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Google Sandbox – How to Avoid the Dreaded Sandbox Trap

Get Out Of Google SandboxSo you think you are stuck in the infamous “Google Sandbox?” Do you even believe in the Google Sandbox? If it exists, what the hell is the Google Sandbox and how the hell can you get out of it?

Well, before we show you how to get out of the Sandbox, let’s quantify what the alleged Sandbox actually is. Google looks at new sites with suspicion. Not because you have done anything wrong, but there is a lot of people out there trying to scam the search engines using techniques that are “unethical” and try to manipulate the ranking and results.

So, when you launch a new site, it is compared against a wide range of “Spam Site” filters and compared with a wide matrix of red-flags to see if there is anything that may be wrong with your website.

Now, with a new site, it is often the case that they are usually indexed within a few days of being submitted, but it stays in a virtual limbo for rankings until it proves itself as a valid website. This can be like a quagmire for many sites trying to compete.

It was because of this that I developed this nice little trick to launch my own sites, as well as my clients sites, to bypass these restrictions. This is one of my most closely guarded secrets and has proven to really help me accelerate my new site rankings and power my way up the search engine rankings using my other techniques.

 Now, here is the other thing. Google will not even confirm the existence of a Sandbox which has led to a lot of debate with SEO pros and gurus all over the world. My own personal opinion is that their has to be some measure of “checks” against new sites as Google’s entire focus is on quality of results returned.

While, I don’t subscribe to the “black hole” aspect of the theories, I do see a lot of evidence regarding the speed of ranking and initial indexing of new sites that would support the launch-filtering of new sites. The other thing is that, because Google does not want to show it’s cards in regards to the Google Sandbox, they won’t even tell you that you are in it. As you can imagine, this is a royal pain in the backside for people launching new sites.

So What Can We Do?

Well, this trick is nothing overly sneaky, but it uses some savvy knowledge of how Google looks at new domains versus old domains and you can leverage old domains status with Google. This has worked flawlessly with many of my new site launches and has proven time and time again you can bypass these restrictive filters and get a great head start on your search engine marketing. The basic principal is that Google will never sandbox a new domain that originates from an old site that has been lifted out of the Sandbox already as it sees the new domain as connected. So, if you have an old website that is regularly visited by Google, you can apply this trick immediately for your new website.

Let’s Bust Out of the Google Sandbox

Here are the basic steps, if you don’t know how to do these steps, speak to a webmaster or your host will help you set this up or point you in the right direction (it’s pretty easy.)

Step 1 – Create a subdomain on an Existing domain that is visited regularly (EG http://development.yourdomain.com)
Step 2 – Replicate your old sites homepage on that subdomain
Step 3 – Link to it from the home page or from another regularly visited page to make sure it is indexed 
Step 4 – Wait until it is indexed then place this 301 redirect code in the folder of the subdomain in a file called .htaccess

Options +FollowSymLinks
RewriteEngine on

# Change the following line to the folder you are
# actually in and make sure you have the trailing slash
Rewritebase /development/
RewriteRule (.*) http://www.newdomain.com/$1 [R=301,L]

This code tells Google that this subdomain now has it’s own “valid” independent domain, which is your new website and it is already indexed in Google.

The 301 is a “Moved Permanently” and “Remove This Link” from their index. The net effect of this is that Google just thinks that this subdomain has now moved over to it’s final destination and updates it’s index accordingly. The credibility and association with your old site has passed over to your new domain and Google just carries on as normal.

Congratulations, no more sandbox! Now this is something I have used over 30-40 times now and it has worked flawlessly. However, if Google changes the way it looks at new sites completely this may change. So next time you are launching a new site. Consider this as a smart way to get your site moving quickly and give it a shot!

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About Sean Donahoe

Sean is one of the most recognized industry leaders in business and marketing. As a popular speaker, author, consultant he has helped over 50,000 students world wide find success in their businesses and has consulted with Fortune 500 companies and businesses of every size grow and thrive...

One comment

  1. Thanks for this post Sean. I’ve few questions though and I am confused.
    When you say “Create a subdomain on an Existing domain “, what is existing domain?
    Is that our new money site or it’s some other old domain?

    Then you say “Replicate your old sites homepage”. I am confused on what’s our “old site”.

    Any help would be appreciated.

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