Search Engine Bytes
 by Casey Markee

Wouldn't it be easier to just copy the #1 page?

Question:
Recently we were asked why would it not be the smartest thing to do, in terms of submission, to simply, in all cases, and with all SE's, copy the source code for the number one site and simply submit that and then, using the "bait & switch" method, simply replace the page with the "real" site's document once the page shows up in the SE.

Answer:
Good Question -- In theory, this should work but more often than not it doesn't...and there are several reasons for NOT attempting to cheat in this fashion.

First, you are likely to be in flagrant violation of copyright and/or using registered trademarks without permission. And, if you are successful you are even more likely to be caught.

Second, the page you are copying may in fact be the current number one page in a given index yet not score well at all if it were resubmitted. This can happen if the page is "old" or if it is itself a "bait & switch" page. It can also happen if the page is in a popular keyword category and, say, the top 50 pages are ALL tied for #1 in relevancy score... and to make matters even more challenging, it is very difficult to determine the actual #1 page in indexes that do not publish relevancy scores -- like Alta Vista.

Third, there is the lag time to consider. Although your plan might work with Infoseek's instant submit process or even Alta Vista's "two day" indexing -- you'd be hard pressed to find, on a timely basis, your "newly indexed, and needs to be switched ...

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