I’ve been wondering what a doorway page is for 5 years now. Whenever I do some deep research into it, I get the same stock answer.
“Doorway pages are pages of content created using software that have very little quality content, and site managers use them to artifically inflate their page rank and traffic. Often the doorway pages are cloaked redirects which is and even uglier manipulation”
Ok….fair enough. But that does not answer the question in sufficient detail. I think I’ve finally figured out what a doorway page has to do to be considered as such by the SEs.
Obviously cloaking and redirecting will be seen as doorway pages by the search engines, but what about pages that Do have SOME valid content, and are used to get traffic and income.
When I first started the Internet income game, I used an eBook that showed me how to build niche sites. This was long before I blogged. Unfortunately, the author of the eBook unwittingly showed his students how to create web sites that use doorway pages. Because of this I saw some of my first sites getting banned by Google.
Ironically, I paid a writer to help me write all the content, so I had original content, but the site(s) still got banned. This led me to testing, and I’ve been testing for 4 years now.
This is what I’ve found:
1) it’s doesn’t matter how good your content is because your pages can still be seen as doorway pages
2) it’s doesn’t matter if you have a small number of these pages, because if they’re seen as doorway pages, they’ll get banned.
There is one sure way (that I’ve found so far) to avoid having allot of pages considered doorway pages on your domains. DON’T LINK TO THE HOME PAGE of the domain from any of your article pages. Also, if you have random links going to and from related article pages, the search engines will not see them as doorway pages.
So if you have a site you want to add a whack of pages to and you want to avoid the doorway page problem do this:
Create a new page off your main domain which acts as an index page for the particular topic. Add all your new pages in that topic or niche from this new page, and you can create a link on all your article pages back to this new index page, but DON’T LINK ANYWHERE ELSE. Don’t link to your domain home URL, and don’t have link clusters in the sidebar or at the bottom of the page. Only link from within the text to other pages in this “satellite” niche.
After 3 years of using this technique I’ve never had a site or blog banned for doorway page penalties.
These are my personal finding. I would be very interested to hear YOUR thoughts on this subject.