48. What is Google Sandbox?

The Google Sandbox Effect is a concept used to explain why newly-registered domains and websites rank poorly in Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPS) for a period of time. In other words new websites are put into a "sandbox" or a holding area and have their search ratings on hold until they can prove worthy of ranking.

Let’s say you start a new business and build a very nice website designed by a top website design company. Now you want your website pages to rank on google search and realise that SEO is key to achieving this goal. For this you contract internet marketing agencies and initiate the process of on-page search engine optimisation which is to be followed by off page search engine optimisation (SEO). The latter helps build links to your website from the web thus creating opportunities for people around the web to find you. These links are called inbound links and are considered very important for ranking on search engines for a select set of keywords (know more about relevant SEO keywords).

Understanding the number of people vying for top positions and implementing seo tactics and given that many are known to use unethical (black hat) techniques, Google has taken steps to ensure credibility of websites which get ranked and displayed as part of your search results. Inbound links which may normally be weighed by Google's ranking algorithm may be subjected to filtering to prevent their full impact. An integral part of this strategy is commonly known as Google Sandbox.

The sandbox is one of the key reasons why websites can take up to 6 months to rank. Check how you can prevent your website from the sandbox effect.