Cloaking and / or sneaky redirects

Google Algorithm Ranking Factors

(Number 105 of the 200)


Author: Dr. Manus Ward │Head of Digital Strategy and Data Protection │ is a qualified and experienced former hotel manager, culinary Olympic team manager and hospitality Head of School who is passionate about passing on the knowledge he gained from one of the few hotel digital strategy doctorates in the world to you the hotelier. Bonus: If you have any problems with this contact me (100% free) at or 086 8185829 on this or any aspect of your hotel’s digital strategy.

Why do we need to do this

Some low quality sites have used methods such as fake pages, redirects, text matching the background colour of the page etc to attract traffic inappropriately much to the annoyance of Google searchers. Google heavily penalises your site in the search rankings this so never ever do it.

What does this mean

Google wants every searcher to find exactly what they are looking for. The Google Algorithm scans sites to ensure they get this. Redirects to another site are perfectly acceptable to Google so long as Google can examine the content and ensure it is what the searcher is actually looking for. Sneaky redirects are where Google is shown one type of content and users are redirected to somewhere completely different mostly spam type content. Google may de-list your site completely meaning nobody searching Google will ever find your hotel.

What do I do: Very simply don’t ever engage in cloaking or sneaky redirects. You should know if your site is engaging in this kind of activity but if you want to check to be sure click on and do the following.

You will then get this page.

All green symbols mean there is no issue with cloaking or sneaky redirects on your site. If you find somebody on your behalf has engaged in cloaking or sneaky redirects without your permission, whatever you do next is your decision but be aware Google may de-list or heavily penalise your site at any minute making you completely invisible in Google to your potential guests. I don’t have to tell you what that will do to your business.

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