In place of the Meta refresh, some web sites have found clever ways to trick visitors into clicking a
link that leads them forward to the web site they’re being drawn to. There are also some web sites
that have designed content-rich doorways, which are doorway pages that have some element of con-
tent included as well as a basic navigational structure that’s consistent with the rest of the web site.
These pages, like other doorway pages, are still designed to draw high quantities of visitors.
Hidden and tiny text
If you plan to use hidden or tiny text on your page to draw search engine rankings, you should
probably change your plans. The practice of using hidden and tiny text was used a lot in the past.
It’s accomplished by including keyword-rich text that is the same color as the background of your
site. This text can’t be seen by the visitors that come to your site, but it can be read by search engine
The problem with using this technique is that search engines have caught on, so they are looking
for this trick and if they find it, you’ll be penalized or possibly even delisted. The offense is further
compounded if you happen to use keyword stuffing in addition to hiding your text within your web
site. Keyword stuffing is using a nonsensical stream of keywords, or using keywords out of place
on your site. When you combine this method with hiding your text, it’s just a matter of time before
search engines refuse to include your site in their search rankings.
Submitting your sites to search engines and directories is one tactic that some web-site owners use
to ensure their sites are detected by search engines (and it is covered more in Chapter 14). But most
of the larger engines, while providing a way to submit a URL, actually suggest that the best way to
be included in their index is to get a link to the URL.
Don’t use automated submission services if you decide to submit your URL. Submit everything by
hand, taking care to read the instructions completely.
Page jacking is a method of search engine spam that’s similar in nature to scraping. The difference
is that with page jacking, whole pages — and even whole web sites — are copied for the purpose of
increasing search ranking and traffic for another site.
In one example of page jacking, a person might copy a whole site like Microsoft. They then cloak
that site, but it still appears in search listings. Then, when unsuspecting users click through the
listing for Microsoft they’re taken not to the Microsoft page, but to another page that the hijacker
funnels them to.
Not only is page jacking a good way to get your web site delisted from search engine results, but it’s
also a crime that can result in a stiff fine and possibly jail time. There are also trademark and copy-
right infringement issues associated with page jacking.
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