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Thread: sandbox proof based on my definition

  1. #1
    Senior Member Kyle's Avatar
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    sandbox proof based on my definition

    I will defend the sandbox effect to my death based on my definition. I get offended when people who I know do not develop, or interact with numerous new sites on a regular basis instantly saying the sandbox is false. In other words, I am annoyed with people who may maintain one or two big sites instead of involved with new sites being launched regularly to get a good idea of the latest effects Google has placed on newly established sites. Keep in mind... I am all for maintaining fewer large sites than creating smaller insignificant sites regularly. However I interact with many different webmasters who create small sites regularly, consulting them and having complete access and understanding of their link building methods.

    My definition of the sandbox is a delay with a NEW site ranking on the primary term being targetted from the anchor text from external incoming links. What is weird is, if your site has a unique name that doesn't appear regularly on other sites (ex: something brandable like "Hoppity Woppity.com"), then this "sandbox" effect does not happen.

    This "sandbox effect" likely happens due to ONE or ALL of the following...

    - Google delaying the benefit of a link. As always the more incoming links you have, the less time it will take to rank.

    - Other than the pagerank value of the incoming link always being important (importance may have been changing over the years, this thread is not a debate on pagerank), how topic-related the link is MAY have effect on the sandbox effect.

    - As I already mentioned, the term you are targetting. It would be very easy for the google algo to know the difference between a unique site name and a name based on a competitive term. This is why a site with a unique name does not experience the sandbox when ranking on the two keywords making up their unique name.

    My proof?

    I have had controlled experiments with friends MFA sites.

    Example 1: www.socialanxietydisorder.net. It took 9 months for this site to rank on Google for 'social anxiety disorder'. ALL of the incoming links were obtained in the first 2 months since launching. It was not a gradual increase in the rankings. 9 months after the site launched, it suddenly appeared in the top 20 on Google. THEN it has slowly increased in rankings like a normal site since that 9 month mark.

    Example 2: www.anxietyinsight.com - Same difference, but only took 7 months to rank on 'agoraphobia'.

    Example 3: www.dust-mites.org - Not in the top 1000 results on Google for 6 months. All incoming links were established early on, and no additional ones have been obtained. This site always received traffic from day 1 on obscure random terms related to mites.. even terms that included 'dust mites'. It would receive traffic on obscure terms like "bed dust mites". But when searching on 'dust mites', it wouldnt be in the top 1000. As of the past month (recently), it has been jumping around the top 100. At the time of this post, ranked 101.

    Example 4: www.insectidentification.org - Obtained a DMOZ listing almost immediately after launching with the anchor text Insect Identification (among many other links). Took over 6 months to rank in the top 100 on the term 'insect identification'. Then normal, gradual increases in rank happened, now it is #1.

    Out of all these sites, insect identification is my best example. It is not an MFA site, and it is not targetting some hugely competitive term. I realize DMOZ isn't everything, so please don't bash me saying "DMOZ links aren't gold stop placing so much emphasis on that." BUT, a DMOZ listing should at least put you in the top 500 on Google fairly quickly for the not so competitive term 'insect identification', shouldn't it? It took 6 months for www.insectidentification.org to crack the top 100 on a not so competitive term. Then it just decided to jump to #1 quickly once it cracked the top 100.

    I consider myself a very logical and experienced web developer. I think those who I interact with regularly here would acknowledge my experience. I do not believe in any of the garbage that comes out of WMW.. from the -950 theory, to the "pray to google 7 times a day to increase your rankings" theory. However, wherever the term 'sandbox' came from, I believe the originator of this theory is on to something. Especially when this theory can be tested.
    Kyle

  2. #2
    Senior Member Kyle's Avatar
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    The simplified point is..

    There is definitely some delay that exists related to new sites. And this delay did not exist pre-2003 (approximately).

    That is what the sandbox is. The details can be debated, but there is something. And ever since the term was first coined, it has always referred to a delay in ranking for new sites.

    sandbox ====== delay

    Details ===== debatable
    Kyle

  3. #3
    Trench Warfare
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    Well said Kyle. I believe the age of the links is the crucial factor.

