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Google reply acknowleges penalizing sites
This seems to me a yes/no answer
sonic10




msg:48846
 8:29 pm on Oct 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

After emailing google and directly asking if there is a dampening filter / sandboxing of new domains being applied to sites with competitive search terms to force new domains to use adwords for a few months.

Google Reply:
While we're happy to provide you with tips on maintaining a 'Google-friendly' site, we don't
personally review individual sites, nor do we comment on the details of our search technology beyond what appears on our site.

So it appears to be fact that such a filter does exist. Otherwise they would have simply said:
No we do not apply any special filters or penalties to new or old websites regardless of keywords.

You will also notice that googleguy will never post in a thread regarding the 'sandbox effect' on this forum or any other, user groups etc. because it does exist.

Does anyone read this reply differently?

 

DerekH




msg:48847
 7:31 am on Nov 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

Does anyone read this differently?
I certainly do.

Google said that they don't comment, and I don't regard that statement as agreeing or disagreeing with your assertion that there's a filter. I regard it as making no comment.

Sorry - but I really think you're kidding yourself if you believe otherwise.
DerekH

Powdork




msg:48848
 7:49 am on Nov 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

Whilst I am a firm believer the sandbox does exist and is well known by GoogleGuy, and their engineers, I don't believe it is intentional. I personally think they would do anything to be able to get rid of it, even crawl sites at the rate of 150+ pages/second. One sentence stands out in the original post
So it appears to be fact that such a filter does exist.

DotBum




msg:48849
 3:37 pm on Nov 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

I think Derek is spot on, you received the template Google response.

You're taking the facts and reaching conclusions you want to reach, instead of the conclusion that the facts state (or in this case don't state).

I've been in exactly the same situation with a google template email, firstly stretching what the mail that google sent me to match my own diagnosis before I had some time to cool off and reassess.

HTH
DB

Tech2004




msg:48850
 7:24 am on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

I have been Emailing Google about some of my sites pages disappearing from the index since about July. They sure word things nice, but give no technical details or assistance on how to solve the problem other than to check the HTML. They said my particular problem 'may' be a normal reindexing fluxuation....then the 2nd or 3rd time I replied, they seemed to conclude that is what it is more than likely.

I too am paraniod , and for good reason I suppose. When a company reaches 50 million net worth in what? 2 years? The trend is usually to forget the basic things that bought in success, get lazy and complacent. The scene from the Movie 'Tron' where the old guy complains to the exec about user requests comes to mind :)

internetheaven




msg:48851
 8:13 am on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

Whilst I am a firm believer the sandbox does exist ... I don't believe it is intentional.

Try saying that in an "It's not my fault I was dropped, I must have been sandboxed! They're specifically out to get me ..." thread.

There are several things that people are assuming are directly built filters when they are just the product of algorithm changes. I'm not so sure that Google wants to get rid of the "index-lag" effect, it doesn't seem to harm "fresh", "new", "worthy", "natural" pages - just the spammy, underdeveloped, sudden 10,000 links to at once pages.

Marval




msg:48852
 1:21 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

sonic10 - agreed that this is just one of Googles many templated responses - seen it before and there are many more that are written to not give any information other than to aknowledge that they got your email

BillyS




msg:48853
 1:28 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

Google Reply:
While we're happy to provide you with tips on maintaining a 'Google-friendly' site, we don't personally review individual sites, nor do we comment on the details of our search technology beyond what appears on our site.

So it appears to be fact that such a filter does exist. Otherwise they would have simply said:
No we do not apply any special filters or penalties to new or old websites regardless of keywords.

What you are saying is this: Hey, they didn't comment so it must be true. That is a huge leap of faith. You can believe what you want, but it certainly is not a FACT.

Crush




msg:48854
 2:00 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

nah, I have had this one before. Probably sent out by a machine too :)

Lothar




msg:48855
 4:20 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

I agree with PowDork on this one... I don't think the "sandbox" is intentional by any means as it makes no business sense whatsover and does not really deter good SEO spammers from doing what they do best.

Instead, I believe the sandbox is still some type of "glitch" in their system that will be fixed eventually (maybe even before xmas). I think a lot of this "sandbox" theory has something to do with their technical infrastructure and they are probably upgrading their infrastructure to deal with this shortcoming. I'm guessing the release date will co-incide very conveniently with MSN's search release.

All of this is pure speculation though.

wanna_learn




msg:48856
 6:34 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

Is there a need of confirmation from Google for this "New Site Filter" for compititive terms.... when almost all of us are suffering from it for apparently no other reason?

Powdork




msg:48857
 6:54 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

it doesn't seem to harm "fresh", "new", "worthy", "natural" pages - just the spammy, underdeveloped, sudden 10,000 links to at once pages.
Just not true. It affects any pages on a new domain. There are reports of new sites getting past it but they are rare and it doesn't mean they weren't affected. When I decided to switch half my site to a new domain back in June I was aware of the sandbox but wasn't sure if it would apply since it was well indexed content that ranked well and I was using 301's. Iwas prepared however to face the 60-90 day sandbox (that was what it was thought to be at the time since some sites/pages were released in May). It's now been 180 days. Many of the pages it is affecting are no longer "fresh" and "new". They've missed that boat already. They're still "worthy" and "natural" though.
Tech2004




msg:48858
 7:01 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

Well - are we in a filter, or is it merely part of a normal reindexing process as they will claim it is when you Email to them the concern?

