A proxy acts as a middleman for a connection between your computer and the internet. When you request an action while using a proxy server, the information isn’t sent directly to the internet, it’s sent to the proxy first. Then, the proxy forwards the request to the web. When the request is completed and the webpage can be shown, the proxy is a middleman again, receiving the data before returning it to you.
There are two types of proxies: public and private. Public proxies can be found anywhere, oftentimes for free. Private proxies are generally paid but in return offer a host of benefits including added security. While it may seem tempting to save the money and opt for a free proxy, it can end up costing you more in the long run when your sensitive information is made public for anyone to see. If you’ve been searching for a private, secure way to browse the web and utilize applications, selecting a company to set up reliable proxies for your business may be the answer.
Proxy servers can also be separated by which part of the network is used to work it. The three options are HTTP, SOCKS, and SSL. HTTP is the most popular option and all websites that accept proxy servers accept this form. SOCKS is more powerful than HTTP but the majority of the tasks that are “legal” can be performed with HTTP. Therefore, less websites and applications accept this form. SSL is used to encrypt a secure internet connection, making it highly unpopular with websites and applications. With SSL, your requests will not be first sent to the proxy server, making it just like using a public proxy or none at all.
The Problem with Public Proxies
A private proxy, or dedicated proxy, is a proxy that isn’t accessible to the general public and can only be used by one user at a time. The main reason for utilizing private proxies is to hide or alter the IP address a user is assigned by the ISP. The biggest difference between a private proxy and a public one is the number of users who are given access. Some problems with public proxies include:
- Public proxies offer limited reliability, almost never working. Even if you happen to come across a few that do work, the next time you log on it’s likely to be shut down. Each time this happens, you’re forced to search again for hours to find another decent proxy and update your entire network with the new proxy information.
- Public proxies offer limited security, being a hosting ground for hackers and criminals. You place a lot of your personal information online including credit card numbers, full name and address, secure business information, etc. This information is open and easily accessible to be obtained for crimes such as identity theft and credit card fraud. Many public and free proxies are even specifically created by hackers waiting for utilization from unsuspecting victims to steal information.
- Many companies offer users public proxies for “free” to crowd the server with advertisements that the company gets compensated for by click. They hope that the user will be pulled into getting a server for free and click on the ads while they are waiting for the slow servers to load. Also, some advertisements pop up out of nowhere, causing you to accidentally click on them. The links you click download malicious software, redirect you to illegal websites, spam your browser, etc. all while they’re sitting back and enjoying a profit.
Benefits of Private Proxies
Private proxies can be used to harvest data from google, register multiple accounts on the same membership website, checking search engine rankings, spamming users and malicious activities, and running Scrapebox. Utilizing a private proxy can reveal a number of advantages over public or shared proxies:
Speed. Millions of people use the internet every day and most users share proxies. This can lead the way to congestion from too many users at the same time. On a private proxy, this congestion is cut down, allowing for faster connections. Even peak internet hours will not affect the speed of these connections. This makes private proxies great for businesses when speed is crucial to success. These proxies also save time because some applications rather work within private ones opposed to public.
Anonymity. When using a private proxy, the internet server will register that you aren’t using a proxy at all. This will hide your IP address and geographic location to offer full anonymity as you browse the web. Your entire browsing history including sites visited, browsing times, form fill-ins, etc. will be kept private and secure.
Bypass Firewalls. Many public proxies are known and have a bad reputation on the web and many applications. Therefore, they are blacklisted and automatically stopped by firewalls, security programs, and filters. Private proxies are generally more secure and allow you to easily bypass these programs, allowing for limited wait time.
Location. Private proxies offer users a number of locations from across the world for their IP addresses. Whether you’d like your IP address to be located from Japan, China, or the USA, it’s very simple to arrange.
Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization (SEO) is an important part in getting targeted traffic to your website. This traffic is considered “warm leads” and has a higher chance to convert into paying customers over any other method of marketing. This is why many businesses pay special attention to their actions that will affect their SEO effectiveness.
