Google’s Crackdown on Doorway Page Campaigns

As a part of minimizing the impact of webspam, Google is introducing a new update to crackdown on doorway campaigns – a move that alerts you to pay more attention to website design and optimization. These campaigns appear as pages on a site, as a number of domains or a combination thereof. The search engine giant is planning to launch a ranking adjustment to address these pages better as well as to improve the quality of search results.

Google's Crackdown on Doorway Page Campaigns

Doorway Pages and Its Impact on User Experience

According to Google, doorways are sites or pages that are created to rank highly for specific search queries. These pages lead users to multiple pages in search results, with each result ending up at essentially the same destination or taking users to intermediate pages that are not as useful as the final destination. Some of the examples of undesirable practices given by the search engine giant are as follows:

  • If a particular website has multiple domain names or pages targeted at specific regions or cities and funnel users to a single page
  • Web pages generated to funnel visitors to the actual usable or relevant portion within your site(s)
  • Substantially similar web pages closer to search results than a clearly defined browseable hierarchy

In their announcement, Google made it clear that they have a long-standing view that doorway pages created merely for search engines can impair the quality of the user’s search experience. In case of doorway pages, users who click on one result, do not find it useful, and then try the next result in search, are taken to the same site that they had found not useful earlier. This is really a frustrating experience. The search engine giant aims at devaluing sites that try to maximize their searches with large and well-established doorway campaigns rather than content that has clear and unique value.

How to Avoid Getting Penalized by the Doorway Page Algorithm

To help webmasters, Google has given some questions to ask of pages that could be seen as doorways such as:

  • Is the purpose of the pages is to optimize for search engines and funnel visitors or are they really an integral part of user experience?
  • Are the pages intended to rank on generic terms while the content is very specific?
  • Do the pages duplicate useful aggregations of items (for example locations, products) that already exist on the website for capturing more search traffic?
  • Are those pages created solely for capturing affiliate traffic and sending users along without having unique value in content or functionality?
  • Do those pages exist as an “island?” Are they difficult or impossible to navigate to from other parts of your site? Are links to such pages from other pages within the site or network of sites created solely for search engines?

To avoid getting penalized by the new update, find correct answers to these questions, ensure all odd things are removed, and revamp your website as early as possible – before the launch of the update.

Make sure that your web pages provide useful content that is not stuffed with keywords and try to keep a unique single page for users, no matter where they are coming from. Use a single domain that provides unique and valuable content. Avoid sub domain and content scrapping. Get professional help, if necessary.