I have read other posts about sites disappearing for up to a year, then returning to Google on their own with no one changing the site at all. I dont see how it helps Google when in my case, they remove the pages with the most visits that Google refered either. If there was a 'normal' process of reindexing certain sites, why pick the pages that drew in the most traffic, and omit them when they are doing so well, and promoting Google? There is a lot to build a case against them for picking and choosing pages over other ones because they are drawing in the most traffic. Makes no sense to remove pages that people are actively seeking in the google index does it? Why not at least keep a cached copy since so many users found those pages of interest?

elgrande




msg:48859
 9:26 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

Well - are we in a filter

From what I am experiencing, yes. Either that or a huge penalty with essentially the same effect.

I had originally thought that the way to get around it was to get inbound authority links, but now after getting inbounds from 12 of the 20 top sites for my search term (75% exact anchor text, 25% varied), I still find myself filtered back 100+ spots.

HERE'S THE KEY: What is even more interesting is that none of the top 20 sites (actually none that I can see anywhere in the SERPS) has even a single external inbound link containing this 2-word keyword. Most just have this 2-word keyword in internal anchor text and/ or the page title. From talking with the site owners, they don't even care about this particular phrase.

NOTES: My site ranks #2 in Yahoo and #100-something in Google (it actually fluctuates 20-50 positions each day). The site is 3+ years old, but I received the majority of these authority inbounds a month or two ago and added around 40 good content pages (neither has had any impact on rankings). It's optimized in accordance with Search Engine 101 from Brett's "Successful Site in 12 Months" and has a PR5. The SERPS return millions of results for this term: one of the words is especially competitive, but few people actually optimize for the 2-word combo.

So, this goes back to the (unpopular) OOP filter theory, but it looks more like an OOP penalty to me. There are tons of exceptions -- I am just hoping that this post (especially the "KEY") provides some clues for people experiencing the same sort of situation.

Spine




msg:48860
 5:11 am on Nov 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

And yet there is blatant spam clogging up some results.

It's crummy to have my pages either penalized or lost in a google burp while computer generated doorway pages are taking up 6 places on the 1st page of SERPs.

I can hit refresh a few times and see a couple of my pages come up on page 1 of SERPs for keywords I've vanished for since Sept 23rd.

I can watch the results flip back and forth (like the Google dance) with a few refreshes throughout the day, BUT - the next day instead of the index I'm doing well in rotating into service, google adds some exact clones of sites already appearing in position 1-2, but on a different domain name, and I'm nowhere to be found again (including with refreshing).

It's like a glimpse of an alternate world where I still have hope for Google to come around and restore some of the positions my site held, but the index that shows me on page 1 doing as well as I used to never solidifies. Instead they just add fresh spam.

It feels like a penalty for being "too on topic", but the sites that are on page 1 have NO CONTENT other than links to other sites in their network of spam and affiliate porn links, what good is that to anybody?

the_nerd




msg:48861
 8:40 am on Nov 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

elgrande

HERE'S THE KEY: What is even more interesting is that none of the top 20 sites (actually none that I can see anywhere in the SERPS) has even a single external inbound link containing this 2-word keyword. Most just have this 2-word keyword in internal anchor text and/ or the page title. From talking with the site owners, they don't even care about this particular phrase.

Many #1s really look like they didn't go for this keyword. (maybe they did. but know the ropes?)

I'm not so sure about your "key". Why? If you wanted to get rid of a competitor you could simply feed him a couple of exact anchor-text-links and off he goes.

Jon_King




msg:48862
 12:17 pm on Nov 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

If Google replies:

"nor do we comment on the details of our search technology beyond what appears on our site"

that means:

"So it appears to be fact that such a filter does exist."

The sandbox may exist but there is no clue about it in that email reply. IMHO

tomasz




msg:48863
 3:37 pm on Nov 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

I am convinced it DOES exists.
I recently purchase new domain name so I can establish my name. After purchasing, I transfered my 4 years old site which was ranked very well using 301 redirects.
Now after 3 months, my new site shows PR6 over 2000 my old backlinks and is first in allin* but nowhere to be found in SERPs.

To add more to the twist, new site is loosing pages and the same time old site shows unchanged number, do not have clue what to think and what to do ...

jnmconsulting




msg:48864
 3:45 pm on Nov 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

IMO,

I think google is building a new index, that is why we are seeing all the bot activity.

The SERPS are running off of the old index and have not been moving around much.

That is what I see from my industry. However I think I saw some posts that may go against this opinion...

internetheaven




msg:48865
 1:25 pm on Nov 10, 2004 (gmt 0)

it doesn't seem to harm "fresh", "new", "worthy", "natural" pages - just the spammy, underdeveloped, sudden 10,000 links to at once pages.


Just not true. It affects any pages on a new domain. There are reports of new sites getting past it but they are rare and it doesn't mean they weren't affected.

You realise that you just contradicted yourself? You say its "just not true" and then say "they are rare". I understand that you may be bitter because you didn't get around it but stating that it is "just not true" when you obviously know yourself that it is true, (just rare), is not the way to go feeling better.

As for the comments regarding the sandbox as a 'glitch' that will 'soon be rectified', I doubt it, I think that Google will simply leave it alone until they think of something else that will work better. The lack of freshness is severly less than the huge amounts of spam if they were to do it the other way - the lesser of two evils approach.

Powdork




msg:48866
 3:51 pm on Nov 10, 2004 (gmt 0)

You realise that you just contradicted yourself? You say its "just not true" and then say "they are rare".
That is a not a contradiction. You said "it doesn't seem to harm "fresh", "new", "worthy", "natural" pages". It does affect those pages, but some get through, as do some spammy 10,000 backlink at once pages. In fact, in other threads steveb has suggested that the easy way to beat the sandbox is with a huge volume of low quality backlinks. Personally, I am not willing to do that to my site.
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