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Acquired old domain...steps to circumvent the Sand Box

     
5:27 am on Jul 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I just purchased an old domain in my niche (registered 2002). The site was setup so as all links point to a subdirectory, which also has a DMOZ and Yahoo listing. All the content was pulled off the site 2 years ago, except for a couple of hundred pages of archives tucked away in a different subdirectory. If I do a site: search, I can see these archives and that they were last cached on February of 2005. Here is the strange part: the main subdirectory which has all the links pointed at it, still has PR5 (even after this most recent PR update).

Now the former owner agreed to keep the WHOIS info the same.

Question:What specific steps do I take to maximize my chance of skipping the sandbox?

Can I simply add content to the subdir that has all the links to it and be good to go? OR does the fact that there hasn't been content there for years stiffle any efforts?

1:51 pm on July 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Just a guess, but since it's indexed and been around for years, I don't see how it could go into the Sandbox.
2:03 pm on July 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Well my concern stems from the fact that the ONLY content indexed are some archives in a subdirectory, NOT the index page nor the subdirectory that has all the links pointed at it. And since these pages don't have content, the fact that I will be adding entirely new content is concerning.

My intentions are to put some content up on directory that has all the links, then create more subdirectories and SEO those.

2:17 pm on July 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Your plan sounds good. I'm in a similar position and plan to make changes very slowly for the first 6 months.

By the way, well done getting the previous owner to agree to keep whois details the same!

6:43 pm on July 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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So nobody sees a problem with this site not having any content? I know there are some real SandBox theorists out there. Care to comment?
9:22 pm on July 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Google does strange things some times.
I have a site which had PR4 a year ago, then it got deleted. It had like 100 pages indexed by that time.

I grabbed that domain and parked it, it had been several PR updates since then, and it still having the same PR and google still showing the cache from those 100 pages indexed a year ago!

9:36 pm on July 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Yes, but the question is whether or not if you were to put new content back up would you be sandboxed?
1:06 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I can ONLY give a guess, and this is ONLY a guess, but I don't think by adding content you'll get Sandboxed. You could look at it as changing content at any other site/page and getting SB'd for that which doesn't seem like that would happen. As I understand it, again, as I understand it, SB is for new domains and not content. I've done some massive content changes for pages before, even all pages on an established entire domain and I never got SB'd.
1:27 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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One other thing that you might like to think about is setting up .htaccess (if you're on Apache) to do a 301 direct from the root to that directory that has all the links. That way, you'll get the benefit of any links to the root and all you need to do is change the content in the directoy without having to put new stuff up on the homepage.

There should be no problem whatsoever with simply changing the content (as long as that content abides by Google's guidelines of course).

2:34 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Have seen sites in Google holding top positions vanish after a site redesign. It's the legacy left over from the spammers doing/done "bait&switch".