Hey guys, I've noticed there are so many varying opinions on cloaking. Some people despise it to an unbelievable extent, others are fairly liberal. My question! I have sites with plenty of original content and hundreds and hundreds of non-cloaked normal pages. I decided to put an affiliate program on ONE page of my site. I cloaked the site so that it would not display my affiliate code if the surfer clicks. What is the opinion on this? I put no index, no follow tags in the meta so it's not like I'll be benefiting in any way from search engines/bots crawling and getting traffic and also warded it off in the robots.txt What do you guys think? Honesty is entirely welcome. What is the harm in it? I noticed it certainly has helped my conversion ratios.
The "Quality Guidelines" included with Google's "Webmaster Guidlines" [google.com] suggest that cloaking pages and using hidden links are techniques that may cause Google to "respond negatively." All leading SEs have similar guidelines.