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However, today when I was doing some research on the site, such as keywork density and phrases, I noticed that at the bottom of the page there are some links that are invisible.
This is obviously against Google guidelines - what should I do? Should I report it to Google, and if so how? I know there is a spam reporting form, but I have never seen a cloaked links report page - anyone know where it is or if there is one? What would Google do? anything? would they actually blacklist the site or drop it down the list?
What does everyting think about reporting this to Google and Yahoo etc. To be honest, I want to report them because its unfair, but i also firmly believe that I could optimise my site better and get back to the top of the list, so removing this unfair advantage...
I'd seriously doubt a few links at the bottom of a page(s) would give them a lot of advantage.
On the other hand, when you indicate you are "optimizing key words".. is this an attempt to influence G? Maybe some of the techniques you used caused the problem?
I've always been more successful by working on content and the organization of content than wasting time reporting someone. If they're doing something "bad" or "black" enough, we can always hope G will deal with it.
And their stockholders, as well.
Report them every two weeks if they are in googles index. Be very specific when you report. Also, report them via webmasters tools!
To answer one of the points raised - the site is cloaking links to things like business indexes, where you have to have a recipocal link on the front page of your site to be able to get a good position in their pages, but there also some hidden keywords in the background.
Also, it could be something that I have done to effect my ranking, but I am not using dodgy techniques - just plain old 'organic' seo - refreshing content, getting more links to better pages etc. I gues I'll see if its something i'm doing after Google next indexes me!
Also, one user asked for the URL for reporting this sort of thing, I think i'm right in saying its this one:
Always worth reporting, however, especially if the spammer is damaging your site (and tell Google that!).
Please also report back on the action taken / not taken.
Seeing sites with 1998 methods must make Google's spam team laugh, but I doubt they take much effort to punish such futile attempts ;)