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Alternate content based on ip - am I cloaking?
nippi




msg:3333482
 5:44 am on May 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

I have a client who serves different content depending on the ip address of the viewer.

Eg, Instead of Silver Jewelry $20USm I might write silver Jewellery $15E.

Goes a lot deeper than this, but you get the picture. My issues are:-

If googlebot is running from the US, and I am never showing the crawled data, other than in the US.... can I be penalized for cloaking.

Further, if Googlebot is only running from the US, and never seeing my slightly modified text for UK and Australia,(International English, local language and currency) how can I get rankings for these more local variations? People in Australia WILL write jewellery, not jewlry.

The pages are not sufficiently different enough, to warrant me classing them as different language versions and publishing both for google to see. I would expect to receive a duplicate content penalty for doing so, rather than the local language used reward I would of course prefer, for people searching locally.

I expect someone else has already dealt with this.

Suggestions?
I want to run both a US and International English version of a site, serve the valid content locally, not get pinged for duplicate content for the pages not being suitably different, but get both version indexed, so local users when searching, are searching on the phrases they would locally use to find my client’s products

 

Martin40




msg:3333872
 4:26 pm on May 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Big commercial sites that rank well on Google usually redirect to a subdomain depending on the user's country. In fact, google.com redirects to google.co.uk if you're in the UK.

tedster




msg:3333896
 4:55 pm on May 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Well, it's not a redirect, it's just serving different content at the same url, based on IP.

Is it cloaking? By the technical definition, yes. Is it deceptive cloaking? No, and I doubt that you will have a Google problem with it if you execute without errors.

Martin40




msg:3334133
 8:37 pm on May 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Well, it's not a redirect

You got me, Ted.

nippi




msg:3334214
 9:39 pm on May 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Ok on the redirect, but if googlebot is from the US, it won;t follow a redirection based on ip, and I won;t get alternative content crawled.

atlrus




msg:3334448
 1:55 am on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

How about a sitemap?

nippi




msg:3334565
 5:23 am on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Ok, this is what I have done.

both spellings appear on a page.

default is hide US spelling using css/javscript unless detect ip shows user is in US.

title tags contain both spellings, but use javascript so when visitors using the site, they only see one spelling.

There is a button on the page "View in US English, View in International English" that hides the different versions of words, so no issue of hidden text.

So now, I have one page, it has both version of words on it, user only sees one version, can change to the other so no issue of hidden text, and search engines see both on one page, so no need to do two version of site with ever so slight differences and risk dupe content.

things you do

gstewart




msg:3334641
 8:13 am on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

There is a button on the page "View in US English, View in International English" that hides the different versions of words, so no issue of hidden text.

I can't be the only person wondering what vast differences between so-called "US" and "International" English make this worth doing.

leadegroot




msg:3334671
 9:13 am on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

The solution makes my skin crawl, screaming 'hiding content' (from a bot point of view, that is)

The best solution I can think of is buying the additional domains (.uk, .au - whatever you are eligible to get) and putting the localised content up on those domains.
In theory you won't get pinged for dup content because the .au domain will only appear on google.com.au, not google.com and likewise for the .uk

Don't you wish you could send therough clarification requests to Google Search, the way you can for Adsense? :(

nippi




msg:3335331
 10:16 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

“I can't be the only person wondering what vast differences between so-called "US" and "International" English make this worth doing.”

Its a jewellery site, and the stones in the jewellery/jewlry have different colors/colours. The search result onhtese phrases wildly differ, and on items worth thousands of dollars, is a big deal.

Further, the difference in conversion of sales is equally massive, if you at least give the appearance that your site is local.

Leadegroot

I run a number of co.uk domains, and .com.au domains, that are top 10 on all google English speaking, this theory does not wash.

And no, though I can’t send anything through to google, I well and truly comment what I have done and why, so if I get a manual inspection, google are reading my comments.

Hiding content is my worry, but considering that to a bot, nothing is hidden, and to a user, sure, only one version is shown initially, but by clicking the button to change the English version, they can view the other version… I’m thinking this will be viewed more or less tha same as css/javascript navigation is. Hidden for reason of user experience, not bots, so not punishable.

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