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  1. #11
    Member Since
    Jun 2012
    Ottawa, Canada
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    Re: is this an example of spam and doorway pages ? They have dozens of these yet ran

    You can argue any way you wish but ultimately what matters is what Google says about the debate. Their algorithms, their search results, so their definition trumps any other definition.

    Using the same content with just a change of location name is both duplicate content and a doorway page, according to my interpretation of what Google has said about both over the years.

    You may not like their rules, but if you don't play by their rules you lose.

    And really, if you look at it from the end user's point of view (as opposed to the webmaster's point of view), I'd have to say that in most cases Google's position on this issue is the correct one.

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  4. #12
    Member Since
    Feb 2014
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    Re: is this an example of spam and doorway pages ? They have dozens of these yet ran

    DJ, you are absolutely right. It is up to each individuals interpretation. And ultimately, it is Google's interpretation of their rules that really matters.

    As you can see I have been a member for years and just recently posted. And I totally get this is an ultra white hat forum.

    I have been building local sites with targeted city pages for years with no repercussion. This includes city specific, targeting cities in an entire county, region and state wide.

    I get not wanting to take a risk with a clients site. If I was still working with local clients I would have no problems building city based pages.

    However, as I mentioned in an earlier post, if you don't want to risk your clients site getting penalized, clone it, rewrite the content and add city specific pages. Worst case scenario is that particular site gets penalized or de-indexed and there is no risk to your clients site.

    I guess the only reason why I responded to this was for two reasons. I disagree with almost everyone saying these are doorway pages and secondly, the idea of tattle tailing on someone, specifically a local business, because you "think" they are breaking the rules or TOS is just crappy.

    If they are breaking the rules or TOS, they will get dealt with by Googles algorithm.

    With that being said, I have turned in people for fake GMB listings as that is a very clear violation of TOS and in each of those cases, they were not a local business, not even in the same state.

    The other thing to keep in mind with city specific pages is that not all businesses can afford PPC. I can't when it is $20 to $30 a click and I am competing against huge national companies. City specific pages are the only affordable way for me to get in front of those people looking for my service.

    I will say this. You will be pleasantly surprised if you add city specific pages for your clients services and products and they will love the new business they get from them.

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  6. #13
    Member Since
    Sep 2012
    Nashville, TN
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    Re: is this an example of spam and doorway pages ? They have dozens of these yet ran

    Quote Originally Posted by mrmatt View Post
    What does Google mean by "funnel?" My interpretation of that is redirects, overlays or the user must click on a link or button on the page they land on which directs them to another page.

    Why does a page need to be "unique" to enhance their experience?

    If someone lands on city page A for a service or product, why does it need to be unique from city page B?

    It doesn't, at least from the stand point of the user looking for a local service or product. If you are making unique pages for each city, you are doing that solely for the search engines, not for the user.

    The user is generally looking for a product / service in city A, they don't care about city B and they won't read or visit that page. And even if they did, the only thing you are going to do is re-write the content so it is unique. It is going to say the same thing as every other page only in a different way.

    Creating unique content for each city for the user is a monumental waste of time.

    "Now, Green Hills is a locale inside of Nashville. I think creating a page for serving Green Hills would technically be a Doorway Page. Because if you serve Nashville, you serve Green Hills. The page doesn't serve a function that they couldn't have gotten somewhere else from your website."

    I think is could be argued either way as to whether it is a doorway page or not.

    My personal opinion is that it is not.

    The page doesn't serve a function that they couldn't have gotten somewhere else from your website.

    That may be true. However, if they are not searching for Nashville and are using Green Hills to find the product or service; would they have even found the page that could have served them that information?

    Maybe, maybe not.

    "My guess is that they look for copied content and maybe even similar page styles, or maybe a combination of both."

    I can tell you from my own experience that it is neither of those things.
    When it comes to Google, it's not about "what should be done" or "how it should be" but "how it is".

    I actually agree with a lot of your points. I don't think it necessarily provides a better user experience to have unique content on different landing pages. However, from Google's point of view, local is a small (and I would argue ignored) microcosm of their overall goal in search quality.

    In local, do we need unique content per service area to provide value to the searcher? No. I agree with you. However, most copied content doesn't provide a better user experience. Local is the exception, not the rule, and therefore gets caught up in the exception.

    From this vantage point, unique content is important. Not because it "should be". But simply from the fact that "it is what it is".

    Edit: DJ beat me to this and I missed his post before I wrote this one. I basically just regurgitated everything he said haha.
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  8. #14
    Member Since
    Oct 2015
    Atlanta, GA
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    Re: is this an example of spam and doorway pages ? They have dozens of these yet ran

    Quote Originally Posted by mrmatt View Post
    As far as reporting them to Google. Why would you do that to a local business?

    That is a crappy way to deal with a competitor. Unless they are truly doing something wrong and it's not your "OPINION" they are doing something wrong i.e. fake GMB listing.

    Reporting spammers and violators evens the playing field. I do it at every chance I can. Its a great way to win the SEO race. It then becomes up to Google to decide if something is spam or not and debate ends.

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