What is a Dedicated IP address?
A dedicated IP (Internet Protocol) is a unique Internet address dedicated exclusively to a single hosting account. Normally, several hosting accounts reside on a single server and share that server's IP address. Dedicated IP addresses are usually used for large/medium/small SSL-encrypted secure websites and particularly large/medium/small and/or traffic-heavy sites. Most shared hosting users have no particular need for a dedicated IP address.
However, a dedicated IP address for your hosting account enables you to:
- View your website via its IP address.
- Access your accounts by FTP or the Web when the domain name is otherwise inaccessible, such as during domain name propagation periods.
- Ensure faster response during periods of high traffic load.
- Set up SSL protection on your website.
If you have a business oriented website then you probably will need a dedicated IP address for your site. Especially if you have a merchant account and accept credit card payments on your site. You can't even get an SSL certificate for your website until you have a dedicated IP address. You can get around this by using a PayPal shopping cart or something else hosted off your site. But, most people don't like the idea of sending the customer to a new address to close the deal.
There is also the SEO or search engine optimizations concerns to consider. Many people have found that sites with a dedicated IP address do mysteriously better in the search engine results than those utilizing shared IPs. Often times security concerns drive people to upgrade their cheap web hosting account to include a dedicated IP address.
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