For those of you not looking for the back-story: Email a link to it to your Gmail account and Google will add it to their crawl list
A while ago, I had a page (albeit stupidly) that was hosted on a web server at an unlinked-to address with a randomised name (here to be precise – don’t worry, it’s not there any more!).
This page existed to quickly clear the database of a project I was working on for testing purposes. One day – I noticed that the database was unexpectedly empty. When I looked in to it, I realised that this page had been hit by GoogleBot. A pain; also very interesting. There were no inbound links to this page and it had not been submitted for crawling. How did Google find it?!
The only way that the link had been shared in any way, was that I emailed it to myself on my Gmail account. When I checked the timestamp on the email and compared it with the GoogleBot hit, it had hit literally a few minutes after I sent the email. Not coincidence.
This got me to thinking – can you do the same thing to get Google to index your page. You can.
I made a test page at: http://www.chrismaddern.com/durtificationary-post.html
The word durtificationary does not exist and has no hits or spelling corrections in Google. I made it up. I wanted to see if I could get it to be indexed and searchable on Google just by emailing it to myself.
See for yourself… http://www.google.co.uk/#q=durtificationary
It took longer than I expected to get indexed (it was crawled quickly, but not added to the results for a few days) but there it is now.
I’m running a more elaborate experiment now, to see if mentioning keywords in the email will cause association for Google (i.e. if the email is basically considered as a private page with an outlink).
Let's talk about it.
Head on over to Twitter and let's talk more.
Find me at @chrismaddern.