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Stopping Search Engine Bots From Eating Up My Bandwidth

     
9:58 am on Apr 29, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Below is a message from my host provider:
It appears you have a misconfigured SEO which causes search engine bots to use up your bandwidth. You would need to upgrade your shared hosting account to a package with more bandwidth or wait till your bandwidth allocation is refreshed.
My question:
How do I stop the above from reoccurring?
1:07 pm on Apr 29, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Welcome to WebmasterWorld Spafu

It appears you have a misconfigured SEO


Please ask your host to explain this statement. They are purporting to know the cause but without giving you an explanation other than spending more more for something you may not need..
8:30 pm on Apr 29, 2019 (gmt 0)

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How do I stop the above from reoccurring?
If that was a genuine, verbatim quote from your hosts, the answer is simple: change hosts.

Unless, that is, “SEO” has an alternative meaning* that somehow has never, ever come up on these forums.

* That is, ahem, an alternative but still website-related meaning. I don’t suppose your host is concerned about the configuration of your Secondary Equity Offer or, perish the thought, your Septic Enforcement Office.
9:58 pm on Apr 29, 2019 (gmt 0)

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simple: change hosts

That's a great place to start, based purely on your reported message. That said, bots are a drain on bandwidth. I have a feeling you may have a very low bandwidth package, to maintain that you will need to work to block bots.

Your Septic Enforcement Office is causing search engine bots to use up your bandwidth... That would be an unfortunate misconfiguration...
12:50 am on Apr 30, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Fire up your site on a free metrics service like Google's pagespeed or GTMetrix and check for obvious performance issues.

Then find a new host, they've just told you that you can never succeed with them since they can't handle the traffic you already get.

Do give them the courtesy of responding to a request for specific information, however. I have seen wordpress "similar posts" plugins simply hammer their SQL database on shared plans causing the host to need to act to protect other customers. It might be something like that.
3:58 am on Apr 30, 2019 (gmt 0)

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welcome to WebmasterWorld [webmasterworld.com], Spafu!

which causes search engine bots to use up your bandwidth

have they identified which bots are using the most bandwidth?
have you done any server access log file analysis?

if the problem is with googlebot, you can file a special request [google.com] in GSC.

if you still have access to the old GSC for that property you can get 90 days of relief using the "Limit Google's maximum crawl rate" feature in GSC's Site Settings [google.com]
4:09 am on Apr 30, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Whiitelist the bots you will allow (pretty small number) and ban the rest. If your ISP comes band and says the same thing again, somebody is playing games.
8:18 am on Apr 30, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Thank you all for your very helpful responses, your responses are giving me possible solutions to this challenge. I am already taking them into consideration.
6:31 pm on May 1, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Analyze your image traffic. Odds are you can add a noindex response tag to image files to keep them out of image search and not lose much traffic. You'll save bandwidth and keep image thieves off your site.
10:06 pm on May 1, 2019 (gmt 0)

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ISPs are offering shared hosting at absurdly low rates (and configurations) just to get you started. Very next thing (for them) is to upgrade you to a more expensive package. Make sure that message is not really a sales attempt.

Meanwhile, check your logs. You can verify their claim, and at the same time, take steps to control that bot abuse.