Last updated on September 6th, 2017
Welcome to SEO Advantage’s End of 2014 Trivia Feature, where we discuss, dissect and comment on the internet and marketing, and how the two intertwine.
What is cloaking?
- Dressing up your website to make it look better
- Presenting a search engine spider with different content than displayed on a visitor’s browser
- Hiding your website from normal internet traffic
Not all webmasters practice good internet etiquette when it comes to them looking better for Google rankings. One such technique that some webmasters use to help improve their ranking is called cloaking. Cloaking is an SEO tactic in which the information presented to a search engine spider is different from the content that you have displayed on a visitor’s browser.
Developers do this by using the IP address or User-Agent HTTP header when a user calls up the page. If the person visiting the website is a search engine spider, a different web page loads from the server-side script. The search engine spider receives information that is not on the ‘official’ website and/or content that may not be searchable.
Google does not react favorably to this type of black hat SEO and, in fact, they banned BMW’s website in 2006 because they were using cloaking techniques. While cloaking is typically a technique to trick search engines, it can also be used to provide search engines with valuable information that they wouldn’t gain through other methods. This method, however, is antiquated and better methods have been developed.
We invite you to continue browsing our SEO blog to learn more, or click here to learn more about how you can optimize your business’ website for the search engines and enjoy high rankings, increased revenues and more.