Soft Launch Redux
One of the main reasons for conducting controlled experiments like this is that you see results you weren't expecting. A case in point was the soft launch of the optimised shop.
After submitting the site via Google's Webmaster Tools I went for lunch then wrote up that stage in the experiment. After that I checked on a search for the brand and the shop was already showing up as the second result - it can't have taken more than a couple of hours to make its way into the index. I'll admit I wasn't prepared for this quick a result but with SEO it's important to be able to track results and adapt your plans when an opportunity arises.
As an index request was made for the optimised shop's holding page there's an opportunity to put up a similar holding page for the control shop but not submit an index request and see how long it takes for this page to be indexed.
The key result from this stage of the experiment is that using Google's Webmaster Tools to submit an index request can result in content appearing in the index after a matter of hours.
This is part of a series of posts that cover experiments in SEO.
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