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Old 11-08-12
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Default Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

I am looking at moving my ecommerce website to US hosting website for various reason mainly PCI compliance.

Is there a noticeable speed difference in page loading time etc just from being further away? With ecommerce every extra second allows customer time to change their mind so page loading time is very important.

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Old 11-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

Site load time is also determined by the server load and disk I/O speed.
Ive seen servers in aus take 15 seconds to send a page and servers in the US come down in 2. (similar content)
Also if the files in your site a large, Hi res pics - long flash vids etc
The difference will be more noticable. But the average site will not be as noticable.

Steve

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Old 11-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

I've found it's more about the quality and type of hosting rather than location.

Shared hosting can be ordinary anywhere, I found a huge difference going to VPS hosting (Linode), sites ran like greased lightning, got sick of managing the server though.

Currently I'm using a managed platform based in New York, seems fine but I'm only running a couple of light content, low traffic sites so can't really tell, seems quick enough when using the admin backend.

A good VPS plan wherever it is, should offer a guarantee of available RAM.

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Old 11-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

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Originally Posted by Fishx99 View Post
I am looking at moving my ecommerce website to US hosting website for various reason mainly PCI compliance.
Thanks
Seems like you are doing exactly the opposite that we see in general in the Australian market. Are you moving the same website that you have now to the USA or changing the technology and rebuilding? If the issue you are trying to solve is PCI compliance and you are not changing the website then just moving it to a different host won't necessarily solve the problem. The host that you use is only part of the factors in the PCI compliance. Running a non-compliant website on a compliant host still means it is non-compliant. Australia has a number of good PCI compliant webhosts that are controlled by Australian regulation and laws and not US. That means you might actually have a chance of pursuing any potential issues if they come up. Your clients data is also protected by Australian law. You can loose all control of your own and client data when hosted overseas.

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Originally Posted by Fishx99 View Post
Is there a noticeable speed difference in page loading time etc just from being further away? With ecommerce every extra second allows customer time to change their mind so page loading time is very important.
Thanks
The time difference between various locations is referred to as latency. On average between Australia and the USA it is 200 - 250 ms. By comparison between Sydney and Melbourne it is around 30 - 40ms so basically the USA has 5 times more latency. That does not mean that your website slows down by 0.2 of a second. The visitors browser may need to call on the webserver many times 10's even 100's to completely load a website. So the same latency is added for each additional call and is compounding. You can find some information about the latency at http://www.verizonbusiness.com/au/ab...twork/latency/. However most providers have similar stats.

If you are hosting where you know there might be some latency then a good web cache strategy is important. You can also investigate content delivery systems (CDN) like CloudFlare or Akamai.

In addition to the latency there is also the issue of service times and maintenance windows. Service providers in the USA will do maintenance basically in the middle of the Australian business day.

There is also some impact on SEO but if you use the Google webmaster tool and setup correctly you can over come that to the most part. However if your target business area is Australia then sites of an equivalent rank hosted in Australia will get better local Australian results. If you are targeting your business outside of Australia it will make little difference.

The other issue is that if you are using shared hosting in the USA you will in general find that there will be more contention for server resources as they seem to pack their systems more densely, at least the cheaper ones do. So if possible ask for service level guarantees that include server resources.

The key issue really is where your online business is targeted. If it is the USA then hosting there makes a lot of sense. If your core business focus is in Australia then it does not make sense.

John

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Old 11-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

It is an x- cart shopping cart and I wanted to change the technology to use x- payments. Ideally I need hosting with good experience in x-cart carts that is also PCI compliant - these seem to only be found outside Australia.

Core business is catering to Australian market.

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Old 11-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Debrincat View Post
There is also some impact on SEO but if you use the Google webmaster tool and setup correctly you can over come that to the most part. However if your target business area is Australia then sites of an equivalent rank hosted in Australia will get better local Australian results. If you are targeting your business outside of Australia it will make little difference.
Good stuff John but I have to disagree that server location has an effect on ranking. I believe this is a common misunderstanding based around the fact that Google places every website in a region and for .com domains it uses the server location to work that out. This regionalisation is used when people use the "only show results in xxxx" option which is a filter and has no influence on actual ranking. Local ranking is mainly determined by your content and if local websites link to you.

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Old 12-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

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Originally Posted by Tiggerito View Post
Good stuff John but I have to disagree that server location has an effect on ranking. I believe this is a common misunderstanding based around the fact that Google places every website in a region and for .com domains it uses the server location to work that out. This regionalisation is used when people use the "only show results in xxxx" option which is a filter and has no influence on actual ranking. Local ranking is mainly determined by your content and if local websites link to you.
Yep, correct.

And with broadband connection speeds nowadays, for majority of sites there will be no noticeable difference in load speeds.

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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiggerito View Post
Good stuff John but I have to disagree that server location has an effect on ranking..
@Tiggerito and @Zava Design this issue has been long discussed and here is the Google answer . Basically it is what I wrote. I said that "sites of an equivalent rank hosted in Australia will get better local Australian results.". This is correct and we have seen this happen with sites that we host here in Australia that are targeted to the USA and also overseas targeted at Australia.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiggerito View Post
This regionalisation is used when people use the "only show results in xxxx" option which is a filter and has no influence on actual ranking.
Filtering search results to a particular location is an entirely different issue. What Google has been doing more proactively is serving up local results and you can improve the targeting for local search if you use the right approach - Google local search.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishx99
It is an x- cart shopping cart and I wanted to change the technology to use x- payments.
@Fishx99 you do realise that by using x-payments you just add another layer to the payment process. If you are using a payment gateway why don't you investigate a hosted payment page where the actual payment page is not on your server (like PayPal) but using a local payment provider like eWAY Shared, Payment Express or SecurePay. This will also be PCI compliant as long as the payment page is not on your website.

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Old 13-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

Quote:
@fishx99 you do realise that by using x-payments you just add another layer to the payment process. If you are using a payment gateway why don't you investigate a hosted payment page where the actual payment page is not on your server (like paypal) but using a local payment provider like eway shared, payment express or securepay. This will also be pci compliant as long as the payment page is not on your website.
If I am already using Paypal as hosted payment provider what advantages would there be in offering a local one as well? WIth X-payments my understanding is it is on page payment processing (hence less drop out rate from customers) which is why I was considering going down that path

Shona

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Old 13-08-12
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Default Re: Hosting - loading speed Aus v USA

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Debrincat View Post
@Tiggerito and @Zava Design this issue has been long discussed and here is the Google answer . Basically it is what I wrote. I said that "sites of an equivalent rank hosted in Australia will get better local Australian results.". This is correct and we have seen this happen with sites that we host here in Australia that are targeted to the USA and also overseas targeted at Australia.
Yes, and as that same page says, it will first check webmaster tools, which is the first stop for any new site going live (or should be), and only then it will rely on a range of other factors, of which IP is one of them, but no information given about the weighting against the many other factors they also include. And as I said, my tests have shown negligible IP address weighting compared to the range of other factors.

And I for one am certainly not going to advise my clients to pay more for less with regards to web hosting with negligible real world effect.

Now you have another opinion, that's fine, but I would argue mine is based on just as careful research as yours, we've just come to different conclusions. Won't be the first time that's every occurred, nor the last.

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Last edited by Zava Design; 13-08-12 at 11:28 AM.
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