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Moving a site to cloud hosting - SEO Implications

9:03 am on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

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We have a site that is being moved to Amazon's cloud hosting.

The site is a .co.uk domain, and is targeted very much at a UK audience.

I can't envisage a problem moving to cloud hosting, but it does mean moving from a server located in the UK (and therefore a UK IP address) to the site being delivered on different IPs, which may well not be UK-based.

Any thoughts on this from how this might affect how Google looks at the site from an SEO perspective? Does anyone have experience of doing such a move? I'm sure there are benefits (speed,etc.)that will be made from the move, and just wanted to make sure that there aren't any negatives we need to be aware of or anything we should look to do as we move.
10:00 am on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I've moved a number of sites to cloud hosting and similar services over the past year or so, and I've not experienced any problems at all.

It looks like you've spotted the biggest potential issue, which is with geographic targeting, since cloud hosting may not be in your target country when Google visits. But, if you have a regional name like co.uk, I think you're unlikely to see any impact at all.

If your new host is unreliable or there is downtime, then you might see a few blips, but my personal experience has been that it won't cause any problems.
10:56 am on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Cloud computing is not equal to (global) load balancing. Your AWS cloud instance and its IP will be based on whichever Region you've selected when you've created it. Granted that it won't be a UK IP anymore, but it won't change based on your visitors.
11:03 am on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

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We're not using cloudfront (which would be delivering from an IP according to where the visitor is based like you said), but we are going to be using a load-balancing cluster approach - and it's this that is assigned a different IP from time-to-time, and won't be UK-based.
12:20 pm on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

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different IP from time-to-time

Sanjuu, a while back I moved my entire site (including the base html files) to a CDN. My IP was different based on the visitor's location. I have not noticed any impact of this on traffic volume, but my site is relatively small, so ymmw.

If your site focuses on UK, and is now UK-based, do you not think your speed my be negatively affected by the move to Amazon?
12:33 pm on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Speed my be affected (the hosting will be at their European servers in Ireland, so geographically not too far from the UK), but it provides scalability and resilience - and also appears to be a lot more cost effective.

Will be able to let you know for sure in a number of weeks!
4:18 pm on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Do you think the site speed will go down or up?

I don't know if this data is current, but Amazon's CDN used to suck: [chrismeller.com...]

If they've fixed that, you should see a speed increase like any other CDN.

Any chance you can post before/after times once you've migrated, please?
2:48 pm on Apr 25, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Won't be able to compare the speed directly, as site that will be on the new server setup will be a completely new codebase as the site has been redeveloped completely over the past few months.

So not sure it will be possible to compare like with like.
2:38 pm on Apr 26, 2012 (gmt 0)

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This may be a dumb question, but I've been wondering if there's a way to host a static website on Google Drive. (By "static website", I mean static html only, with no scripts.)

If you could do it, and you stayed within Google Drive's bandwidth and storage limits, you would get free hosting forever. I wonder if there's a way to set this up.

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