Judging by conversations I’ve been having with other SEOs (including some VERY experienced ones with a lot of data to review) in the last couple of days and the experiences of members inside my private SEO training program at SEO Traffic Hacks, it now looks like there is a new kind of new 30-dayish links sandbox for new sites and new pages on old sites. Curiously – and we’re testing a lot of things now – Google runs the risk of not showing genuinely viral new content in different industries (not just compelling stories about Kim Kardashian’s new haircut or shoes) in the SERPs and that could seriously damage the perceived quality of their search results – that’s something they do give a damn about, to a certain extent.
So how does this new 30-day links sandbox work exactly?
Well, in my test sites, say in a batch of 5 or new 10 domains to see which one/s is the Google darling to build out a whole site on, none of them can get past Page 2. They reach Page 2 and then get stuck. Penetrating Page 1 within 24-72 hours with such sites used to be pretty straightforward before Panda 4/Payday but this new (probably) links filter looks like it’s blocking that outcome now. At least in the short term. The experience of other SEOs that I do respect is that such sites go into a ‘holding pattern’ for roughly 30 days before ranking normally. I’m yet to reach that time lapse period on a load of test sites but I’ll report back on what I see when we get to that point.
How do we as professional SEOs react to this ?
My best advice – but you should follow your own intuition – is: [sociallocker id=”1586″]
1. Don’t give up on SEO.
This type of Google action is normal in the whole SpyVsSpy war between SEOs and Google. Paid traffic isn’t easy (please use retargeting/remarketing if you do – perfectaudience.com works well for me but it’s still expensive to test) and requires serious investment in your expertise (read Malcolm Gladwell’s “Outliers” to see what I mean). And there are of course other traffic generation options apart from SEO and paid traffic, like forum marketing, using JV partners and working with platforms like Udemy or Themeforest, to name a few.
They all have their pros and cons and may/may not suit your target niche. Actually, part of my team is currently doing deep research on a MASSIVE Google alternative that basically nobody is using right now – pretty exciting stuff but I won’t be making any announcements on that for a few months, sorry, until we do a lot more research and testing. If you master that other HUGE untapped traffic source that I mean, you may forget all about Google and it’s nothing to do with paid traffic.
2. Factor the 30-day delay into your SEO program.
I can actually think of a load of far worse anti-SEO changes that Google could have made and if we have to wait an extra 30 days or so, that just means changing [a] our mental timetable of ranking expectations, and [b] changing our clients’ mental timetable of ranking expectation i.e. develop more patience (ironic coming from me!).
3. Focus on the SEO of your existing sites.
This change mainly affects new sites and pages so look at your existing portfolio of sites and improve their rankings instead of worrying about new projects (or work on both at the same time). So far, I’m not seeing new links to old established sites being obviously affected (not yet anyway). If you’re not happy with the rankings on your existing sites, work on the SEO of those while waiting the 30 days or so on new project sites.
4. Work on improving the conversions of your existing sites.
When I build new affiliate sites, I model very closely the style, layout and approach of the established heavyweights in those niches. When I keep close to them, I make more money. When I stray from that, I make less money. The current SERPs are goldmines of conversion optimization info and if you use tools like mixrank.com, whatrunswhere.com and/or semrush.com, you can see exactly what hooks and calls to action the established heavyweights have expensively tested for you. Investing more time in CRO (I need to do this too) will probably yield more money for your online business than more new SEO projects in the short term anyway.
5. Check the SERPs for new Parasite Pages still ranking fine.
Some new Parasites still work but I don’t want to out them here and get them blacklisted by Google. Check the SERPs in your niche, find the Parasite Pages on Page 1 and see when they were created. Then attack your niche with new Parasite Pages using those platforms. Now I know that I haven’t suggested anything incredible or radical above but keeping changes like this one in perspective is really important to keep or maintain your online business progress. Please add your experiences of this new sandbox below – the more info the better! Thanks in advance for sharing. [/sociallocker]
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