Will this affect the site's ranking with Google and if so, how?

  • 1
    Er. Why is your site predictably down every single day? And if it's being done intentionally, then how? (Is it actually unavailable or are you presenting some form of maintenance screen, etc.)
    – Su'
    Jan 22, 2013 at 22:52
  • 1
    It is usually 3 am. We receive updates notifying us when the site is down. Will the effect our SEO?
    – Jennifer
    Jan 22, 2013 at 22:59
  • Being down for 15 mins every 24 hours equates to an uptime of 99% - is this what your host advertises?
    – MrWhite
    Jan 23, 2013 at 9:11
  • Not only that. If you get any other downtime (say, an hour or two once in a year) then your uptime can easily drop well below 99%. Jan 23, 2013 at 13:17
  • @Jennifer My second question has potential relevance to how much this will affect your standings. But it's probably more important to explain why this is apparently acceptable to you as a daily occurrence.
    – Su'
    Jan 23, 2013 at 21:03

2 Answers 2


First of all, unless you planned on the site going down every day at the same time, you have a hosting problem and you should fix that ASAP. There just isn't any good reason for your current hosting provider to go offline that often, for that long, and that consistently. If it is a planned outage, please be sure to serve up a notice so there isn't a bare 404 error page (assuming the site can even respond properly during the outage).

To more directly answer the question, this could have a negative effect on your SEO in a couple of ways. If Google is trying to index the site during the outage window and it consistently can't get a response or gets a 404 error then you will probably incur some quality penalties and/or have pages dropped out of the index.

The other thing to look out for is negative user behavior due to the frequent outages. Going from a link in Google to a dead site or dead page will probably result in a quick bounce back to Google. If you have a high bounce rate, the implication is that there is poor content or a poor user experience on your site and Google will penalize you for quality reasons.

In short, it certainly will not HELP your ranking and it will very possibly hurt you.

  • thanks! I will talk to my developer about the hosting problem.
    – Jennifer
    Jan 23, 2013 at 21:57

Google, and all the other Search Engines, crawlers, bots, etc., crawl your site every day (if your site is big enough indeed). Google crawls the important pages for changes at a higher rate, like your homepage and your highest quality content pages, and randomly the rest of your pages to make sure that it's up to date.

Now, the pages that randomly Google will try to crawl during that 15 minutes will return a 404 or a 500 HTTP response, and will eventually be penalized, but will slowly recover as they get correctly indexed again.

Also penalized, but with less harm, will be the pages that link to those temporary 404 pages, and a little less SEO harm will get the pages that are being linked from those pages.

Personally I wouldn't bother that much if it's only 15 minutes, take into account that many pages do maintenance. Just try it to be 5 minutes or less to minimize the harm to your site.


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