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Masking URLs for everybody

Just wondering if it's cloaking



3:18 am on Nov 8, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hi all,

To make my site more search engine friendly, I globally changed the dynamic ASP URLs on my site (except for the forum which runs phpBB) to look like static pages, eg.

www.[website].com.au/browse/page999.html instead of

I am not differentiating between search engines or other users - this change applies to everyone whether a bot or a browser.

In addition I automatically redirect 404 errors to my sitemap, but still honor the 404 for the sake of bots.

Do you think that any of this counts as cloaking? I feel that it is in a way, but that it's pretty harmless because of the way I've done it.

Anyone feel that this is the wrong thing to do?


2:20 am on Nov 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

That is NOT cloaking and will NOT put your rankings at risk. On the contrary, Google recommends webmasters avoid query strings whenever possible and my experience is that it's good practice for any SE.


10:02 am on Nov 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanking you very much.. I just had a nagging doubt and wanted to double check.

I certainly have had some better results since doing this.


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