The Axandra newsletter archive - 22 March 2005
Welcome to the latest issue of the Search Engine Facts newsletter.

This week, we're trying to find out how long it takes until a web site is listed in Google.

In the news: Ask Jeeves has been bought for $1.9 billion, MSN tests its pay per click service in some markets, Yahoo buys a photo sharing service and more.

Table of contents:

We hope that you enjoy this newsletter and that it helps you to get more out of your web site. Please pass this newsletter on to your friends.

Best regards,
Andre Voget, Johannes Selbach, Axandra CEO

1. Facts of the week: How long does it take to get listed in Google?

In a recent thread in an online forum webmasters discussed the question how long it takes to get listed in Google. A webmaster had submitted a web site with 15 individual pages to Google six months before and he was still not listed in Google although Googlebot visited his web site on a monthly basis.

It's normal Google behavior that a new web site is not listed in the natural (unpaid) search results for about six months. This Google practice is called the Google sandbox .

However, Google did not return any pages of this web site in its search results. Not even for obscure search terms or the company name.

Why was the website of this webmaster not listed in Google?

There were two main factors that prevented the site from showing up in Google's search results:

1. The age of the web site

Once a web site has been put into Google's sandbox, it takes six to eight months until it comes back to the normal index. It's likely that the web site of the webmaster is still in the sandbox.

2. The number and the quality of links to the web site

The webmaster admitted in the discussion that he only had a few links to his website and that these links didn't have high quality. Actually, a link popularity query on Google returned no links at all for that web site.

Yahoo showed only one backlink to the web site and the web site with the backlink was not accessible.

Google will only list a web site in its result pages if other good web sites link to it. If only a few other web sites link to your site and these web sites are of low quality, it will be difficult to make it into Google's search results.

You can find out the link popularity of your web site with this freeware link popularity check tool.

What does this mean to you and your web site?

There are three things you can do to get into Google's index:

1. Make sure that your web site is not in Google's sandbox.

As soon as you have finished your web site, submit it to Google. It takes about six to eight months to get out of Google's sandbox. The sooner you submit your site, the sooner you'll get in Google's normal search results.

2. Get high quality links from related web sites and Internet directories.

It's important that other web sites with similar content link to your site if you want to be listed in Google. A senior member in the discussion said it this way:

"Don't buy links... there's a good chance that they'll turn out to be dodgy in the long-term, and will do you more harm than good.

[...] search for sites that are similar or complimentary to your own, and send them a polite email asking if it would be possible to exchange links. Don't bother doing this unless you think your site is worth linking to.

DMOZ and Yahoo Directory listings are tremendously valuable, even though some might tell you otherwise, (usually because they couldn't get into them)."

An easy way to exchange links that way is our link popularity tool ARELIS.

3. Optimize your web pages.

It is important that your web pages are optimized for Google if you want to get high search engine rankings. Google must be able to find out what your web pages are all about.

A combination of optimized web pages and high link popularity leads to high rankings on Google. Make sure that your web site has both and you'll benefit from high rankings on Google as soon as your web site is out of Google's sandbox.

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2. Search engine news of the week

MSN search ads will compete with Google, Yahoo!

    "Internet search giants Google and Yahoo! no longer have the red-hot search advertising market all to themselves. Microsoft's MSN has introduced its answer to Google and Yahoo!'s pay-per-click text ad programs, called MSN AdCenter. [...] MSN AdCenter will begin testing in two markets -- France and Singapore."

Diller's firm buying Ask Jeeves for $1.9B
    "Barry Diller's electronic commerce company IAC/InterActiveCorp is buying online search engine Ask Jeeves Inc. for $1.9 billion and taking aim at the Internet's advertising market leaders.

    The deal announced Monday represents Diller's bet that he can transform a second-tier search engine into a more formidable threat to industry leaders Google Inc. and Yahoo Inc., much like he built the once-irrelevant Fox television network into a major media player in the late 1980s and early 1990s."

Yahoo buying photo-sharing service Flickr

    "The startup, Flickr Inc., lets people upload digital photos from computers and camera phones, publish photos in their blogs, share digital photo albums with anyone else who uses the service and alert other users whenever they upload a new photo or album." In a similar move, HP plans to acquire online photo services startup Snapfish.

MSN tests shopping search engine

"Microsoft's MSN Shopping team is quietly beta testing a shopping search site, the company confirmed on Friday. The new product--which focuses on price comparison and customer ratings--will face competition from increasingly popular shopping search engines."

Search engine newslets

3. Articles of the week

When keywords don't deliver

    "If you’ve been working with keyword optimization for a while, you know there are times when some great keywords drive tons of traffic to your site, but the resulting conversion rate is terrible."

Local Search: Convert and win

    "If you operate a classic Yellow Pages-oriented business, build a Web site, even if it's just a single page, and experiment with local search advertising. It's still very affordable, and you may find more prospects than you expect replaced their use of the Yellow Pages with that of search engines."

Search, the next generation

    "A rash of specialized search engines may actually boost Google and Yahoo in the short term. But in the long run, it's another story."

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4. Recommended resources

"I am blown away by that jewel of a program"

"WOW! As a passionate user of previous IBP versions I was doubtful whether you could outdo yourselves. In fact I was a bit leery about 'testing' the Beta Version as my previous experience doing so with other programs was less than satisfying.

KUDOS! on a top-notch program. I especially like the Link Popularity
Improver. I am blown away by that jewel of a program. Once again the bar has been raised. Thanks for putting everything I need to market my websites in one v-e-r-y easy to use package."
Chuck Lunsford,


Lower your advertising costs and make more profit

    If your AdWords pay per click campaigns don't return a positive return on investment (ROI) or if you're paying too much for your PPC ads, take a look at our new Google AdWords eBook.

    Find out how to lower your advertising costs while increasing your profit.

Want to be mentioned in this newsletter?

    Just send us some words about your successes with IBP or ARELIS and you might get featured in this newsletter along with your web site address.

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5. IBP 8 beta version 4 is available

We invite you to participate in a public beta test of IBP 8. The new IBP version is twice as powerful as the old IBP 4 version, that's why we called it IBP 8.

This is new:

  • Link Popularity Improver
  • Web Site Optimization Editor
  • Scheduler to automate ranking checks and submissions
  • Keyword Editor with special Google AdWords support
  • Pay Per Click Search Engine Manager
  • enhanced project management: one project for all tools
  • you can work on multiple projects at once
  • better report customization
  • complete new user interface to support the new features
  • click here to see a complete list of all improvements

IBP 4 users: The new IBP 8 uses a new project concept, but it will try to import your IBP 4 projects automatically. Your IBP 4 installation will not be touched.

Note that this is a pre-release public beta test designed to help finding problems in the new version before release. Use it only for testing the new version. Test it now!

Get the new version for free!

Of course, the new IBP version will also offer improvements in the Search Engine Submitter, the Ranking Checker and much more.

The next IBP version will be a free update to all current IBP users. It will be released this quarter. If you buy IBP now, you'll get the new version with many more features for free.

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6. Previous articles

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