Our spam policies help protect users and improve the quality of search results. To be eligible to appear in Google web search results (web pages, images, videos, news content or other material that Google finds from across the web), content shouldn't violate Google Search's overall policies or the spam policies listed on this page. These policies apply to all web search results, including those from Google's own properties.
We detect policy-violating content and behaviors both through automated systems and, as needed, human review that can result in a manual action. Sites that violate our policies may rank lower in results or not appear in results at all.
If you believe that a site is violating Google's spam policies, let us know by filing a search quality user report. We're focused on developing scalable and automated solutions to problems, and we'll use these reports to further improve our spam detection systems.
Our policies cover common forms of spam, but Google may act against any type of spam we detect.
Cloaking refers to the practice of presenting different content to users and search engines with the intent to manipulate search rankings and mislead users. Examples of cloaking include:
- Showing a page about travel destinations to search engines while showing a page about discount drugs to users
- Inserting text or keywords into a page only when the user agent that is requesting the page is a search engine, not a human visitor
If a site is hacked, it's not uncommon for the hacker to use cloaking to make the hack harder for the site owner to detect. Read more about fixing hacked sites and avoiding being hacked.
If you operate a paywall or a content-gating mechanism, we don't consider this to be cloaking if Google can see the full content of what's behind the paywall just like any person who has access to the gated material and if you follow our Flexible Sampling general guidance.
Doorways are sites or pages created to rank for specific, similar search queries. They lead users to intermediate pages that are not as useful as the final destination. Examples of doorways include:
- Having multiple websites with slight variations to the URL and home page to maximize their reach for any specific query
- Having multiple domain names or pages targeted at specific regions or cities that funnel users to one page
- Pages generated to funnel visitors into the actual usable or relevant portion of your site(s)
- Substantially similar pages that are closer to search results than a clearly defined, browseable hierarchy
Hacked content is any content placed on a site without permission, due to vulnerabilities in a site's security. Hacked content gives poor search results to our users and can potentially install malicious content on their machines. Examples of hacking include:
- Page injection: Sometimes, due to security flaws, hackers are able to add new pages to your site that contain spammy or malicious content. These pages are often meant to manipulate search engines or to attempt phishing. Your existing pages might not show signs of hacking, but these newly-created pages could harm your site's visitors or your site's performance in search results.
- Content injection: Hackers might also try to subtly manipulate existing pages on your site. Their goal is to add content to your site that search engines can see but which may be harder for you and your users to spot. This can involve adding hidden links or hidden text to a page by using CSS or HTML, or it can involve more complex changes like cloaking.
- Redirects: Hackers might inject malicious code to your website that redirects some users to harmful or spammy pages. The kind of redirect sometimes depends on the referrer, user agent, or device. For example, clicking a URL in Google Search results could redirect you to a suspicious page, but there is no redirect when you visit the same URL directly from a browser.
Here are our tips on fixing hacked sites and avoiding being hacked.
Hidden text and links
Hidden text or links is the act of placing content on a page in a way solely to manipulate search engines and not to be easily viewable by human visitors. Examples of hidden text or links that violate our policies:
- Using white text on a white background
- Hiding text behind an image
- Using CSS to position text off-screen
- Setting the font size or opacity to 0
- Hiding a link by only linking one small character (for example, a hyphen in the middle of a paragraph)
There are many web design elements today that utilize showing and hiding content in a dynamic way to improve user experience; these elements don't violate our policies:
- Accordion or tabbed content that toggle between hiding and showing additional content
- Slideshow or slider that cycles between several images or text paragraphs
- Tooltip or similar text that displays additional content when users interact with over an element
- Text that's only accessible to screen readers and is intended to improve the experience for those using screen readers
Keyword stuffing refers to the practice of filling a web page with keywords or numbers in an attempt to manipulate rankings in Google Search results. Often these keywords appear in a list or group, unnaturally, or out of context. Examples of keyword stuffing include:
- Lists of phone numbers without substantial added value
- Blocks of text that list cities and regions that a web page is trying to rank for
- Repeating the same words or phrases so often that it sounds unnatural. For example:
Unlimited app store credit. There are so many sites that claim to offer app store credit for $0 but they're all fake and always mess up with users looking for unlimited app store credits. You can get limitless credits for app store right here on this website. Visit our unlimited app store credit page and get it today!
