Not everyone agrees, but the Google Sandbox does exist. Any seasoned SEO professional will have noticed that a brand new domain is not going to respond to optimization efforts as quickly as one that’s at least six months old. I’m not going to get into that debate here.
The Google Sandbox is an algorithm filter that appeared about March 2004. Your site may be indexed within a few weeks of submission, however, it likely won’t rank for any keyterms for several months. This waiting period is what SEOs refer to as the sandbox.
Google is protecting the interests of established sites with quality content and backlinks. If any upstart website could topple the content kings in any given month the Internet would be a very volatile place indeed
Google loves sites where fresh, relevant content is added on a consistent basis. A new domain/site has no track record for content development. Google also takes ‘votes’ from other sites, by way of one-way links, into strong consideration. A new site is unlikely to have very many legitimate back link votes within a month or two of launch.
With a new site there are a few shortcuts. While developing a client site, providing budget permits, we create and place five to ten pages of quality content on the site. We want to show the search engines that your site is about quality from the start. We believe that the design of your site should be a secondary concern and that design can always be tweaked later on. Google wants to know about what you have to offer them in terms of content, so we show them.
We then begin developing backlinks to the five to ten content pages. We write and publish articles about topics related to your business and website. We write articles that will help build backlinks and advertise your site at the same time. The article links will contain anchor text that promotes your keywords and deep link to your original content pages. We then begin distribution of the articles to theme-related websites, blogs and article resources.
It is important to time our submission to Google right after a PageRank update. Planning a time frame for your site’s indexing is important. Updates happen roughly every three months. We plan your site launch and indexing for the time immediately after an update. If we launch in the middle or towards the end of an update, we’ll miss out on any links we have worked on. It will be at least another three months before we can earn some PageRank, so we need to plan your site launch time wisely.
It’s best if Google finds you site by way of a link from a high PR site. We locate a site with a good PR (4, 5 or 6), that doesn’t have many links going out and get them to link to your site. Google will then index your content pages as fast as we can post them. How do we get a high PageRank site with your theme to link to your site? In most cases we must pay them. SEO is advertising and advertising costs money.
Another strategy for getting a top-5 ranking for site launch, and bypassing the sandbox, is to buy a mature domain that’s indexed well. We Google your keywords to locate a website with a great name, quality backlinks and good PR. We then look into the site’s monetization and projected conversion. If the site’s not making much money for the owner chances are they’ll be very open to a reasonable offer for their domain. Where possible, we develop the new content with the same URLs as the previous site to capitalize on the past owner’s hard work.