|Are you unintentionally spamming search
Are you sure that your website is free of hidden text? There are many
ways to create hidden text unintentionally. By checking your web pages,
you make sure that you won't be penalized for something you did not
intend to do.
Why is hidden text a problem?
Google doesn't like hidden text and hidden links at all. Here's the
official text from Google's guidelines:
Hiding text or links in your content can cause your site to be
perceived as untrustworthy since it presents information to search
engines differently than to visitors. [...]
Hidden links are links that are intended to be crawled by Googlebot,
but are unreadable to humans. [...]
If your site is perceived to contain hidden text and links that are
deceptive in intent, your site may be removed from the Google index, and
will not appear in search results pages.
How can you hide text on your web pages?
There are many methods that allow you to hide text on your web pages:
- using white text on a white background, or the same with other
- including text behind an image
- using CSS to hide text
- setting the font size to 0 or a negative value
If you wittingly use some of these methods on your web pages, you
should make sure that you remove this hidden text as soon as possible.
Are you sure that you don't use hidden text unintentionally?
There are a few legitimate reasons to hide text on a web page. For
example, you could use CSS to replace a text link with a more pretty
Many content management systems (CMS) use the CSS "display:none"
technique to create drop-down menus or other expandable web page
elements. Although these elements are not designed to mislead web
surfers, search engines might interpret the hidden texts as a spamming
Another way to create hidden text is to provide enhancements for
visually impaired people. If a lot of text on your website can only be
seen by screen reader software and not by regular web surfers then some
search engines might misinterpret this as spamming.
How can Google discover hidden text on your web pages?
It's relatively easy for Google to find out if your website contains
hidden text. However, it's difficult to find out whether a page uses
hidden text for legitimate reasons or not.
Google's spam filters might be applied to your website if the following
- The hidden content contains keywords that are unrelated to the
rest of your content.
- The hidden text contains too many keywords. If a large part of
your web page content is hidden, your website might look suspicious.
- You overuse "legitimate" ways to hide text on your web pages.
This might flag your site for a human review.
- One of your competitors reports your site to Google because he
detected spam techniques on your site.
Google won't ban your site if you use hidden text in a way that
appears to be legitimate. They try to detect intent. Don't try to cheat
search engines. If you use ethical search engine optimization methods
then you don't risk getting banned from the search results.
Discover how the Top 10 Optimizer helps you optimize your web pages
quickly and easily to make your website get top listings on the search engines.
supplemental, Google, result, index, site, search, page,
website, engine, link, PageRank
Reproduced with permission of