| 7:07 pm on Jun 15, 2004 (gmt 0)|
I'd like to add that, in addition to caches, any search engine service should be accounted for, including shopping search, contextual advertising services, translation services, etc.
I've seen some cloaking sites use a reverse approach lately - serve the cloaked content unless the person can be verified as a real human user. It's an interesting approach if done correctly.
Remember tier-2 engines as well. A popular cloaking detection method is to go to Gigablast and check its cache for a cloaked site. Some people opt to serve the user-version to these tier-2 engines, however, defeating that approach.
| 7:14 pm on Jun 15, 2004 (gmt 0)|
That's right, I forgot to mention excluding the IP addresses translation services such as Alta Vista's Babelfish and Google's translation service.
Another thing I forgot was proxies. Google maintains a WAP proxy, by which those using WAP appliances can use a Google IP address to access web pages. It's wise to exclude these types of proxies from your list of IP addresses.
| 7:22 pm on Jun 15, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Personally i would have thought the use of cloaking to deal with language variations and content visibility for SEO would be an optimum solution - certainly has my interests.
| 9:03 pm on Jun 16, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Reading these threads put a big? in my head.
Can a simple strategy of blocking countries based on IP address be miss judged as cloaking?
For example if visitors IP is Nigeria , Singapore or Sri Lanka we serve a 'Sorry we don't ship to your country' page. I wonder if this could be a potential SEO problem for us in the future.
| 12:28 am on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Note that GGuy said several months ago that 95% of sites using this tag were cloaking so should there ever be a wholesale crackdown on "cloaking", if you use this tag, its a red flag which is crying out for closer inspection.
If you can figure out techniques to not display your cache without using the "noarchive" tag, that may be better for you long-term.
| 10:40 am on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|keep your cloaked pages on a separate domain from your primary website |
Sorry to be dense, but how in the world does that help your primary domain? if MyCloakedSite.com ranks super-well for "high-priced widgets", how does that bring people to MyPrimarySite.com? If redirects are the answer, didn't you just lose the disconnection between the two that the separate domain & WhoIs info created?
| 12:00 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)|
> If redirects are the answer, didn't you just lose the disconnection between the two that the separate domain & WhoIs info created?
Guess so, but presumably if a SE were to ban sites on that premise, it would be pretty easy for people to knock out competitors sites by cloaking them from another domain...?
| 6:08 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|Sorry to be dense, but how in the world does that help your primary domain? if MyCloakedSite.com ranks super-well for "high-priced widgets", how does that bring people to MyPrimarySite.com? If redirects are the answer, didn't you just lose the disconnection between the two that the separate domain & WhoIs info created? |
Some cloaking software packages use perl's LWP module to grab a page from your primary site (like the home page) and display it under the URL of the cloaked page. This technically isn't a redirect, and since it all happens server-side, there's no indication to the viewer (the human) at all.
| 11:36 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)|
It is always funny how seo vs engines follow the same path as criminals versus police.
You may be able to keep a step ahead for a while, but is it worth it? Do you really want to wake up everyday and wonder if they are on to me yet?
Every reputable and noteworthy search marketer has the same outlook - if a search engine did not exist, would you still do it?
So if all you folks are seriously considering cloaking, fine. You may get a head of the crowd temporarily, but long term it is just an unhealthy form of search marketing that will not pay off.
BTW - the automated indexing technology may never catch you, but don't think for a minute that your competitors can't report you and the powers that be can't act upon that information. Site bans are done manually.
| 1:38 pm on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)|
>>an unhealthy form of search marketing that will not pay off.
It sure would pay off as a defensive measure when content is being swiped.
>>don't think for a minute that your competitors can't report you and the powers that be can't act upon that information.
That's automatically assuming that the pages that get reported are actually in violation of the guidelines; they may not be at all. And then the powers that be may just decide to take a closer birds-eye look at those particular searches and do a little surfing, and there's no guarantee that the competitor's site is clean as a whistle. People violate guidelines every day of the week without even realizing they are.
As a matter of fact, how about taking a little side trip down memory lane to this discussion:
Cloaking Gone Mainstream [webmasterworld.com]
| 2:36 pm on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|if a search engine did not exist, would you still do it? |
Maybe not. But that's not reality, is it?
If cars didn't exist, I probably wouldn't learn how to drive, either.
There are some instances where cloaking is absolutely necessary. I'm talking about doing it for sites where the technology (generally CMS) that they've used is so far screwed up that they can't get anything but the homepage in the index. What's the downside to cloaking there? What is there to lose? Nothing.
Besides, as far as your competitors that might be cloaking to "hide their code", for the good ones, you'll probably never figure out that they are cloaking.
|Every reputable and noteworthy search marketer |
Not true. There's a few well-known search engine marketers that swear by cloaking.
| 7:22 pm on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)|
This topic is quite interesting, I read this thread and the previous 13 pages!
For my website I implemented IP/Country based display of prices which i assume goes under the category of legal cloaking. However I can say that since doing this the rankings have sharply decreased in Google! which is somewhat surprising to me because Google encourages 'relevant results' so i assumed if somebody in Japan is seeing the prices in Yen is more relevant than seeing in US$.
May be i should make all the pages "Robots NOArchive"?!
btw if Google forbids illegal (AND/OR) legal cloaking, just type in Google 'cloaking' and watch the lengthy array of sponsored listings that comes up, which sounds quite paradoxical with their rather eagle eyed editorial process, which i think we are all familiar with :)
| 10:06 pm on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|May be i should make all the pages "Robots NOArchive"?! |
This wouldn't help in your situation because you aren't really cloaking for SEO reasons. You are cloaking for geographic reasons, which is a different animal.
You might want to examine other possible factors as to why your ranking went down. Your version of cloaking doesn't usually trip any kind of alarm with Google.
| 12:33 am on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)|
That's true volatilegx.
I was just thinking how Google might classify these different types of cloaking. May be they expect that everybody does Geo targeting as they do! as far as i have seen in Google's own Geo targeting always the urls are unique. for example what is www.google.com/page1.htm, in the UK is www.google.co.uk/page1.htm. Maybe if the same URL as a result of IP change produces different content, in the eyes of Google violates the integrity of their DBs and their algorithms?
| 2:56 pm on Jun 20, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|if a search engine did not exist, would you still do it? |
If search engines didn't exist then I'd be out of a job. :D
| 8:20 pm on Jun 21, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|as far as i have seen in Google's own Geo targeting always the urls are unique |
That's not quite true. You can choose "go to google in English" and see google.com (and not google.pl for example) in any country. But you still won't see ads that are targeted towards the United States.
| 3:23 pm on Jun 22, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Would all this cloacking technology be unnecessary if a client
accepted a basic site with , say 1 nice top graphic?
Alternativerly, why couldn't we just place a div tag near the top of the page
that holds our optimised text and a link to our optimsied site map.
Then further down the page we keep
all the spohiticated graphics etc.
So the engine would hit the div tags first and crawl all our optimsied areas of the site
before having to bother with
| 4:25 pm on Jun 23, 2004 (gmt 0)|
You can go that route, and the search engines will be more than happy to index you.
However, what happens when a competitor views the source of your page and copies your techniques?
Keeping your competitors from viewing your optimized source is the real purpose behind cloaking as used by SEOs. Cloaking does not give you a better chance of getting a good ranking. It merely hides your optimized page from human eyes (including your competitors).
Cloaking is primarily a defensive technique designed to protect your HTML from your competitors' eyes.