Google uses links as an important factor in determining the relevancy of web pages. Any links that are intended to manipulate rankings in Google Search results may be considered link spam. This includes any behavior that manipulates links to your site or outgoing links from your site. The following are examples of link spam:
- Buying or selling links for ranking purposes. This includes:
- Exchanging money for links, or posts that contain links
- Exchanging goods or services for links
- Sending someone a product in exchange for them writing about it and including a link
- Excessive link exchanges ("Link to me and I'll link to you") or partner pages exclusively for the sake of cross-linking
- Using automated programs or services to create links to your site
- Requiring a link as part of a Terms of Service, contract, or similar arrangement without allowing a third-party content owner the choice of qualifying the outbound link
- Text advertisements or text links that don't block ranking credit
- Advertorials or native advertising where payment is received for articles that include links that pass ranking credit, or links with optimized anchor text in articles, guest posts, or press releases distributed on other sites. For example:
There are many wedding rings on the market. If you want to have a wedding, you will have to pick the best ring. You will also need to buy flowers and a wedding dress.
- Low-quality directory or bookmark site links
- Keyword-rich, hidden, or low-quality links embedded in widgets that are distributed across various sites
- Widely distributed links in the footers or templates of various sites
- Forum comments with optimized links in the post or signature, for example:
Thanks, that's great info!
paul's pizza san diego pizza best pizza san diego
Google does understand that buying and selling links is a normal part of the economy of the web for advertising and sponsorship purposes. It's not a violation of our policies to have such links as long as they are qualified with a rel="nofollow" or rel="sponsored" attribute value to the
Machine-generated traffic consumes resources and interferes with our ability to best serve users. Examples of automated traffic include:
- Sending automated queries to Google
- Scraping results for rank-checking purposes or other types of automated access to Google Search conducted without express permission
Such activities violate our spam policies and the Google Terms of Service.
Malware and malicious behaviors
Google checks websites to see whether they host malware or unwanted software that negatively affects the user experience.
Malware is any software or mobile application specifically designed to harm a computer, a mobile device, the software it's running, or its users. Malware exhibits malicious behavior that can include installing software without user consent and installing harmful software such as viruses. Site owners sometimes don't realize that their downloadable files are considered malware, so these binaries might be hosted inadvertently.
Unwanted software is an executable file or mobile application that engages in behavior that is deceptive, unexpected, or that negatively affects the user's browsing or computing experience. Examples include software that switches your homepage or other browser settings to ones you don't want, or apps that leak private and personal information without proper disclosure.
Site owners should make sure they don't violate the Unwanted Software Policy and follow our guidelines.
Site owners should create websites with high quality content and useful functionality that benefits users. However, some site owners intend to manipulate search ranking by intentionally creating sites with misleading functionality and services that trick users into thinking they would be able to access some content or services but in reality can not. Examples of misleading functionality include:
- A site with a fake generator that claims to provide app store credit but doesn't actually provide the credit
- A site that claims to provide certain functionality (for example, PDF merge, countdown timer, online dictionary service), but intentionally leads users to deceptive ads rather than providing the claimed services
Some site owners base their sites around content taken ("scraped") from other, often more reputable sites. Scraped content, even from high quality sources, without additional useful services or content provided by your site may not provide added value to users. It may also constitute copyright infringement. A site may also be demoted if a significant number of valid legal removal requests have been received. Examples of abusive scraping include:
- Sites that copy and republish content from other sites without adding any original content or value, or even citing the original source
- Sites that copy content from other sites, modify it only slightly (for example, by substituting synonyms or using automated techniques), and republish it
- Sites that reproduce content feeds from other sites without providing some type of unique benefit to the user
- Sites dedicated to embedding or compiling content, such as videos, images, or other media from other sites, without substantial added value to the user
Redirecting is the act of sending a visitor to a different URL than the one they initially requested. Sneaky redirecting is doing this maliciously in order to either show users and search engines different content or show users unexpected content that does not fulfill their original needs. Examples of sneaky redirects include:
- Showing search engines one type of content while redirecting users to something significantly different
- Showing desktop users a normal page while redirecting mobile users to a completely different spam domain
While sneaky redirection is a type of spam, there are many legitimate, non-spam reasons to redirect one URL to another. Examples of legitimate redirects include:
- Moving your site to a new address
- Consolidating several pages into one
- Redirecting users to an internal page once they are logged in
When examining if a redirect is sneaky, consider whether or not the redirect is intended to deceive either the users or search engines. Learn more about how to appropriately employ redirects on your site.