  4. #4
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    Nice post kyle, im in the process of creating a bunch of new sites, so its good to get a realistic timeframe, when ranking in google.

    Did you manage to measure the effect of incoming pagerank, regards to time?

  5. #5
    Registered Mike's Avatar
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    I'm not too sure...

    I recently launched a new site, got links and within weeks I was ranking for terms. It has to be said I was going for a lot of terms for my subpages, not just one big one for my homepage.
    Don't you just love free internet games ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    I'm not too sure...

    I recently launched a new site, got links and within weeks I was ranking for terms. It has to be said I was going for a lot of terms for my subpages, not just one big one for my homepage.
    Yes...that's very true...
    Try to get as many backlink for innerpages also as you do for your home page;

  7. #7
    Administrator Chris's Avatar
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    I've experience similar things. However I don't think we fully understand the system, especially since Google reps have said that there is no sandbox as per the initial definition and instead what we sometimes see is a perfect storm of filters and other systems that can create a sandbox like effect.
    Chris Beasley - My Guide to Building a Successful Website[size=1]
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Kyle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZigE View Post
    Nice post kyle, im in the process of creating a bunch of new sites, so its good to get a realistic timeframe, when ranking in google.

    Did you manage to measure the effect of incoming pagerank, regards to time?
    Ever since the Google dances were no longer a part of their system, Google reps have even said that pagerank calculations are supposed to be near instant.

    They crawl an incoming link to your site, you get the pagerank.

    The system that is in place is complicated, and I have no desire to figure it out. I only posted this thread to let people know that there is a delay... that is all I'm sure of.

    This delay is just another example of how and where you should spend your time. Spend it on your business.. KNOW that you are writing good content. Don't worry about search engines, worry about your content and getting links from sites that respect and find your content interesting.

    Realize that the fundamentals of SEO have not changed much, and the challenge is in your content writing, making it more unique and interesting than the competing site.
    Kyle

  9. #9
    Senior Member Kyle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris View Post
    I've experience similar things. However I don't think we fully understand the system, especially since Google reps have said that there is no sandbox as per the initial definition and instead what we sometimes see is a perfect storm of filters and other systems that can create a sandbox like effect.
    We definitely don't understand the system... nor will we. Chances are the system will change even more by the time we are close to understanding it. Experimentation, as I mentioned as a blog comment, is really going out the window compared to how it used to be.

    All that's important is using the same fundamental seo techniques that haven't really changed over the years.
    Kyle

  10. #10
    Registered Billyray's Avatar
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    I recently registered a domain and put up a basic page and some how the goog bot came along and had a sniff.

    The weird thing is there are no links to it and I haven't submitted it anywhere. The only thing I can see is that I may have looked up the domain history to see if it had been registered before.

    Anyways it was ranked number 9 for a about a week and then nothing. The domain name is somethingcalculator dot com. Weird stuff.

  11. #11
    Site Contributor KLB's Avatar
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    I have a perfect site to run an experiment on. It has been live for over a year, but I haven't done anything beyond get its skin up. It has maybe two links to it and only has a PR1.

    The site's domain is RemoteComputerNetworking.com (Please don't link to it yet). My plan was to work with my brother create a resource dealing with building and maintaining computer networks under the most extreme and remote conditions on earth. The problem is my brother shipped off to Armenia with the Peace Corps to, build computer networks in an extremely impoverished country with whatever scraps of hardware he could scrounge up on almost zero budget (I already sent him most of my bone yard). Simply put he is the computing world's equivalent of Macgyver.

    So basically the site isn't getting very far because the chief brain on this topic is off in some extremely remote destination gaining great experience for the mission of the site.

    This site is perfect because it is indexed by Google and has aged past the "sandbox" effect cut off everyone seems to believe in, but essentially there is nothing to the site that would have helped it build up all the characteristics that sites traditionally build up. If and when I can finally start to get original articles for the site we'll be able to see how long it takes to get traction in the SERPs.
    Ken Barbalace - EnvironmentalChemistry.com (Environmental Careers, Blog)
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by KLB View Post
    I have a perfect site to run an experiment on. It has been live for over a year, but I haven't done anything beyond get its skin up. It has maybe two links to it and only has a PR1.

