This is cloaking ->
www.tentrental.com , www.mahaffeytent.com ,
www.fabricstructure.com , www.fabricstructures.com
Nope, it isn't cloaking, it is quite likely spam but isn't cloaking.
It is mirroring sites, look at the Google cached page.
Misconceptions about what is cloaking are the reasons for the
confusion surrounding it. The content in the Google cache
seemed to be what was on the site so there was no delivery
mechanism used to give engines a different page from users.
Whether this is even spam is hard to tell. The one above seems
to have already been caught since one is grey barred for PR.
The inns site is interesting in that there is a high PR that is
exactly the same on all sites and internal pages. I decided to
look at the marketing company info and it seems to indicate
they are using domain aliasing on the DNS server. So it is very
possibly legit. Providing they submit only 1 site to SE. To quote
you "and then on each and every one of these other domains
they did nothing more than say their base is coming from
"inns.net". A clear indication of intent.
This would be consistent with domain name registration. You own
it you gotta have it on a DNS server. Some were likely purchased
for protection and some for keyword marketing. Search google
on the domain names, all I tried came up as "inns.net" and the
cached page was "inns.net".
Both keyword marketing and domain protection are legitimate so
long as they aren't used in the submission or optimization strategy.
HTTP://inns.net is a correct setting for HTTP://www.inns.net
if you do not have that resolving if the www is left out an error
occurs I believe it is a restricted entry or 404 error. Generally this
is regarded as poor domain set up.
Using technology as it was intended to be used is good, using it
to inflate relevancy or visibility is bad. So if I use DNS to display
inns.net as countryinns.com then I'm fine. But if I use a redirect
from countryinns.com to inns.net I'm running a risk because the
intent could be seen as trying to inflate visibility. Especially if
countryinns.com gets indexed. If I submit both to DMOZ there is
absolutely no question about intent you are absolutely using
domains to inflate visibility.
This is one of the problems with reporting spam and determining
"best practices" for an industry standard. A lot of it is based on
intent. Is it legitimate? That depends on whose determining
legitimacy. IMHO, too many look at the SERPs and see a lot of
pages, or a bunch of domains without regard for how it is
legitimately possible to do that. They then say engines are doing
a crappy job of preventing spam and the finger pointing begins.
I have clients doing the same thing to separate "online" from
offline advertising. I submitted only 1 to engines however,
because of links both appear in the SERPs. How can that
possibly be spam? Although most looking at the SERPs and seeing
both sites are exactly the same would. If they looked at the DNS
records they would know how it happened. That is why the
mini-site tip on using different networks is misguided. If you don't
cross link and you don't promote more than 1 in the engines then
build all the sites you want and it shouldn't be a problem. It is
spam when you use them to inflate link pop and SE visibility.
Looking at the mini-site strategy from purely a marketing
standpoint it is consistent with sound target based or direct
marketing techniques. If you look at it from an SEO point of view
it is clearly spam. Eliminate the spam using the advice above and
you may just be on to something. Don't and you're likely committing
SE suicide. Of course because you can't link to it from the site in
the SE and you can't submit it, it is impossible to do effectively
using separate domains unless of course they are sub-domains,
then you're good to go. The best of both worlds.
It is easy for a site to have literally thousands of pages indexed
by Google. I was recently looking at Froogle and was amazed at
the thoroughness of the indexing. IMHO, Google is going deeper
into ecommerce sites and product pages are seemingly better
represented then in the past. Domain and "alleged doorways"
complaints are the least understood spam techniques. They are
almost always about the numbers. Eg: 6,000 pages in the index!
this is spam. No it's not, it's called knowing what you are doing.
The tent site is clearly spam based on mirroring of content.
Believe me when I say mirroring is not about exact duplication.
These sites are examples of gross misconduct and how
they survive is both discouraging and a source of discontent for
To me it just indicates a "thick as thieves" mentality. "I won't
tattle because perhaps I'm doing something wrong myself that I
don't know about!" It confirms all the BS about all in the
industry being scammers who don't really know what they are
doing. Could it be those that report spam know how they get
results and don't have these worries or is it that they are just
individuals of "poor character" as some would have people
Google recently asked SEOs to help by reporting spam, but no,
most only complain about spam but do not lift a finger to help
even if it is adversely affecting their abilities to perform. SEOs
tolerate spammers and that just legitimizes what spammers do
consequently outsiders see all SEOs as spammers and scammers
until proven otherwise.
Once again all most do is cry about how they are getting a bad
rap! Nope no bad rap, as Mr. Bush said "you're either with us or
against us" Google should take the same attitude. I wouldn't
even be adverse to rewards for reporters of spam! Chricky, it
can't be any worse then all the reciprocal linking which is nothing
short of a conspiracy to inflate link relevancy. Truth be told 9
out of 10 wouldn't do it if there were no SE gains.