Posted 21 August 2004 - 12:38 PM
I think I should put something up here with regard the 'sandbox' thing. It is generally agreed that it is NOT sites that get sandboxed, it is links, and not the whole element of links, rather it is split.
There are two parts of the Google algo that relate to a link.
1) The page rank element.
2) The anchor text element.
It is not the page rank element that is sandboxed, it is the second element, the anchor text element. And, as we know that page rank is now hardly anything more than a toy, or a tie break for duplicate content, we can assume that Google is waging war on throw away domains, and anchor text abuse (at least short term).
It seems that Google feel any site that has a lot of links with a lot of the same anchor text within those links is trying it on. It then applies the sand box thing to those links only. NOT all links, and not the whole site. I have been playing with this on one of my own sites that ranks #1 for loads of phrases, and I have been working on traditional link building for a couple of different phrases as the market moved.
I though this would be an ideal opportunity to test out the sandbox theory on. I went to a couple of sites I own, and added a load of backlinks cross site with the same 5 word anchor text.
Sure enough, within a couple of days the site shot into the top 100, then 80, then 60, then GONE, right out, no where! (I guess this is the point when the filter was applied) The other phrases that are being built the traditional single link across many sites however have continued to climb, completely unaffected by the sandbox effect. Three of the 8 new phrases are now top 10, so it is clear that the sandbox filter is not applied to sites, but applied to link abuse (or assumed link abuse), and only then on the anchor text portion, with the PR portion being allowed to transfer.
I am still not happy with the phrase 'the site is in the sandbox' and I am sure Brian will be able to add to my stuff here, as he deals way more in the link side of things than I do, especially bulk linking with optimised anchor content.