To be successful at SEO, many practices are required to be started and maintained over time, one of them being successfully creating or finding reliable proxy servers. Private proxies are becoming more and more popular in the business world, specifically with SEO campaigns. Without a private connection, you’re putting your business at risk for:
- Slower connections and increased website down-times
- Poor Google search engine results
- Stolen company information such as bank statements
- Stolen information from your customer’s online purchases
- Stolen information from employees such as social security numbers
- Thousands of dollars’ worth of costs to fix security breaches
The SEO / Proxy Connection
So, how are private proxies related to the SEO industry? SEO practices from your SEO company may include changing or hiding an IP address associated with your browser by using a private proxy. There are a few reasons the company may want to do this:
- Researching a competitor’s SEO practices without disclosing your actual IP address. This allows you to secretly spy on the competition and become one step ahead of them. Even moving up one spot on Google’s search results counts.
- A business that manages social media accounts for their clients, i.e. marketing companies, will be accessing many different accounts from the same IP address. Social media websites may mistake this as spam activity and block all accounts you’ve accessed. This will hinder the SEO success of both your company and your client’s companies. With a private proxy, each account can be accessed from what seems like different IP addresses.
- Google and other search engines base their search results by geographic location, showing different results from different locations. If you’re an internet based company in the UK with the majority of your client base sourced from the USA, this could pose a problem. When a user from the USA searches, IP addresses from this country will appear first. You’ll fall behind your competitors in results who are located in the country your ideal client base is. With a private proxy, you can alter your IP address to seem to be running in the USA.
- Using private proxy servers allows the internet to cache your website in a user’s browser. Each time the user visits your website after the first visit, the cached web page will load faster than it would if the internet had to load the data manually. Google’s search engines love speed and rank website higher that boasts it. Your average loading speeds will decrease, increasing the way Google sees your website.
- When your business is trying to complete acts like creating advertisements, it can be filed as spammed and blocked from the internet. On a private proxy, these limitations are lifted for your business to advertise as you please.
- When your SEO company creates backlinks to improve your Google ranking, you have to be careful to not upset the search engine. Many of the applications to create fake backlinks require private proxies to be in use. Even the applications that don’t require proxies will still highly benefit from them.
- Web scraping is a common marketing practice that allows you to collect data from websites including your competitor’s. However, it is an activity that can easily be banned once noticed. Having a private IP address can allow you to extract data without ever being identified.
- Private proxies allow your business to manage the data that enters and exits the proxy server. This allows your company to better track their SEO results, clicks, and traffic and change their search engine campaign activity until it works for them.
Obtaining Private Proxies for Your Business
The most reliable way to secure private proxies is to hire a company to create them for you. This will save you a headache and ensure the job is done correctly with quality proxies in use. Professionals are more likely to select proxies that work better for you because of their expertise. As a business, this is not an area to be cheap or find ways to save money. Simply put, the higher you’re willing to spend, the better your results will be.
If you decide to hire a company, be sure to take your time and research the company you are selecting for your SEO needs.
Many computers made for corporate use already comes installed with private proxies. In the chance that your company doesn’t possess this feature, a professional is your best bet. Adjusting your computer’s settings manually or inputting the information into one of the popular web browsers (Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera) will take extra work, time, and know-how. If done wrong, the connection can make your information and browsing history less than secure without you even knowing it.
Purchasing Private Proxies Online. Unreliable proxy servers can easily hinder the success of your business. Because of this, it’s imperative to take the time to research any proxy you decide to buy online from a website. Always remember that the cheapest price shouldn’t be your point of purchase as this may mean a lack in quality. If you come across an advertisement that seems too good to be true, chances are it is.
The common features to look for when purchasing proxies online are:
- Make sure that HTTP, HTTPS, and SSL are all supported.
- Speed is a crucial factor in selecting proxies. Our company offers 1 Gbps so you no longer stare at a loading screen.
- Unlimited bandwidth is as important as the speed. To avoid limiting your company, select a company that offers unlimited bandwidth with no strings attached.
- Using the same proxies over and over again can get you noticed. Make sure your proxies are being replaced every month or so to stay private and effective.
- As mentioned earlier, geographic location is important to search engine rankings. Many companies only offer the option of location from where they are based. We offer locations choices from the USA, Germany, Brazil, and South Africa.
- The main reason you may want a private proxy is to keep your information safe from preying eyes. A company that offers username and password authentication helps to do just that.
- What’s the point of purchasing proxies if the applications you want to use aren’t supported? Ensure your SEO company doesn’t limit which websites and applications the proxies are accessible in.
- Ensure your SEO company offers your business continued support. Maintaining proxies can be a tricky task and many people fail because of the lack of knowledge and experience. Find a company with a great track record to be sure they get the job done correctly.