where they say it is. Up untill now i would have said they were fairly consistant.


2:23 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Double checked the whois / IP location --
Michigan is still in the United States, right? ;)

[edited by: celenoid at 2:51 am (utc) on Dec. 14, 2004]


2:28 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Pages from the site are currently showing up for simultaneous search phrases under "pages from Singapore", as well as "pages from the UK".

The site is only a few 100 pages large. I do have *one* mention of "london", and one or two mentions of the word "singapore" within the site. Many mentions of Australia, yet no mention in Google's AU index.

Yahoo thinks I'm in Australia.

I don't know where I am.


4:41 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member bigdave is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

It may be that you just don't rank as well against the additional competitors in the US and AU searches. Or the algos might be somewhat different, and you are able to beat them out in other countries.

Or they may just be confused.


5:14 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks for the suggestion. Though I am #1 for said keyphrase for non-regionally-specific searches (ie. on google.com). I am also #1 for said keyphrase in SG and UK (though for inexplicably different pages within the site).

using site:mydomain in .com, .sg and .co.uk brings up different numbers of results.

Confused, I think.


6:21 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Could it be all UK searchers are now being dumped(sorry redirected) onto the UK Google that had previously used the .com Google.

Would this explain your sudden rise in UK hits.


8:20 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

celenoid, sticky me, I will send you to a site that will show geographically where your site is hosted based on IP , not by whois.

Its suppossed to be similar to how google locates you.


9:16 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Are you using British rather than American spelling?


11:11 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

celenoid, here are some areas to double check:

1. where are the NAMESERVERS for your domain hosted? Not the webserver - the nameservers. That might be the issue.

2. How old is the DMOZ AU regional listing? Is the AU regional DMOZ listing reflected as yet in the Google directory?

Let us know.




11:56 am on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

A related site in Belgium once linked to my site, but identified me as an Englishman.

I wrote in that I'm from California, so the Belgians turned me into a Canadian.

I still have a nice link there. - Larry


10:45 pm on Dec 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thank you for all the helpful replies!

glengara, the site has been written in Australian/British spelling. As a rule of thumb I do my best to "neutralise" (or neutralify ;)) the language that I use online by phrasing a particular way (though some British spelling may have slipped through).

Chris_D, The AU dmoz listing is at least a few years old, and is reflected in the google directory. DMOZ on the google toolbar for the site lists another entry it has in the US/world category. The nameserver is located in Dalas, Texas.

I don't believe my site is incredibly complicated or special; I'm curious if anyone else has had similar experiences with Google geo targeting.


1:32 pm on Dec 15, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Hi celenoid,

I can show you a .com domain, with an Australian DMOZ listing, and a global DMOZ listing, with an Australian nameserver - and Google correctly lists it as an Australian site.

I can't prove it to you - but I think a big part of the answer is in the nameserver location.... are you sure BOTH nameservers are in the US? Many hosting companies use nameservers in different parts of the world, on different trunks, in case there is an issue with a nameserver.


10:16 pm on Dec 15, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hi Chris_D, I checked the location of both the IP's, and they are both in the US. The site is hosted in Michigan, and the nameserver sits in Dallas.

Why Google thinks one of my pages is Singaporean while others are from the UK is beyond me.

site:www.mysite.com (US): 305 results
site:www.mysite.com (SG): 1 result
site:www.mysite.com (UK): 96 results
site:www.mysite.com (AU): 0 results

This is really not a big problem for us as we have a global target and rank well in most cases, but I thought it was intriguing and may offer some insight for others who are targetting various countries...


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