Google warns against cloaking: we can detect
In a recent blog post, Google's anti-spam engineer Matt
Cutts wrote about
cloaking. The blog post makes several things clear:
- Google doesn't like cloaking.
- It doesn't matter if a small or a big company uses cloaking.
- Websites that use cloaking will be removed from Google's
- Google will detect all cloaking attempts sooner or later.
What is cloaking?
Cloaking is a search engine optimization technique in
which the web page content presented to search engine spiders
is different from that presented to the normal web surfers.
This is done by delivering web page content based on the
IP address or the User-Agent of the user requesting the
When a user is identified as a search engine spider, a
script on the server delivers a different version of the
web page. The purpose of cloaking is to deceive search
All major search engines consider cloaking to be a violation
of their guidelines. For that reason, websites that use
cloaking will be banned from the search results.
Google's opinion on "undetectable" cloaking
In his recent blog post, Google's Matt Cutts commented
on a Danish company that offered 'undetectable' cloaking
to its customers.
Google tried to check if this claim was true and they
quickly found a website that used the services of the company.
It turned out that their cloaking wasn't undetectable at
"If someone is trying to manipulate Google by deceptive
cloaking, it means that a webserver is returning different
content to Googlebot than to users.
Thatâ€™s a condition that can be
checked for by algorithms or manually, and such cloaking
is certainly not 'undetectable.'"
Don't risk your search engine rankings
You might get short term results with shady SEO techniques
such as cloaking but it is very likely that your site will
be banned from search engines if you use them. You'll put
your web business at severe risk if you use black-hat SEO
If you want to get lasting results, better use ethical search
engine optimization techniques.
It's not a good idea to trick search engines. They will
discover this sooner or later. If you want to know how to
get high search engine rankings without offending search
engines, take a look at our free SEO