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Doorway Page


A doorway page is also known as a gateway page and describes an SEO-optimized page that is usually not visible to users. They serve as a bridge via an automatic redirect to another page within the website. These doorway pages are then filled with keyword stuffing and other measures in order to achieve the highest possible search engine rankings. This practice is rarely used nowadays because Google robots quickly recognize and penalize such measures. However, it is important for your own SEO to be aware of this term in order to avoid it on your own website.

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Where do doorway pages come from?

In the past, doorway pages were used to make it easier for Google to index pages written with JavaScript. Text written within Javascript was usually more difficult for Google to read and was therefore difficult to index. For this reason, doorway pages could be created with HTML code. These were intended to display the same content as on the Javascript page, only better readable for the Google robots. However, this tactic was quickly abused in order to mislead the algorithm and thus achieve better rankings. As a result, at some point, the pages to which users were redirected were hardly related to the search query that the user had made. Understandably, this is not pleasing for users. As a search engine, Google always strives to provide them with the best possible experience and is now taking drastic action against this.

A doorway page has the following characteristics:

  • is not visible to the user
  • few design elements
  • a certain keyword occurs very frequently
  • there is a redirect to another page
  • usually contains links to other pages of the website


A shoe company that sells shoes of all kinds wants to improve its search engine results. To achieve this goal, the company uses doorway pages. They use their main page to sell shoes and create numerous doorway pages for sports shoes, leather shoes, boots, sneakers, etc. Each of these doorway pages is stuffed with the respective keyword in order to have the best possible chances in the rankings. There are only a few design elements on these pages, and they are mostly filled with text only. For example, as soon as the user searches for boots and clicks on such a result, they are automatically redirected to the main page for shoes. Here, the user will only find imprecise solutions to their search query.

As already mentioned, this measure would no longer be possible today, as the Google robots no longer accept keyword stuffing and would penalize it here. If this happens on a doorway page, you have a good chance of risking a penalty.

Alternatives to the doorway page

Obviously, a doorway page is a practice that should not be pursued nowadays. For this reason, alternatives need to be considered.

Strategic pages and landing pages are particularly useful here. These allow you to offer users quality content that gives them exactly what they are looking for. This requires research and time to find out what the user is looking for and to write content accordingly. However, the work pays off in the end.

Let’s stay with our example of the shoe company that wants to improve its rankings: instead of creating numerous doorway pages that contain low-quality content stuffed with keywords and ultimately redirect to the main page, the company should focus on creating quality content. You can create quality content on your website in just a few steps:

  • Create a separate page for each category, such as leather shoes, sneakers, etc., with a list of the respective products.
  • Then concentrate on creating qualitative content
  • Use tools such as SEMrush or ahrefs to find out what questions users are asking when they make an inquiry, what content your competitors are using and which keywords are promising.
  • Create qualitative content based on these results and enrich it with additional information to offer your users a broad range of information about your category.
  • