Cloaking is a deceptive SEO technique where the content presented to the search engine spider is different from that presented to the user's browser.


Cloaking, in the context of SEO, is a black hat technique that involves presenting different content or URLs to human users and search engines. This technique manipulates search engine rankings by making a website appear to contain information it does not. It misleads search engines to display the site for irrelevant searches.

Did you know?
Linkactions automatically generated 1,392 internal links for this website
It found them in just a few minutes and required less than 30 minutes to review.
Linkactions saved us days of hard work!

Usage and Context

Cloaking is used by some websites to try to trick search engines into ranking them higher for certain keywords. It's considered a violation of Google's Webmaster Guidelines because it provides users with different results than they expected. If a website uses cloaking, Google might remove it from the Google Index.


  1. What is cloaking in SEO?

    • Cloaking in SEO is a technique where different content is presented to the search engine and the website visitor. This is done to manipulate search engine rankings.
  2. Is cloaking illegal?

    • Cloaking isn't illegal in the sense of criminal law, but it is considered a deceptive practice by search engines and can result in the website being blacklisted.
  3. Does Google penalize for cloaking?

    • Yes, Google can penalize websites that use cloaking. This can result in a significant drop in rankings or even removal from the Google Index.
  4. How can I detect cloaking on a website?

    • Detecting cloaking can be done by comparing the website content when accessed from a search engine and when accessed directly.
  5. What is the difference between cloaking and sneaky redirects?

    • Cloaking and sneaky redirects are both deceptive SEO techniques. While cloaking involves showing different content to users and search engines, sneaky redirects send users to a different URL than the one they initially requested.


  1. No Real SEO Benefits: Cloaking is a black hat SEO technique and is strongly discouraged. While it might provide short term benefits in terms of rankings, it can lead to severe penalties including de-indexing of the website.

Tips and Recommendations

  1. Avoid Cloaking: Instead of trying to trick search engines, focus on improving your website’s user experience and providing valuable content.
  2. Follow SEO Best Practices: Adhere to SEO techniques that are in accordance with search engine guidelines, like proper keyword usage and quality link building.
  3. Use White Hat Techniques: White hat SEO techniques like producing high-quality content and improving site usability can improve your site's ranking without the risks associated with black hat techniques like cloaking.


While cloaking might seem like a good way to improve your site's SEO rankings, it's a risky technique that can result in your site being penalized or even removed from search engines. Instead of trying to trick search engines, it's much better to focus on providing high-quality content and a good user experience.