    The site's domain is RemoteComputerNetworking.com (Please don't link to it yet). My plan was to work with my brother create a resource dealing with building and maintaining computer networks under the most extreme and remote conditions on earth. The problem is my brother shipped off to Armenia with the Peace Corps to, build computer networks in an extremely impoverished country with whatever scraps of hardware he could scrounge up on almost zero budget (I already sent him most of my bone yard). Simply put he is the computing world's equivalent of Macgyver.

    So basically the site isn't getting very far because the chief brain on this topic is off in some extremely remote destination gaining great experience for the mission of the site.

    This site is perfect because it is indexed by Google and has aged past the "sandbox" effect cut off everyone seems to believe in, but essentially there is nothing to the site that would have helped it build up all the characteristics that sites traditionally build up. If and when I can finally start to get original articles for the site we'll be able to see how long it takes to get traction in the SERPs.

    IMHO you can't "Test" with one site. Since we don't know exactly how the system/delay/"sandbox trigger" works we can't test one site and come to any conclusion. I think it's pretty clear some sites get penalized or "reviewed" by googles "special sandbox system" while others make it through and are in the clear.

  13. #13
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    BillyRay thats a temp listing. its normal.. it only last for a week or so...

  14. #14
    Site Contributor KLB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToddW View Post
    IMHO you can't "Test" with one site. Since we don't know exactly how the system/delay/"sandbox trigger" works we can't test one site and come to any conclusion. I think it's pretty clear some sites get penalized or "reviewed" by googles "special sandbox system" while others make it through and are in the clear.
    No you can't but I do have another site like the one mentioned above that was set up but never pursued. I also have some domains that have been registered for well over a year, but never developed beyond being parked at Sedo.

    The favored "cause" of the "sandbox effect" is BS. There is no evidence of a causation relationship between the age of a site and it being "penalized" in the SERPs. At most there is a correlation and correlation does not mean causation. It isn't the responsibility of people like me to disprove the causation.

    It is the responsibility of those want to perpetuate this conspiracy theory to provide evidence that supports the claim of causation AND to show evidence that exonerates other potential causes of the "penalty".

    In other words it isn't the responsibility of the skeptics to disprove this myth (one can not disprove a conspiracy theory) it is the responsibility of the "believers" to provide verifiable evidence of causation.

    People REALLY need to read Chris' latest SEO blog about scientific principles.

    For those who want to continue to believe in things like th sandbox effect, go ahead and be a self-defeatist. The rest of us can move forward and become more successful by listening to the wisdom of people like Chris who actually apply scientific principles to their research.

    By believing in unsubstantiated beliefs like the causation of a domain's age being a penalty factor in search algorithms all you are doing is hurting yourself thereby being less of a competitive threat to the rest of us.
    Ken Barbalace - EnvironmentalChemistry.com (Environmental Careers, Blog)
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    Google has a patent on information retrieval based on historical data. It is hard to say what they use and what they don't.

    My theory is that when google first discovers a page, it assigns it a PR based on the PR of the domain. That allows established domains to rank immediately with "fresh" content.

    Then, google comes along and calculates the "real" ranking a few days to a week later. At that point, the page lives on its own.

    The secret sauce that I think alot of people miss is the click data that google collects from the SERPS page. I think google will put weight on this data, if it has it. A surprising amount of weight, I think. This keeps the top of the SERPs more stable. If google is showing a result for a search and nobody is clicking on it, google can see its obviously not relevant for that term and weight it down. On the other hand, If a marginal page gets better than average click through, google can boost it.

    The interesting thing happens when an established domain name gets ranked high in the SERPS for a term due to "freshness," but happens to get very good click through. Google will keep the term in the SERPS despite the lack of other SEO factors, like incoming links. To outside observers it looks like the page ranks because it is from a "trusted domain." That is only partially true. Being from a trusted domain got it ranked during the "freshness" period. Getting clicked on keeps it there.

    Of course, new domains miss out on the freshness opportunity and click data. They have to fight their way up from the bottom, while established domains have the opportunity to start at the top.

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