Doorway Page Penalty
Google just announced that “doorway pages” will soon get a ranking adjustment, which basically means that they’ll stop showing doorway pages in search results.

What’s a Doorway Page?

Doorways pages are created solely to rank highly for specific search queries. They’re good for search engines (until now), but bad for users because:

  • they can generate multiple similar pages in search results, where each result points the user to the same destination
  • they can also lead users to pages that are useless as the final destination

How do you know if your pages are considered doorways?

According to Google, site owners should ask themselves the following questions:

  • Are you duplicating content, like products, locations, etc.) across doorway pages in an effort to get more search traffic?
  • Are the pages an integral part of your site’s user experience? Or did you build the page to rank in search results?
  • Are the pages optimized for generic keyword even though terms yet the content presented on the page is very specific?
  • Are the pages there to get affiliate traffic? Do you pass them off without creating unique value in content or functionality?
  • Do the pages exist as an “island?” Are they nearly impossible to navigate to from other parts of your site?
  • If you can navigate to the pages, are the links pointing to the pages created only for search engines?

And here are some examples of doorways straight from Google Webmaster Tools:

  • 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

Now, I’m not a PPC pro, nor do I pretend to be one. So my question is this: is a PPC landing page considered a doorway page? It’s typically an “island” page, usually doesn’t link from anywhere else in the site, and the purpose of the page is capture traffic and move them on to another page on your site. Sounds like a doorway page to me.

Any PPC experts out there willing to chime in on this?