At the end of last week, I came across a post on SE Roundtable. The post itself had nothing at all to do with re-inclusion requests into the Google Index, however, Matt Cutt's replied to the post and in usual fashion, people replied directly to Matt in regards to problems with their sites. One of the responders made me realize just how "Reinclusion" can mistakenly be thought to do something else.
Believe it or not, the re-inclusion request has been interpreted by more than one person as being able to get a website into the top rankings for keyword searches. Webmasters who are new to the whole search optimization realm might mistakenly believe that by filling out the form, soon enough their site(s) will be included into the top ten ranking for the keywords they targeted.
Google's Reinclusion Request isn't for requesting Google to put your website into the "top ten" or on "the first page" for certain keywords. If it were only that easy, everyone would be flooding Google every minute of the day.
Google's Reinclusion Request is for sites who have been pulled from Google's index or penalized in some way for "high-risk" behavior "unbecoming of a webmaster" (that is my addition). Basically, if you've been trying to trick the search engine spiders from Google, trying to manipulate the search engine rankings in any way (knowing or unknowing) and Google finds out, their course of action is to pull the website from the index, or to "penalize" the site. Sometimes unknowing clients utilize the services of unscrupulous Search Marketing firms that used "high-risk" tactics to get high rankings. After the job is finished the Search Marketing firm disappears and soon do the rankings they produced because the site's been pulled from Google's index, or a penalty has been applied that has bounced the site into oblivion.
It's only upon finding out their site has been yanked from the index or a major drop in traffic, do the reasons why appear to the site owner or the new online marketing manager. Full comprehension of adhering to the guidelines sets in and that's when the real work begins. Once the site is cleaned up, and adheres to Google's Webmaster Guidelines, that's when Re-inclusion Requests come into play.
A Re-inclusion Request attempts to assist you in getting your site back into Google's index or to have Google re-evaluate the penalties previously applied. There's no secrets here, no special passwords, nor special sauce required. Fill out the form, and Google then takes the time to evaluate your request.
Now, how do you know if you are in Google's index? It's not by searching on your keywords and seeing if you come up, it's by using another command, the site: command will show if you are in the directory or not. In Google's search box type in site:www.yoursitename.com, it will return the number of pages (approximately in the case of large sites) it has in the index from your site.
If that query isn't returning anything, you likely have a problem. Start by looking in Google Webmaster Central for help, it's a great resource to get you pointed in the right direction!