A bridge page is different from a doorway page. Bridge pages are set up solely to fool the search engines, by cramming keywords into a single page. This page is just a “bridge” between a search engine (in many cases, it will be targeted at a single search engine) and the rest of your site. When a visitor clicks on the link from a search engine, they come to the bridge page, and then (you hope) they click through to your site.

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In the past, it was possible to use a special META tag, called a “refresh” tag, to automatically redirect visitors from the bridge page to the site. Nowadays, search engines will not index pages with refresh tags, to prevent such tactics. In response to this, many web site operators use a “bait and switch” strategy, where they create a bridge page, submit it to the search engines, then replace it with another page as soon as it’s been indexed. This allows them to get high rankings for a page loaded with keywords, then replace it with the page they want visitors to see. Another reason for pulling this “bait and switch” strategy is to prevent other sites from “ripping off” the META tags and content from a high-ranking page ? by changing the tags out as soon as the page is indexed, you ensure that anyone who tries to copy your META tags will get the phony version.

In our opinion, creating and submitting doorway pages is just common sense. All of the doorway pages we submit are highly focused portals, through which all of our site’s relevant content is available. There’s no reason you shouldn’t do the same thing. We don’t use any bridge pages, though, because it just doesn’t seem honest to us. They’re just another trick to fool the search engines. As they say, your mileage may vary ? if you are desperate for high rankings, a bridge page may be the only way to pull it off.