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What does "sandboxed" mean?


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I have crossed this term quite a few times when it comes to SEO. Some people say bad SEO or overdoing it can get your site "sandboxed".

 

I have a guess of what it is. Something like penalized by Google, right? But what kind of penalty? Is it permanent if your site is sandboxed?

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Sandboxing can be defined as a penalty by Google whereby a site ranking well earlier disappears from the search results. This could be due to a lot of factors, I suggest you read the terms of Google webmaster tools before you start your SEO and backlinking campaigns. Google usually sandboxes new sites, however if an established site starts using spammy techniques for backlinking then Google may penalize it. The sandbox effect penalty lasts for months and there is little you can do when your site is sandboxed.

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  • 5 months later...

Many SEO experts believe that the term sandbox simply means "not enough incoming links" because getting these seems to be all you need to break out of the sandbox. If you have a social profile with 20,000+ followers that actually look at links you share you can break a sandbox fairly quickly, Google tracks people with web beacons and if they see a lot of people heading to your site they rank it more highly, at least for a little while.

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Seems like most of the above posters do not have the idea about what a sandbox is. Just like the word say, it is some kind of box where you are limited priveleges. Just like you run a program in a sandbox mode.

 

 

When someone starts a new website and does perfect SEO, he or she is able to rank quite fast in the serps. All you have to do is to gain the perfect backlinks. Some of them even blast their websites with tens of thousands of backlinks in a fortnight for their website to rank. But Google does not like it. There is no way a new website shall gain so many backlinks in such a short time. So Google shall place their website in a Sandbox. When that happens, whatever SEO you do, your website is never going to reach the top serps. Its not a penalty, but rather a limitation.

 

It may be anywhere a month to over 6 months, but that shall depend on your website.

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I'd like to think I know what I'm talking about, John, and I was simply offering the most widely used method of attempting  to get out, backlinks. If you show me a site you think is in a sandbox and then watch it for a couple of weeks after it gets a few high PR links from trusted sites I think you'll agree that incoming links are good medicine.

 

Not only are they good medicine but newly launched startups try to leverage their other high PR properties to help stay out of the sandbox in the first place.

 

Matt Cutts once referenced the sandbox as just a feeling you get because of a mix of factors but that it doesn't really exist as part of the algorithm. He suggested that a new site is not yet trusted and so you should work on improving content and telling others about the site. e.g. backlinks.

 

I highly recommend you read this thread

Edited by bigbigfan
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