We are in the process of designing a new website and are wondering if this is the best method to approach from Google's perspective (wanting of course to avoid any punishments for Google believing we are trying to 'cheat' the system)

Say for arguments sake we have a template page with text like so

ABC Co supplies {product name} into a large range of industries such as mining, oil and gas. ABC's {product name} is a superior quality aftermarket alternative... etc

Say for instance the template was assigned to template.aspx and {product-name} came from url parameter, for instance template.aspx?product=Caterpillar

If we then were to add links on our site to a number of parameterised url's such as template.aspx?product=Caterpillar template.aspx?product=Cummins template.aspx?product=Mack template.aspx?product=Detroit

what would Google's indexing view be for these pages, and would there be any penalties?

The main reason we are doing it this way is because there are thousands of variations that we want people to be able to search for.

  • You want to search this board, or google, for "meta canonical tag". – Rob Dec 12 '16 at 0:37
  • What you are proposing is perfectly normal, however, generally you are heading down a dangerous path if you are not careful. It is about the page returned and not the parameters. Each page must be unique and contain a sufficient amount of content. It is far better to use a path such as /caterpillar or /cummins or even /product/caterpillar or /product/cummins and not parameters if you can. The reason is simple, path weights much stronger in search than parameters. Cheers!! – closetnoc Dec 12 '16 at 2:53

It is against the Google webmaster guidelines to copy pages and change the keywords. They call this practice doorway pages.

Such pages are not likely to be able to satisfy users because they do not have enough specific information about each product. Those pages only purpose would be give Google a page to rank for they keywords.

Google will penalize sites that do not adhere to the webmaster guidelines. Because of doorway pages, Google could remove your site from all search results.

Having a page for each product is fine as long as you have something specific to say about that product. Having a section on the page that is filled in with a template as you suggest would be fine. Such a section can't be the only content on the page.

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  • Thanks Stephen that is exactly what I was wanting to know. Thanks a lot! – Brendan Gooden Dec 13 '16 at 22:57

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