My host is in Germany, CF IP in the US, hurts my SEO

When I moved to CF last Friday, I got a drop of 60% in organic traffic. I spent the whole week trying to understand why when I finally stumbled upon a link from Google Search Console

It appears that the time to download a page tripled which resulted in a decrease of pages crawled and general ranking.

When I dag more into the issue, I found out that Google usually crawls your site depending on when your site is if it’s in Europe, then European servers, if in the US then US servers, etc…

The problem that Cloudflare creates is that it gives a fake/wrong IP to Google bots. It tells them it’s in the US, so Google crawls from the US which adds a huge chunk to TTFB which impacts drastically my SEO.

Can we tell Cloudflare that we want a European/Middle-eastern IP? My market is in the middle east, so…
Let me hear your thoughts.

Sorry, but they’re all pretty much the same. But I found a post from @eva2000 that addresses this issue:

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I disagree with that statement.
At least the data disagrees with it.
Higher Page download time means less pages crawled
Quoting John Muller

That’s specific to your site & server, the time it takes on average to fetch a page from there (it’s not the same as browser-based speed such as from Pagespeed Insights). FWIW 400-600ms/page seems somewhat high, and possibly results in us crawling less than we’d like to crawl.

In addition to that, there is almost 100% correlation between the fewer pages crawled, High download time and Less traffic

All these correlations, I think we have a causality which is Cloudflare.

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another quote from John Muller Enhancing TTFB: Google penalized my website after starting to use CF

Found one article at https://www.seroundtable.com/google-search-console-crawl-stats-for-time-spent-downloading-a-page-21240.html

John Mueller said it has nothing to do with how long the page takes to render, but rather a simple HTTP request time. Basically, how long it takes GoogleBot to complete the HTTP request.

John wrote, “that’s just time to complete a HTTP request, nothing related to rendering the page itself.”

So this does not measure page speed at all.

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@eva2000 Exactly, and CF increases that time to make the HTTP request for the Geo reasons I stated above.
It’s not about the page speed from a UX perspective (With all the JS and CSS), it’s about the speed, the page responds to the bot. The higher the TTFB, the less pages the bot will crawl because there is a fixed crawling budget per site.
CF is “unwillingly” penalizing content pages not located in the US by making the site appear to be in the US

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