I recently heard that if you have links on your site and use 'onmouseover' to make the status bar show a different URL than the actual href URL (which also may be different than the final destination URL), you could lose your google rank (or at least be penalized).
Has anyone see this happening on their sites?
Maybe Google could chime in and provide some insight?
Href link is to my server side redirect (www.mysite.com/aid=2345.jsp). Onmouseover shows destination URL to visitor as www.retailer.com and actual destination URL is redirected by an affiliate network (www.affiliate-network.com/PID=234442).
Why would I do this? Let's say I am an affiliate and I want visitors to see the target URL (www.example.com) when they mouse over my affiliate tracking link in the status bar (better click through rates?). My concern is that the actual URL (href) is www.qksrv.net/click-xxx. Does Google see this as misleading or confusing and penalize sites that have these links and lower their google rank? I heard that someone thought this was true and wanted to see if anyone else experienced this or knew how Google treated these links.
Sample link code with onmouseover added: <a href="http://www.qksrv.net/click-xxx" target="_top" onmouseover="window.status='http://www.example.com/index.asp';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=' ';return true;"> <img src="http://www.qksrv.net/image-xxx" width="120" height="90" alt="Memory from example.com" border="0"></a>
[edited by: NFFC at 12:19 am (utc) on May 22, 2003] [edit reason] Specifics removed [/edit]
So your intent is to deceive the user into thinking that the URL displayed is in fact the one that will be used and if you don't use this method of concealing the actual URL it results in not so many users clicking the link? Is that correct?
No, I am not trying to deceive anyone. The idea is I don't want the user to think that the bannner for Crucial.com is taking them anywhere but to www.crucial.com; even though they get redirected through the affiliate tracking URL - qksrv.net. When they mouse over the link they see the final destination URL instead of the redirected tracking URL.
Yes, I think more people will click on these links.
But my concern is that I have heard (hopefully incorrectly) that Google may penalize pages that use onmouseover scripts. BTW, this is not the only reason a site would use the onmouseover script - this is just one example I am using that I felt others could easily relate to.