RESOURCES & LINKS
Unethical SEO services : SPAM & Doorway pages
Webmasters, business owners and search engine positioning and SEO services know the value of a top search engine position.|
Often, people get desperate and they are tempted to use tricks or unethical SEO methods in trying to deceive a search engine with the sole purpose to improve the search engine rankings of their pages :
Why some use spam ?
- High search engine rankings are most valuable.
- Most users won't look any further than the first 3 pages of the search engine results for given query.
- Delivering good SEO services requires knowledge, insight and is time consuming.
- We all want more visitors, more clients, higher turnover and profit. One must be welling to pay for ethical seo services or for Pay Per Click advertising.
- Some SEO services often promise a ranking on the first page of search engine results, together with a no cure no pay guarantee.
Sometimes, all means including tricks and spam are used to avoid a pay back.
- It happens people are not aware that they use SPAM.
What are the consequences of using spam ?
A search engine can react differently to every kind of spam it detects :
Don't use spam and avoid seo services using tricks while it's not easy to revover from a ban !
- The text or tag with the spam may be ignored.
- The spam technique may be a negative factor in the ranking algo dealing with the search engine positioning.
- The entire page may either automatically either manually receive a penalty causing the page to disappear from the search engine results, until the spam is removed.
- The entire website, the domain, may get banned from the index.
- When you link to a website, it means you want to promote that website. If this website you are linking to uses unethical search engine positioning techniques, the website that contains the link may also be penalised.
By using doubtfull seo techniques a website might rank high for a while, however don't expect any long time results.|
The costs you paid for so called specialised seo services that include spam in their search engine positioning techniques, will be wasted money and there is a major chance that your site will suffer from an unrecoverable ban.
Will every kind of spam be found by search engines ?
By focussing more and more on the visable parts of pages (text, contents and design), the unvisible parts (meta tags, comments...) become less valuable for ranking considerations.
A clear exemple of this is the keyword meta tag.
In the early days of internet, this was one of the most important tags. Nowadays, the importance of this tag has been reduced to zero because some used to stuff this tag with irrelevant keywords.
Relevance has become the major factor. The usage of deceptive titles and off-topic link texts on pages are seen as spam. Due to their irrelevance, high search engine positioning is impossible anyway.
Unethical seo services and spammers can be very inventive, they think about new tricks and just like with a disease, a cure can only be developped after the virus or the bacteria has been discovered.
Search engines try to include a cure in their ranking algoritmes, by means of a filter, so the spam could be automatically detected.
Still, there are a lot of websites that obtain high rankings for their pages eventhough they use obvious spam and doubtfull search engine positioning techniques. However, they could disappear from the search engine results as fast as they came. Do you want to take that risk ?
It's also worthwile knowing that Google, the absolute number 1 of all search engines, is asking ethical seo services for help to discover spam and to report spam by filling in a spamreport.
Also note that if your website has a top search engine position, your competitors will study your pages very carefully ! They could report your website if they find deceptive tricks that were implied by either you or by the seo services you are contracting with.
What are the unethical search engine positioning techniques ?
Statement : Every attempt to deceive search engines or visitors, as well every technique to deliver information to search engines, that is different than the information seen by vistors, is UNETHICAL and means SPAM.
There are several kinds of spam, the one being more obvious than the other.
This page should not be a guide for spammers so we will not get into all details, however should you consider to improve the rankings of your website, then you should know what search engine positioning techniques to avoid.
Also, if you get an offer by any seo services provider, then you should check on their websites, -also in the source code-, to see if they use spam.
This is the most common spam :
- Hidden text or hidden links : the text colour is (nearly) identical to the background color or image.
- The use if very small fontsizes.
- Keuword stuffing, continuously repeating the same keyword or phrase.
- Deceptive titles that are irrelevant to the pages or web site content.
- Deceptive alt-tags. Also the usage of very small images combined with a keyword stuffed alt tag.
- Using tags for purposes that they are not meant for.
A <H1>-tag should occur at the beginning of the body section and not in the middle of the page. Above all, the visual appearance of this tag should differ from all other text.
- cloaking : feeding the search engine spider with different content than the one that visitors will see.
- Automatic redirects to other pages of websites.
- Putting content off screen. E.g. disabling a scroll bar or making it unvisible, thus making it impossible to see all the page content.
Are you doubting wether a technique is spam or not ?|
Then ask yourself if you would use this technique if search engines don't exist. If the answer is 'no', then you have a good indication that it might be spam.
Design and optimize for your visitors !
How about doorway pages, are they spam ?
Some SEO services will create doorway pages to promote a website.
Those pages are optimized to rank high for 1 or more keywords and sometimes especially for only one search engine.
They seldom include pictures of images, and besides this one link towards another website they are working for, there is no menu or navigation.
Doorway pages contain nothing but "duplicate content". They have the same theme as an other website and also identical, though optimized, content...
Typically, doorway pages are pages without any incoming links unless links from the seo services provider itself. Doorway pages can reside on a domain owned by the seo services provider or on the domain of the promoted website.
The most deceptive kind of doorway pages, are the ones owned by seo services providers, who can use the very same pages to promote your competitors website, as soon as you stop using their services !
It's not always easy for a search engine to detect doorway pages so they might be good for short term search engine positioning purposes. However, sooner or later, good search engines will detect the doorway pages - or even the doorway domain- and remove them from their index.
The domain they were promoting could be removed at the same time !
OUR ADVICE :
NEVER USE DOORWAY PAGES and NEVER LET YOUR WEBSITE BE PROMOTED BY SEO SERVICES PROVIDERS WHO USE THEM.
Optimise the pages on your website !
When your pages lack content, when your pages can not be optimized, then you should adjust your pages or create additional pages with valuable and unique content, and those new pages should be integrated into your website !
Your business, read your website, the search engines and the visitors, will benefit from them... and they will deliver long term results.
And still, doorway pages are most often used by seo services.
Doorway pages used to be tolerated by all search engines and they appeared to be a fast and easy way to achieve top rankings. Spam policies have changed however and many seo services providers are not even aware about doorway pages being considered as spam.
Probably this unawareness is also inspired by search engines who include a PFI policy (Pay For Inclusion). If you pay for the submission of the doorway page, then it might be indexed due to financial considerations.
However, Google does not have a PFI inclusion program. As a consequence, their relevance for queries and their returned results is remarkebly high. No wonder they became world's biggest search engine.
What search engines say about doorway pages|
Reasons your site may not be included : You employ doorway pages. Google does not encourage the use of doorway pages. We want to point users to content pages, not to doorways or splash screens.
ref. Google information for webmasters
Alltheweb / Yahoo
Snippet : Some pages are created deliberately to trick the search engine into offering inappropriate, redundant or poor-quality search results; this is often called "spam." Yahoo! does not want these pages in the index
and next : Pages dedicated to directing the user to another page.
ref. Yahoo! Help > Search spam and deletions
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