Spammy automatically-generated content
Automatically generated (or "auto-generated") content is content that's been generated programmatically without producing anything original or adding sufficient value; instead, it's been generated for the primary purpose of manipulating search rankings and not helping users. Examples of spammy auto-generated content include:
- Text that makes no sense to the reader but contains search keywords
- Text translated by an automated tool without human review or curation before publishing
- Text generated through automated processes without regard for quality or user experience
- Text generated using automated synonymizing, paraphrasing, or obfuscation techniques
- Text generated from scraping feeds or search results
- Stitching or combining content from different web pages without adding sufficient value
If you're hosting such content on your site, you can use these methods to exclude them from Search.
Thin affiliate pages
Thin affiliate pages are pages with product affiliate links on which the product descriptions and reviews are copied directly from the original merchant without any original content or added value.
Affiliate pages can be considered thin if they are a part of a program that distributes its content across a network of affiliates without providing additional value. These sites often appear to be cookie-cutter sites or templates with the same or similar content replicated within the same site or across multiple domains or languages. If a Search results page returned several of these sites, all with the same content, thin affiliate pages would create a frustrating user experience.
Not every site that participates in an affiliate program is a thin affiliate. Good affiliate sites add value by offering meaningful content or features. Examples of good affiliate pages include offering additional information about price, original product reviews, rigorous testing and ratings, navigation of products or categories, and product comparisons.
User-generated spam is spammy content added to a site by users through a channel intended for user content. Often site owners are unaware of the spammy content. Examples of spammy user-generated content include:
- Spammy accounts on hosting services that anyone can register for
- Spammy posts on forum threads
- Comment spam on blogs
- Spammy files uploaded to file hosting platforms
Here are several tips on how to prevent abuse of your site's public areas. Here are our tips on fixing hacked sites and avoiding being hacked.
Other behaviors that can lead to demotion or removal
When we receive a high volume of valid copyright removal requests involving a given site, we are able to use that as a quality signal and demote other content from the site in our results. This way, if there is other infringing content, users are less likely to encounter it versus the original content. We apply similar demotion signals to other classes of complaints, including complaints about counterfeit goods and court-ordered removals.
Online harassment removals
Google has policies that allow the removal of certain types of content if it violates our policies involving personal information, such as non-consensual explicit images, doxxing content, or content hosted by sites with exploitative removal practices.
If we process a high volume of these removals involving a particular site, we use that as a quality signal and demote other content from the site in our results. We also look to see if the same pattern of behavior is happening with other sites in relation to people's names and, if so, apply demotions to content on those sites.
Once someone has requested a removal from one site with predatory practices, we will automatically apply ranking protections to help prevent content from other similar low quality sites from appearing in Google Search results for people's names.
Scam and fraud
Scam and fraud come in many forms, including but not limited to impersonating an official business or service through imposter sites, intentionally displaying false information about a business or service, or otherwise attracting users to a site on false pretenses. Using automated systems, Google seeks to identify pages with scammy or fraudulent content and prevent them from showing up in Google Search results. Examples of online scams and fraud include:
- Impersonating a well-known business or service provider to trick users into paying money to the wrong party
- Creating deceptive sites pretending to provide official customer support on behalf of a legitimate business or provide fake contact information of such business
Is Web scraping Google allowed? ›
It also imposes limitations on its own API, only allowing a maximum of 10,000 requests per day. From Google's perspective, web scraping is a ToS violation and a bad move overall. Still, Google isn't known to sue for scraping its content.Does Google penalize for keyword stuffing? ›
To help higher quality content rank better, Google search penalizes sites that it detects are keyword stuffing, and may remove your page from its results altogether.What is Web spam in SEO? ›
SEO spam, also known as spamdexing, is an attempt to use your website to rank content that won't rank otherwise. This is a black hat SEO technique. Hackers use it to generate revenue but in the process, they spam & destroy your website.What is scraping content? ›
Content scraping, or web scraping, refers to when a bot downloads much or all of the content on a website, regardless of the website owner's wishes. Content scraping is a form of data scraping. It is basically always carried out by automated bots.How can I tell if a website is scraping? ›
In order to check whether the website supports web scraping, you should append “/robots. txt” to the end of the URL of the website you are targeting. In such a case, you have to check on that special site dedicated to web scraping. Always be aware of copyright and read up on fair use.Is crawling a website illegal? ›
If you're doing web crawling for your own purposes, it is legal as it falls under fair use doctrine. The complications start if you want to use scraped data for others, especially commercial purposes.Why is cloaking not recommended by Google? ›
Cloaking is considered a violation of Google's Webmaster Guidelines because it provides human visitors with different results. A website must provide content to search engine spiders or bots (the google search crawler), in order to improve its search engine rankings for specific keywords.How many keywords is too many? ›
How many keywords are too many? The ideal keyword density preferred by both readers and search engines is around two to five percent. Even in longer pieces, the best practice is not to exceed 20 uses per webpage.How do I stop Google Penalties? ›
- Don't Buy Links.
