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What is Cloaking and Why you should not be doing it?

Blog | SEO | July 15, 2020 |

Having a website confers you with a responsibility to make it visible among the top search results whenever a relevant search is made by your potential audience. This means that you need to practice SEO techniques for your website that could take some time to grow the results.

But some webmasters do not wish to invest the necessary work and time for the optimization of a website and start using Cloaking to rank their websites on the search engines. 

Cloaking as nefarious as it sounds is an SEO technique through which the information or content presented to a visitor is different from the content that is being presented to the search engine robots.

In other words, Cloaking is a technique of returning altered pages of a website to the search engine crawlers thereby misleading the bots into different URLs and improving the search engine ranking of the website. It is considered as a Black hat SEO technique and is an illegal practice used for better indexing and is definitely never a good idea. Search engine crawlers are smart enough to figure it out and this won’t pay off well for your website. The search engine may permanently ban your site from its index if it is involved in cloaking.

What Google says about Cloaking?

Cloaking is an intervention of Google Webmaster’s quality guidelines as it presents different content to the searchers than what they were looking for. This could be including specific keywords in a page only when it is presented to the search engine crawlers and not to a human-user when he requests for the same page or showing an HTML page to the search engine while presenting an images page to the visitors. This way it misleads the search engine robots into thinking that the content on the page is relevant to the searcher’s query and is different than in fact it really is.

Why you should not be doing it?

Cloaking does work when it comes to improving the rank of a website. But it involves a great risk of getting your website removed from the search engine’s index and hence it is never recommended. Through Cloaking, you would trick the search engines and anyone who is visiting your site thereby ruining the reputation of your website. Hence, it is the most frowned upon SEO technique.

Chances are very less that your website will keep its search engine ranking for a long time using this technique. Because sooner or later search engines will find out and your website could get banned and you will ultimately lose all your rankings.

Many webmasters think that they can do White hat cloaking and it is legal but in fact, there’s no such thing as White hat cloaking. All types of cloaking are considered illegal and are against Google’s quality guidelines. Google does not feel any good about cloaking and takes it as a serious matter.

Its main aim is to provide a user exactly what he is looking for and a user’s experience helps it to decide whether something is to be considered as cloaking or not. So, if there’s something perceived by the Google bots as thoroughly different from what is being served to the end users then it a matter of concern for them.


Your website requires some efforts and time to generate traffic for you. The sooner you start practicing search engine optimizing techniques seriously, the sooner you will notice the results for the best of your efforts. Thus in order to get long-term results and higher rankings for your website, you should avoid Cloaking. 

If you have any queries regarding SEO strategies or need any help to get your website rank higher in search results, feel free to contact us at Ambiente Technologies.


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