Increase Web Site Traffic: Search Engine Cloaking Web Site Promotion
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Chapter 2: Search Engines

Idea 2: Search Engine Cloaking


Because Spider-based search engines use automated software to build their indexes (see Idea 1: Spider-Based Search Engines), it is possible to fool them by using special cloaking software or scripts.

These cloaking products provide one set of web page content (content designed to achieve good rankings for your keywords) to the search engine's spider, and a different set (containing your actual page designs) to web surfers who visit your site.

Why would a webmaster want to do that? There are two main reasons:
  1. Because a page that is optimized for a good rank with the spider-software, may not be the prettiest page to web site visitors (and vice-versa). Cloaking software allows webmasters to deal with the ranking and page-design issues separately - without having to worry improvements in one area, weakening the other area.

  2. Because the cloaking software presents the optimized pages only to spiders (and not to web site visitors), the webmaster gets to keep his highly optimized HTML-code (and what keywords he is targeting) secret.
I won't hide the fact that we do have reservations about using cloaking (and consequently do not use it ourselves). Our reservations stem from one basic fact:
  • Many search engines discourage cloaking, and some have been known to ban sites if they discover that they are using cloaking techniques. We understand that this is because they feel the cloaked sites may be devaluing the quality of the results provided to search engine visitors.
Regardless of our reservations (and recommendation against cloaking), many webmasters do use cloaking software - so we leave it to you to consider the issues and ethics around this matter.



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