Is Cloaking an Ethical or Unethical Practice?

Cloaking is a search engine optimization technique which is used by webmasters to trick search engine spiders by presenting a content to the visitors and completely different content to the search engines.There is a debate for and against cloaking. There are several facts which show cloaking is ethical and facts which shows it as unethical but be careful when your affiliates practice link cloaking.

Why Some People Think That Cloaking is Ethical

Suppose a page is ranked correctly then visitors will see it on the search results. It does not matter at all how the page get ranked and also it doesn’t matter whether another page replace it. Based on the topic, as long as the ranking is good and when we click on the listing, we arrive at the page which was expected, visitors get happy.

Links which have Session IDs in their URLs, they won’t get indexed and spider(ed) by Google’s crawlers. If the Google’s crawlers spiders the links then they have to potentially crawl infinite number of pages which is practically impossible. Google wants to spider all the pages of the website. The solution is cloaking of the pages. If the page request of the Google’s spiders can be spotted and if links exists without Session IDs, then Google is able to index all of the pages of the website. This is exactly the way Google and the visitors want. So, it will harm no-one. That’s why it can be said again that cloaking is such a search engine optimization techniques which if used very carefully will not harm your site.

Why Some People Think That Cloaking is Unethical

Cloaking provides severe frustration to the web surfers who are searching for a particular product or service. According to the process of cloaking, search engine indexed pages are completely different than the pages returned to the user. Due to it, the justified search for the user by search engines gets affected.

This is possible that the two pages are similar to some extent but this cloaking technique is still abusing.There is another reason due to which you must avoid cloaking and that is you can be banned from major search engines.

Image below is the example of cloaking.


Whether cloaking is ethical or unethical depends completely on the web user. Some people think that if cloaking is used very carefully then it will good for their site otherwise it will harm the site. It’s completely on the web user whether to use it not.

You can read : Latest Google Mobile Search Update