An ‘IP address’ is not some jargon, but a common term we come across in our day-to-day. Still, 98% of internet users don’t know what IP addresses actually are. Most people don’t even know about dedicated IP address benefits.
It’s almost as if knowing your house number and which street you live on, but not knowing why exactly you need or have an address.
Sounds bizarre right? It is!
In order to know what a dedicated IP address is and why you might need it, it’s crucial to understand what an IP address is and how exactly it works.
So let’s dig in!
Table of content:
- What is an IP address?
- What is a dedicated IP address?
- Benefits of dedicated IP address
- Misconception related to dedicated IP address
What Is An IP Address?
IP stands for Internet Protocol. This ‘internet protocol’ is a set of guidelines the internet uses to facilitate communication and transfer data online.
The internet is basically an interconnection of different types of computers. Just like homes, these computers also need addresses so that bowsers can access them and fetch data and websites.
Confused? Let us simplify it for you.
How do you think websites appear on your computer? Every website in the world is hosted on a special computer known as a ‘server’.
Whenever you type in a website URL in your browser-
- The browser looks for the domain name of the website.
- Then it looks for the IP address of the server your website is hosted on.
- Once it is able to locate the server, it fetches files/website/data you asked for and sends it to you.
Without the IP address, a browser would not know where to look in order to fetch the data you’re requesting.
Picture this, if you want to send a courier to a friend of yours who lives in another country, you’ll have to know his exact physical location. If you want to talk to your friend, you’ll have to know his phone number.
Just like that, if different computers want to communicate with each other and exchange data online, they’ll need specific addresses to be able to do so.
What is A Dedicated IP Address?
A dedicated IP address is the one that is connected solely to your website. Meaning, if you type in your IP address in your web browser, it will directly take you to your website.
A shared IP address is used by many domains. If a few websites are hosted on the same server (they’re using shared hosting), then they will have the same IP address. However, if you’re using dedicated hosting, then that server’s IP address will belong solely to you.
Note: There are cases when you’re using shared hosting but a dedicated IP address. This is possible because one server can have different IP addresses.
Dedicated IP Addresses Benefits
In a shared IP address, you will be affected by the internet activities of other websites using your IP address.
For example, if another website sharing your IP address is indulging in spamming email activities, then the entire IP address will be blocked by the mail server. Other domains that are also using the IP address will not be taken into account.
This can be a major set back, especially for eCommerce websites because they have to send bulk emails on a daily basis.
In a dedicated IP address, you will only have to worry about your internet activities. You will have full autonomy over your internet reputation, and won’t have to worry about getting blocked or blacklisted by other servers.
Another benefit of dedicated IP addresses is that sometimes domain names aren’t accessible. If you use dedicated IP addresses then you can easily open your website by typing in your IP address in your web browser.
Interesting read: Why is Google crazy about SSL certificates.
There are a lot of misconceptions related to dedicated IP addresses. For example,
- A dedicated IP address does NOT improve your website SEO.
- It has no effect on a website’s Google rank.
- It does not reduce a website’s downtime or enhance its speed. The speed and downtime depend on whether or not you have shared or dedicated hosting.
Dedicated IP addresses seem to only serve a limited purpose. But for websites who don’t want to be exposed to the risk of getting blocked by other servers because of other domains, it’s worth a try!
Want to know more about dedicated IP addresses or dedicated hosting? Talk to your experts.