SEO October 4, 2020

[SEO] Should you submit a site to Google while it is under construction?

Cristian @XCS

I am working on a new product and already have the domain and a "Coming soon" page with some keywords on it. Does it help or harm the SEO if I submit the domain to Google for indexing before the actual page is live?

When to submit new domain to search engines?
  1. As soon as you purchase it
  2. After you have a "coming soon" page
  3. After the landing page is ready
Vote
  1. 3

    With such a new website, it really makes no difference.

    You could have the best page in the world, but if you just launched the site and have no other supporting content then it's not going to rank and having Google crawl it now vs a month from now doesn't make much of a difference.

    What really makes a difference is the age of your site, the amount of new content being created, and most of all: links to your site.

    I would recommend you submit your sitemap now (and set up Google Search Console) because it doesn't hurt, and it's best to get that set early before you forget and start to actually invest in content/marketing.

    1. 1

      Thanks for the info!

      I know that SEO is really complex and more of a black-box, I see that comments and poll are split. Some say that submitting early is good as domain age is a factor, others say that submitting with poor content might lead to Google applying a penalty for your domain that might affect you in the future.

      1. 1

        Np!

        That's the fun thing about SEO - on one hand you get recommendation A, on the other recommendation b :)

        While I def do not speak for Google, from experience if you have a simple homepage describing your product at a high level and a big 'more info coming soon' disclaimer I think that's fine. Penalties come into play when you do things that are malicious like copying content from another site, completely switching the content, doing shady things with redirects, etc.

  2. 2

    Yes, you should absolutely submit it as soon as possible. Google has this thing called a Sandbox where your website will not rank for the first few months (some suggest it's around 6). As you are building your website, you should keep tabs on how your technical SEO is going and come up with content as you go.

    If you are interested, you can sign up for SEOly (the product I'm currently working on) and we'll e-mail you every week with bite-sized tasks to improve your technical SEO

    1. 1

      I didn't know about the Sandbox thing, that's interesting.

      I might sing-up for your product, but I'm not sure what it does (no information on the page) and I am trying to reduce my email intake, I am subscribed to too many newsletters 😓

  3. 2

    My feeling on this is:

    1. yes do submit to Google

    2. but first even though it's a coming soon page write some optimised text for it with some info about the product that is coming soon. This doesn't have to be a lot of work - a couple of paragraphs will do the job.

    The reason is that according to current SEO knowledge the length of time a site has been live is a factor in Google's algorithm. Therefore start the clock as soon as possible.

    Once you have the full site up and running you can re-submit so it gets crawled again. Regularly updated sites also fair better than sites where the content is fully static over time so this may actually help.

    1. 1

      Thank you! This was also what I was planning to do, add some small article with important keywords in it and submit it to Google. The only thing I'm afraid of is Google penalizing the site for having little content or poor accessability and things like that, I am not sure if those penalties also affect ranking after they are fixed.

      1. 2

        No problem! My understanding on this is that content has to be very poor to pick up a 'penalty' (think scraped content, keyword stuffing, duplicate content etc.) - anything genuinely written about your product should avoid these. It might not get a big SEO boost like long-form quality content will. But since there is no actual penalty the content will be re-evaluated when the site is updated to the full version.

        Make sure you have your title-tags and meta-data optimised right from the start too.

  4. 2

    Yes and No.
    Google is not very clear about that : google preferes to have content to index, more than website. But waiting that you are ready to start beeing indexed is a bit waste of time.
    My reco : write a 500 words articles about the topic of the website, start indexing (because it can take time), and publish your website when you are ready.

    1. 1

      I agree, I think Google is not clear about anything, but having some relevant article should be good enough for SEO and also for me to be able to start sharing the link.

  5. 1

    As @tscionti already mentioned - does not make a big difference. However, if you want to be a perfecionist, I personally would not submit until the landing page is ready. Just gives a clean data to Google from the getgo, instead of the need of sumtiting a low quality coming soon page and then the need to Google to recrawl that when the new page is live.

    1. 1

      the need to Google to recrawl that when the new page is live

      As far as I know, Google likes recrawling, it considers pages that are updated often more valuable than pages that are never updated. So, in theory, wouldn't it be better to start with worse content and gradually improve it over time, than starting with nothing and then suddenly posting the content? The time when the not-perfect page is live might help with domain age and initial SEO?

      1. 2

        Yes, Google loves updated pages, but only those that already have authority or rank for X amount of keywords. For the page that has 0 of everything and then gets updated - for Google probably doesn't really matter. It won't give you an extra boost to have a low-quality page (intentionally) and then improve on it.

        As you can see, everyone provides different answers, but from my experience working on 50+ projects, it's better to submit the "as much finished" site as you can. Unless you plan on having this "coming soon" page for 10+ months of something like that, then it may make more sense to submit it know to start building domain age.

        Either way, this is such a small thing, that if I were you - I wouldn't bother. This is not going to actually impart you in any way.

        Focus on quality content and your actual website - this is a priority :)

  6. 0

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