Is Seattle a good city to host your dedicated server?

seattle photo

Photo by Anupam_ts

The greater Seattle area is not only the home of Microsoft and a large tech community, it’s also a major hub on the internet. With fiber landing points coming in from Japan and other Asian countries, and a huge number of local ISPs, Seattle has become a popular place to host servers in the Northwest. Although IOFLOOD.com provides servers in Phoenix, AZ, we do understand that a different location may be best for you. As part of the process of picking a hosting provider, location can be a large factor, and is a good way to narrow down your choices.

We know how hard it can be to decide where to host your servers, and that’s why today we’re going to go over the pros and cons of hosting your dedicated servers in Seattle.

Pros:

  • Excellent connectivity. Seattle is the most connected Northwest-US city, with all the major internet service providers exchanging traffic in the Westin Building in downtown Seattle. If you need to connect to users in Western Canada, Japan, or the Western US, Seattle can be an excellent option due to its geography and connected ISPs.
  • Relatively inexpensive. Although it’s not the cheapest place to host servers, Seattle does have many of the advantages of Los Angeles or San Jose at a far lower cost. Lower cost electricity, labor, and real estate, combined with a healthy and competitive hosting market, help keep costs down.
  • Local talent can be easier to find. Because Seattle is a high tech city in general, this can make it easier to find the kind of employees who are needed as supporting staff for dedicated hosting providers.

Cons:

  • Among the major US hosting cities, Seattle is a smaller market. Similar to Miami in this respect, this means there can be fewer provider options, many of whom offer less support, particularly during off-hours. Therefore, selecting the right service provider is even more important in Seattle than it is in other cities.
  • “Second tier status”: Without the name recognition of Los Angeles, San Jose, or New York City, “location sensitive” customers may overlook a provider with servers in Seattle, even if, technically speaking, it offers nearly the same advantages as those larger more expensive cities.
  • Low population density. The west coast of the US in general, and the northwest in particular, is not very close to the majority of the US population. This can increase latency for your users, potentially creating a negative user experience. This issue with increased latency is more important for game servers than it is for general website hosting, so this may or may not be important to you.

I know that selecting a hosting provider can be a difficult process, particularly with how important it is to get it right the first time. If you have any questions about dedicated servers in Seattle or any other market, please contact us and we’d be happy to help. We can be reached at sales [at] ioflood.com