- Keyword Stuffing.
- Having Shallow Content Depth.
- Non-Unique Content or Copyright Infringing.
- Including Ads That Make it Difficult for Visitors to Navigate or are Top Heavy.
- Never Hide Content.
- Show You are a Trusted, Legitimate Business.
- Update your software and plugins. ...
- Sanitize input fields. ...
- Use a CAPTCHA. ...
- Keep track of backlink profiles. ...
- Install a web application firewall (WAF) to prevent spammy comments.
What types of content can be considered to be spam in web search? ›
Any links that are intended to manipulate rankings in Google Search results may be considered link spam. This includes any behavior that manipulates links to your site or outgoing links from your site. The following are examples of link spam: Buying or selling links for ranking purposes.How do I find spam websites? ›
- 1 | Carefully Look at the Address Bar and URL. ...
- 2 | Check the Contact Page. ...
- 3 | Review the Company's Social Media Presence. ...
- 4 | Double Check the Domain Name. ...
- 5 | Look Up the Domain Age. ...
- 6 | Watch for Poor Grammar and Spelling. ...
It is a copy-paste or copied version of the original content. Often accidental or unintentional plagiarism occurs when, without proper acknowledgment, the content creator use outside sources for creating their content. Plagiarism of all sorts is considered to be stealing content.How do you know if a website is stealing your information? ›
Check the TLS certificate
Look at the URL of the website. If it begins with “https” instead of “http,” it means the site is secured using an TLS/SSL certificate (the s in https stands for secure). TLS certificates secure all of your data as it is passed from your browser to the website's server.
Web scraping is the process of using bots to extract content and data from a website. Unlike screen scraping, which only copies pixels displayed onscreen, web scraping extracts underlying HTML code and, with it, data stored in a database. The scraper can then replicate entire website content elsewhere.How do you web scrape without getting caught? ›
- IP Rotation. ...
- Set a Real User Agent. ...
- Set Other Request Headers. ...
- Set Random Intervals In Between Your Requests. ...
- Set a Referrer. ...
- Use a Headless Browser. ...
- Avoid Honeypot Traps. ...
- Detect Website Changes.
- Toscrape. Toscrape is a web scraping sandbox, ideal for both beginners and advanced scrapers. ...
- Scrapethissite. Another great sandbox for learning web scraping, Scrapethissite, strongly resembles Toscrape. ...
- 3. Yahoo! Finance. ...
- Wikipedia. ...
Many websites on the web do not have any anti-scraping mechanism but some of the websites do block scrapers because they do not believe in open data access. But if you are building web scrapers for your project or a company then you must follow these 10 tips before even starting to scrape any website.Is HTML scraping legal? ›
Web scraping and crawling aren't illegal by themselves. After all, you could scrape or crawl your own website, without a hitch. Startups love it because it's a cheap and powerful way to gather data without the need for partnerships.What is an Internet spider? ›
A web crawler, crawler or web spider, is a computer program that's used to search and automatically index website content and other information over the internet. These programs, or bots, are most commonly used to create entries for a search engine index.
Is web scraping with Python legal? ›
Scraping for personal purposes is usually OK, even if it is copyrighted information, as it could fall under the fair use provision of the intellectual property legislation. However, sharing data for which you don't hold the right to share is illegal.What is highly frowned upon by Google? ›
Google Hates A Site Full of Ads
However, if it's difficult to separate the ads from the content and if the ads are intrusive enough to provide what Google considers a “bad experience” for the user, your search rankings will falter.
