Response Time, Google & GoDaddy

September 24th, 2009

For those of you who are hosting your site in Godaddy and experiencing some longer response time than usual, well you are not the only one. I have experience a longer response time for sites who are using database such as wordpress blogs.

At the beginning I thought it was only my own account, but after checking all of my clients site who uses GoDaddy, It experiences the same problem started at September 17. (See Graph Below).

Response Time
Data from

I had problem with this site response time during june and July since I had a high increase in traffic but I have made the necessary changes to improve it in August but as you can see the increase since the 17th and 18t of Sept. where response time have went from less than 1 sec to 6-10 sec mainly depending on the size of database queries. This time it wasn’t my code fault.
Of course I emailed GoDaddy about the issue and they reply very fast that the issue is known and should be fixed in 24 hours. The issue had improved but it is not as good as before. Now I am still seeing 1-2 sec response time when before it was an avarage of 0.7 sec.

What is response time and why should we bother about it?

Response time: Is the time it takes your website server to response to an inquiry, regardless of the site size, flash or images.

Why Should we bother about it?


It will take users who goes to your site more time to see the website content.
The browser will show “Waiting for” and sometimes it will even show “website is taking to much time to response” message which is similar to the message when a website doesn’t exisit.

Google and SEO:

Google and other search engine crawl your site almost every day, the engine robots get the response time into account and report it back to the engine. One of the factor of which Google decide whether to put you in first page is depended also on the website response time.

Another important issue with search engines is for larger sites, the website owner would like Google to index all of his pages. Let say a website have 100,000 pages and Google only show 10,000 index pages for this site. One of the big reason for that may be response time, if it takes Google robots too long to download the website pages they will ignore it.

What should be a good response time and how do I check it?

Response time in general should be less than 1 sec (1,000 milisec), but for better results in Google it should have about 0.4 sec.
You can either use outside tools to check your reponse time such as:

or look in your Google Webmaster Tools account on the Crawl stats (Same as the Graph above).

Google Webmaster will give you an average of all of your pages and it is your job to find out if it is one page that is increasing the response time average or it is an overall problem.

Response time problems and how do I fix them:

Usually reponse time problem occur when your website is starting to receive more traffic and many times response time increases due to hosting failers, but if you have the same problem for a longer period it might be a code or a database query problem.

Problems & Solutions:

  • Hosting – Increase your hosting plan or remove it from a shared server, some servers response time is better than others, Godaddy for example is known for a slow response time, INetU is an exapmple for a server that have faster response time.
  • Page (code) – Response time is not due to a large image or flash movie, it is due to a large html file size or a server code that runs before the page loads. Find out which page takes the longest time to show its HTML and try to figure out why. Many website owners now days uses Ajax to do some of the calculation after the page loads, but this information is hidden from Google Robots.
  • Database Queries – Code problems and html files size are usually not the issue since code run very fast and usually website code is not that complex, database queries are a more of a common problem and improving them is not an easy task. As mention above when the site is new usually it runs smoothly since the database is small and queries runs very fast, but as the website grows so does the database and the number of queries that runs at the same time. This usually cause queries to load slow and make the overall response time to increase. There are automatic tools that helps you search for the query that takes longer to load and also there are DBA(Data Base Admin) specialist who can help you fix the problem. As mention above it is not an easy task…

Database issue and response time are usually a more complex issues, and improving a database/server response time requires higher knowledge of working with servers and databases, that is why I appreciate DBAs for their skills.

In the mean while I sure hope that GoDaddy will improve their database response time and that soon it will go back to normal.

PageRank or Not to PageRank -> Long Tail!

June 28th, 2009

Since the PageRank algorithm was introduced, webmasters and SEO consultants have been on a race to receive higher pagerank to their sites and be number on on top keywords. But recently I feel that its not so important to pursue these goals anymore.

Don’t get me wrong, pagerank is still the key to Google Algorithm, but the hours spend on getting high pagerank links , submitting to directories, blogs or forums doesn’t seem to worth it.

Why? very simple, Long Tail Keywords! Since I got to Peru I am trying to explain it to my customers which are sometimes stuck with old SEO and Websites concepts. All of the customers want to have high pagerank and be number one in a list of 10 keywords.

For example lets use one keyword that is very popular “Peru Travel”, well that is the most competitive keyword in Peru, there are probably 1,000 websites with high pagerank that are trying to get top positions on that keyword, yes it is possible to be on the first page on that keyword but it will take a year or two for a new website to archive that.

