When creating websites or webpages for organic search engine listings (SEO) or paid search engine listings (SEM) it is important to avoid “Bridge Pages” or “Doorway Pages” or you might experience penalties from these SEO & SEM techniques.
But first, in order to avoid these penalties, you first have to understand what exactly these penalties are and what they look like. So we will first have to ask the right questions and answer those questions.
What is a Search Engine Penalty?
When people refer to receiving penalties in the search engines or receiving a search engine penalty they are normally referring to a factor in the search engine’s proprietary algorithm that calculates and determines the ultimate placement you will receive for specific search term (s) queries related to the subject matter or “theme” of you web page.
As you can imagine there are hundreds if not thousands of factor that are taken into account and considered in determining the way a search engine will rank your page in the search results for any specific query. A penalty is what is known or assumed through reasonable hypothesis or A/B testing to have been determined as something that “Hurts” your page in the search engines and DECEASES your chances of better placement. So if there is a tactic or web development process that is known to hurt you in getting better search listings you are best to heed that warning and try avoiding whatever that penalty might be. Search Engine Optimization is similar to taking a test is school. There are right answers, wrong answers, open ended answers, and some luck. Well “Doorway Pages” or “Bridge Pages” are the wrong answer, so you should look to avoid creating these when and where possible.
What is a Doorway Page or Bridge Page?
Doorway Pages and Bridge Pages are basically the same thing. At the end of the day, they mean the same thing. They are pages designed or developed that have little value and basically are put in place to confuse or trick the search engines to then send those visitors to a different destinations then they originally intended. They are often techniques used by spammers, Black Hat SEO people, quick buck artist, or simply developers and people that don’t know any better. It is unfortunate that some people with good intentions fall victim to the ramifications of those with ill intentions, but such as the world, this is how it works.
Therefore, doorway and bridge pages are pages that basically have little to know content, service, or technology of value to offer the user. A simple mistake made by many would be to have a page in the paid or organic search results optimized for toys. When someone gets to that page there is a link to Ebay or Amazon’s toys pages. This could be a basic link or an affiliate link. Either way, the page has no value to the user. They could have just gone to the toys page on Amazon. Another example could be having a page optimized for airline tickets and that page sends people to a page for life insurance. The list goes of examples could go on for days. There is nothing wrong with creating and optimizing individual pages for a product or service. You just want to make sure you offer that and the page is completely legitimate.
- IPhone Page: This page is fine. It offers ratings, product descriptions, buying, and much more. If this page was to be at the top of a paid search campaign or an organic search campaign for the search term “Apple Iphone 5” or simply “Iphone 5” it would be completely relevant and acceptable.
- PlayStation 4: This page is fine. It offers ratings, product descriptions, buying, and much more. If this page was to be at the top of a paid search campaign or an organic search campaign for the search term “PlayStation 4” it would be completely relevant and acceptable.
But essentially these are the things a page should have and the questions/rules you should be following.
- Does the page have content? You should have some sort of valuable content on the page.
- Is the page unique? Have you made hundreds of pages just like it and sent them out on the Internet. Would all the pages look the same or would each page have something unique to offer from your site.
- Are you offering something original or or you simply linking out to something else. If it is original, you will be fine, if not you could be in trouble.
- Have you remade the same page with different keywords? Penalty!
For more information on doorway pages and much more…
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