What Is Cloaking In SEO- The Simple And Informative Answer

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What Is Cloaking In SEO- The Simple And Informative Answer

Everybody has heard enough about how imperative is it to use SEO for higher rankings for your business’s growth. It might sound like an easy thing to do, but it is only while implementing the process that a person gets to know that it can take months or even years for SEO to work for your business profitably.

Resultantly, people try to adopt a shortcut which is sometimes inorganic, paid, and prohibited. All such methods are usually called black hat SEO, and cloaking is one of them.

For those who are unaware, the black hat SEO technique is a tactic to increase traffic or improve ranking through unethical ways; Search Engines like Google imposes a penalty on this technique. This is the reason why you should know about what is cloaking in SEO so that you do not end up getting blacklisted by mistake or due to a lack of knowledge about this concept. There are chances that you are unaware of the types of black hat SEO and using it unknowingly.

Black hat further includes cloaking, negative SEO, hidden text, hidden links, keyword stuffing, and many more. So, if you want to avoid the adverse consequences of unintentional cloaking, read till the end for your benefit.

What is cloaking in SEO?

As mentioned above, it is a type of black hat technique that is about having different URLs or content for the viewers and the search engine crawlers/ spiders. It means that cloaking helps in improving the ranking of your web page by deceiving the rank decider (crawlers of the search engines) by showing different content to the crawler and something else to the viewers.

Since it involves deception, it is considered a violation and is subjected to penalties like rank dropping, decreased conversions, lesser engagement, and even blacklisting.

How is cloaking done in SEO?

There are several ways by which one indulges in cloaking. Some of the most common ones are enumerated below.

  • Invisible or hidden text- The tactic here is to insert text on the web page in the color matching the background so that it becomes invisible to the readers. Resultantly, it becomes deceiving because the crawlers collect the hidden words, but the onlookers get different content.

  • Java script replacement- Another cloaking technique is to deceive a non-JavaScript user by presenting him content with the help of JavaScript. Mediums like Flash and multimedia features are used in this form of cloaking for better SEO results, improved rankings, and more audience.

  • Flash-based websites- Flash is about hiding the content or URLs of other web pages of a particular online site. Thus, the crawlers collect info about one page instead of the entire website, which is another deceptive way of ranking high by enriching just one content page.


  • HTML rich websites- The acceptable technique is to have a high Text to HTML ratio meaning the text on the web page should be more than the text in the HTML tag. However, cloaking is the opposite of this acceptable technique where people post short posts for better SEO acceptance.

Can you use cloaking for your online business presence?

Everybody wants quick, easy, and effective results while using SEO to improve the ranking of their web pages at the SERP or Search Engine Results Page. Thus, a person is bound to get attracted by black hat techniques like cloaking, which are unethical but fast.

However, given the prohibitions by Search Engines like Google and the penalties thereof, it is usually recommend to avoid cloaking or other black hat SEO tactics. Some businesses may find impressive traffic initially, but Google and other authorities will find such unethical doers sooner or later. Adopt organic and ethical ways only for your business’s long-term success.

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