The solution is using Long Tail Keywords, ‘Peru Travel Information”, “Peru Travel Guide” etc. it probably have less competition or no competition at all. If you calculate the amount of visits if you add up 10 long tail keywords you will get more visits than one very popular keywords and guess what if you do it right you can archive it in 3 months and not a year or two. Also after you’ll be number one on several long tail keywords it is most likely you will automatically be on the first page on very popular ones as well.

Here is the Long Tail Graph from Wikipedia:

This graph show that the amount of visits from popular keywords are less than the amount of visits you can get from the infinite number of long tail keywords you can create from the same topic.

Another factor is that users are getting smarter, if you search “peru travel” you will probably get portals, wikis or government sites about Peru, but if you’ll search more specific keyword like “Travel to Macchu Picchu Peru Low Prices” You will get the agency or agency compression sites that will help you get the travel package that you need.

Now if the users knows that it is our job to let our customers, the web sites owners to know the same thing. Working hours for more than a year to have the slight chance to be #1 on one Keyword or get to PageRank 7 compared to the work on changing inner page titles and get minimum external links on those long tail keywords and have 100% success in less time.

If you’ll get what I’m trying to explain here… there is no way you’ll not succeed in your SEO efforts!

Please post a comment if you have any question regarding the long tail concept.

Google Changes Algorithm – Conclusions

June 26th, 2009

I am truely sorry I haven’t been writing for a while but since then I had 8 more clients and lots of website to fix/build.This post is the Conclusion of my finding about Google algorithm change, from my first post two month ago.

  1. Title exact word:
    Websites titles used to get the benefit on similar words or phrasing (similar to adwords broad match), but recently I have noticed that in SEO it is not like that anymore. For example we used to have titles like:
    “Travel tips, guides & information” and we used to get the benefits for:
    “travel tips”
    “travel tip”
    “travel guide”
    “travel guides”
    “travel information”
    But now when I have checked some of the results “travel tips” (just an example) is on the first page and “travel tip” is no where to be found as for the other keywords combination. I guess now the correct title for this website will be:
    “Travel tips, Travel tip, Travel guides, Travel guide & Travel information”
    Just make it longer (and ugly) but I guess this is the way it should be now, another option is to have your inner pages with similar content as the homepage with these variation of the keywords.
  2. PageRank Sculpting:
    For years I was using nofollow to help maintain the pagerank with in my site, after reading some of Matt Cutts articles.
    First in 2005 Seeing nofollow links.
    Then again in 2007 in numerous websites: Matt Cutts on Nofollow, Links-Per-Page and the Value of Directories.
    But recently Matt Cutts had change all of the with this article: PageRank Sculpting.
    It seems like Google does lower your pagerank flow if you have “nofollow” in the example he gives, if you had a page with pagerank 10 and you had 10 links in your site 5 of them with nofollow, the 5 without the nofollow would get 2 pagerank each.
    Since last year google had change that, the five without nofollow will get 1 pagerank each, so basically it doesn’t matter anymore if you use nofollow or not. Just help you to keep spammers away.
  3. Number of links:
    I have notice that recently pages with a lot of links (more than a 100) does not get indexed anymore or are being removed, I knew that before but never it actually removed a page from the indexing, I guess that Google is more strict with this rule, which in my opinion is very good. Keep your pages with 50-100 links and you’ll be ok.
  4. Since January we are seeing that pages update more frequently especially from blog posts, I believe there is better ranking for newer materials that means that if you blog frequently you might get better ranking on your posts.

Well that is all I could find out in recent months, it might have started before I have noticed it, but as we know small changes to google algorithm happens all the time, therefore keep reading SEO blogs and try your best to find out how to improve your website.

If you noticed anything else please comment about it.

Google is changing its Ranking Algorithm

April 21st, 2009

Have you notice some weird movement in Google SERPs in the last few days?

Its seems like you are not the only one!

Google is set to change its ranking Algorithm in the next few days, what is the reason?
There seems to be many blackhat spammers and malicious websites that manage to get into top positions in popular terms. It started as a small group of blackhat spammers but became a huge phenomena that effect most of the popular niches.

A report from the security company PandaLabs show that more than a million link targeting malicious webpages ranking for auto part searches alone. A story written by Jason Lee Miller from WebProNews, show an example of 5 top searches that are links to Cybercrooks websites who manage to manipulate Google into “thinking” they are top news websites.

What is Google is going to do about it?

We just all have to wait and see and learn from our result what had changed and what had not. Google Dance is something that happens every 3-6 months, if you practice SEO, a good way to find what were the changes is analyze your results and see what had changed, read SEO blogs and forums and don’t forget Matt Cuts blog!

Lets hope this change will be quick with not to much changes that effect the “good” sites.

Good luck…

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March 19th, 2009

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