Saturday, 4 February 2012

ranked sites and sites that update content frequently (like news and blog sites) get crawled daily

If interested, you can check your server log files for the user-agent “Googlebot”. This
will tell you when Google crawls your site. You can also check by IP address
although this method is not as accurate as Google uses different IP addresses for
their robots, which can change over time.

Google updates its main index more or less continuously although major “updates”
still happen several times a year. These major updates correspond to major ranking
algorithm changes. These updates have all been named – you may have heard
about Florida, Bourbon, Allegra or Jagger in the forums.

 For new websites, I advise you to make your site live as quickly as possible, even
before you are completed. Given that Google prefers sites that are older, it no longer
makes sense to wait until every "i" is dotted and "t" is crossed before going live with
a new site. Instead, create an overall skeleton of your site, with a reasonably finished
Home page and other important pages and make it live. Add new content, or update
the content, on at least a monthly basis. Google also prefers sites that add or update
content regularly.

This strategy has to do with what is called the Google Sandbox or the aging factor.
The Sandbox is a set of filters applied to new websites whereby the site cannot rank
well (or at all) for any competitive keywords for 6 – 24 months. Also called the aging
delay. New sites can rank well for very niche, unique keyword phrases, such as their
company name, but that’s about it. It is for this reason that new sites need to be
made live on the Web as soon as possible in order to “start the aging clock”.

Important: It is critical that your website is up and running when Google visits you
by following a link from another site. If your site is down, your listing on Google may
disappear until the next update! The reason is that Google thinks your site doesn’t
exist and may remove it from the index after a couple of attempts.

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