The Google honeymoon period

So about two months ago started the relaunch of a real estate website that has been on the web since 1998. Just before clearing out ALL content, and starting to add new stuff I made a note of the Google result page positions for various keyword phrases such as “cityname realtor”, “cityname real estate”, “cityname homes for sale” etc.

Now two months after the relaunch, with new content being gradually added - such as property listings and a blog - the site isn’t moving up that much in the rankings.

Could the Google honeymoon period have to do with it, even though the domain name has been online for about 13 years?

I’ve heard that the honeymoon period be anything from 3-6 months, so does this apply to new content?

Any advice would be appreciated.

It would depend on too many factors, is there a lot of competition for real estate sites for your cityname? How high is your rank and how gradual your progress? How gradually is content being added.

Even if you do everything right there will never be a guarantee that you can get high rankings on any given keyword.

Did the domain registration information change (ie does it now show a new owner of the domain)?

If the domain registration information changes it could cause Google to reset the clock on the domain and treat it like a new one.

Build back links to new pages and content.

Very true - it’s a city name with tons of realtors. Was just wondering if a blank slate of a site (with a 13-year old name) that was starting to be rebuilt had a little bit more of an advantage with Google, than a blank slate of a site that was new to the web and being built.

Nope, the original (and same) owner of the name registered it for twenty (20) years back in 1998, until 2018! No idea how much that cost back then. Anyone hazard a guess?

If it’s an updated version of an old site, Google will probably start you off with the rankings and reputation that the old site had.

If it’s essentially a new site that just happens to use an old domain, Google will treat it as a new site.

I had a site that went up top for a low ranking keyword withing 10 days I think. I then read about the honeymoon period and worried, but it stayed there ever since…

Google has tendency to highlight web pages with new content in the search results and we call it Honeymoon period… After a certain period of time then this content become old, your website slips to its original deserving position… because your competitors are constantly generating new content and this is where your honeymoon period ends.

This is a really useful explanation. I suddenly had a high ranking for a keyphrase after a blog posting and then it slumped for no reason. Now I know why. :slight_smile:

Google has always preferred new content. Of course building backlinks is important too. If your site makes out a good combo of new content & backlinks you are on the way to high rankings in SERP.

When you say ‘new content’ does this apply equally to new pages and new content within existing pages or does Google favour one over the other?

I don’t think I understand the OP. Are you saying you noted the original positions for various keywords before the relaunch AND you’re not beating those rankings now? Or are you saying the relaunched site isn’t moving up the rankings at all?

I’m assuming that clearing ALL content means you deleted it entirely. If so, I hope you’re 301ing all of those URLs. If not, that would give you a huge boost in PR (assuming the old pages had backlinks).

I’m sure Google doesn’t allow content farming. But what have you explained “Zorro D” is really a complete knowledge for me and I’m sure it is complete definition. Thank for sharing it with us.

Upon including more of the actual keyword phrases (as typed in by searchers) in my content, my rankings have jumped up. Before I was being way too sparse.