The debate over whether or not Google Sandbox actually exists is still ongoing, but many people agree that whether because of the Sandbox or simply Google’s complex algorithm new web sites are placed in a “probation” period and kept lower than expected in search results. According to web experts, Google Sandbox “is an alleged filter placed on new websites. The result is that a site does not receive good rankings for its most important keywords and keyword phrases.”
Why would Google place such a probation on new sites? The current theory is that Google is trying to prevent spam sites from ranking highly from their launch date because of purchased links. “Another possibility is spam sites would use various tactics to rise to the top of the search results, and gain heavy sales prior to being banned for being in violation of Google’s Terms of Service; and then repeating the process continually.”
The Google Sandbox effect was first noticed in March of 2004. Since the creation of search engines and the complex algorithms they use to rank sites, many website owners and web development professionals have been trying various processes and techniques to help their site rank higher through search engine optimization. Good optimization practices include useful web content, strong keywords, and relevant links. Although any new site can be placed in the Sandbox, it seems that new websites with competitive keywords spend a longer amount of time in the quicksand trap of Google Sandbox.
The average stay in the Sandbox is about three months, but some sites are filtered as long as six months. After a while, the filter dampening your ability to show up in search results wears off and you are allowed on the playground with the rest of the websites. If you think your website might be in the Sandbox, check the ranking in a different search engine. The Sandbox is a phenomenon found only on Google so if you find that you are ranking highly in other search engines, there is a chance you have received the penalty of Google’s Sandbox.
Do you agree or disagree? Perhaps, I missed something? Either way, I would just love to hear what your thoughts are on this topic… just let me know your alive!