Black hat SEO is a practice against search engine guidelines, used to get a site ranking higher in search results. These unethical tactics don't solve for the searcher and often end in a penalty from search engines. Black hat techniques include keyword stuffing, cloaking, and using private link networks.Does Hidden Text affect SEO? ›
This invisible text lurks in the background, in the website structure or design, and can negatively or positively impact your SEO. Essentially, hidden text is included in and analyzed by search engines, so you can see why it might be used to optimize a website and rank higher in search results.How many key words is good for SEO? ›
It's easier for pages to rank if they focus on one topic, so you should focus on two or three primary keywords per page that are reworded variations. Targeting four or more keywords is difficult because there is limited space in the title and meta description tags to target them.Which keywords should I use for SEO? ›
The best keywords for your SEO strategy will take into account relevance, authority, and volume. You want to find highly searched keywords that you can reasonably compete for based on: The level of competition you're up against. Your ability to produce content that exceeds in quality what's currently ranking.Should I use the same keywords on every page? ›
Having the same keyword targeted on multiple pages of a website doesn't make a search engine thinks your site is more relevant for that term. When multiple web pages seem to be too similar, it can actually send out negative signals.What is Google penalty in SEO? ›
A Google penalty is a punishment against a website whose content conflicts with the marketing practices enforced by Google. This penalty can come as a result of an update to Google's ranking algorithm, or a manual review that suggests a web page used "black hat" SEO tactics.What is a Google manual penalty? ›
A manual penalty, unlike an automated penalty, is issued by a human reviewer at Google. The penalty is applied after the reviewer determines the site is not in compliance with Google's guidelines. Traditionally, a manual penalty results in pages or sites being ranked lower in Google Search.How you can save your site from algorithm penalty? ›
Submitting request for reconsideration
As algorithms keep updating, your site will be re-evaluated and then it could regain its position and traffic, once the penalty is revoked.
Is it possible to scrape Google reviews? ›
Can you scrape Google reviews? Yes. You can scrape all the reviews from Google Maps by using Google Maps reviews scraper.How do I scrape a Google search? ›
- How do you scrape Google SERP? ...
- Go to Google Search Results Scraper. ...
- Insert the keyword you want to scrape. ...
- Set up country domain and language of search. ...
- Collect your data from Google search. ...
- View and download your data.
- Step 0: Download and Install Google Play Scraper Package. pip install google-play-scraper.
- Step 1: Import required packages. ...
- Step 2: Find the App Id in Google Play Store. ...
- Step 3: Scrape the Reviews. ...
- Step 4: Put the Reviews into Pandas DataFrame.
- Step 1: Start With A Fresh Google Sheet. First, we open a new, blank Google Sheets document:
- Step 2: Add The Content You Need To Scrape. Add the URL of the page (or pages) we want to scrape the information from. ...
- Step 3: Find The XPath. ...
- Step 4: Extract The Data Into Google Sheets.
- List all reviews.
- Get a specific review.
- Get reviews from multiple locations.
- Reply to a review.
- Delete a review reply.
In order to have access to more than 5 reviews with the Google API you have to purchase Premium data Access from Google. That premium plan will grant you access to all sorts of additional data points you have to shell out a pretty penny.Can you export Google reviews to excel? ›
3 way: Export Google Reviews to CSV
- You register in the service and create your account.
- Add your Google Business account details there.
- Choose the option Download reviews in . csv format.
- Download and save your . csv file.
Web scraping is the process of using bots to extract content and data from a website. Unlike screen scraping, which only copies pixels displayed onscreen, web scraping extracts underlying HTML code and, with it, data stored in a database. The scraper can then replicate entire website content elsewhere.What is result scraping? ›
Website scraping is a way to extract or copy data from a web page. Like the 'view source' option in a browser, your script visits the website and copies the HTML. Most server-side languages can screen scrape and work with the results by parsing them into meaningful data.How does Python read Google search results? ›
- import requests import urllib import pandas as pd from requests_html import HTML from requests_html import HTMLSession.
- def get_source(url): """Return the source code for the provided URL. ...
- def get_results(query): query = urllib.
How do you web scrape a Google review in Python? ›
- You will need python3+ and this python package. ...
- Get your API key from the Profile page.
- Import the package and initialize it with the key.
- Specify the location by providing a link, place Id, or name. ...
- Wait a few seconds till the reviews will be fetched.
💬 Get Google-Reviews with PHP
How to get the needed Google Places API Key: use: https://developers.google.com/maps/documentation/places/web-service/get-api-key. and follow the easy explaned steps.
Did you know that you can pull data from websites into your Google spreadsheet, automatically? There is an incredibly useful function in Google Sheets called IMPORTXML, which you can use to retrieve data from web pages, where that data is pulled into a Google spreadsheet on an automated basis.How do you scrape data from a website? ›
- Inspect the website HTML that you want to crawl.
- Access URL of the website using code and download all the HTML contents on the page.
- Format the downloaded content into a readable format.
- Extract out useful information and save it into a structured format.
- Step one: Prepare the Google Spreadsheet data. Make a copy of the Google Spreadsheet data here. ...
- Step two: Create a new Google Apps Script project. ...
- Step three: Setting up the project. ...
- Step four: Add the code snippets. ...
- Step five: Deployment.