It wasn’t until I started blogging that I read about “Google’s Sandbox”.
Apparently, the terminology was given to some blogs that may be on a “probationary period” with Google. These are blogs that Google is “watching” to see how internet users react to them. Google may be looking to see if they are being visited, or linked to. Until they “see” these blogs are actually legitimate, Google may place them on what could be called a “time out” in cyberspace, or “placed in the sandbox”.
On ThreadWatch.org, an article was posted that discusses the Google “sandbox” phenomenon.
Although some dispute the existence of a Google sandbox, I wouldn’t be surprised if this blog was in the infamous sandbox.
How did I come to that conclusion?
In the past, the majority of my traffic came from referrals.
Even though I tried to use keywords and keyword density, only a very small percentage of my traffic was coming from search engines.
However, recently, I have seen a surge of search engine traffic.
When reading about the Google sandbox “conditions”, it says that a blog may be placed in the sandbox for six months to a year. I began to see the search engine traffic increase around month nine.
When I think back to what I had done:
1) I think of my “blogging buddies” page (which is under re-construction). I had created the page and it was a list of links to websites or blogs that had commented on, or had linked to either of my two blogs. I still wonder if that could have been construed as a “link farm”, even though there was only 28 links.
2) WordPress is notorious for “duplicate content”. When you post and place your posts into your categories, archives, etc…the same post is located on many areas of your blog. To correct that, I began using excerpted posts. This may not make a difference, as I haven’t the same problems with my Observation Mountain,com (OM) WordPress blog.
3) The name of my blog – Blogging Without A Blog, and it’s subtitle, plus the meta tags, include the word “blog”, many times. Google may have seen that as me trying to “spam” the word “blog”.
4) Both of my blogs hit cyberspace within days of each other….coming from the same IP address. Ironically, my OM blog was the first to publish. From the beginning, I have had search engine traffic on the OM blog.
Although the “Google sandbox” theory is disputed, based on my experience, I believe it may exist.
Would it be so bad if there was a sandbox, of sorts? I don’t think so.
If hundreds of thousands of blogs are started each day, guaranteed, they are not all worth reading. A high percentage of them may be very spammy, and not provide good content. If a spammy blog is started and doesn’t get traffic, chances are, the blog will be abandoned or discontinued.
With that being said, who, in there right mind, would continue maintaining a blog for 6-12 months, if they get low traffic counts?
Only those who believe in themselves. Only those who can continue to provide quality content for their readers. And….,only those who have loyal readers and commenters who inspire them to go on.
Hey, that sounds like me 😀
Have you ever heard of the Google sandbox phenomenon?
Do you think you have ever been in the sandbox?
If there is a sandbox, do you think it’s a good idea?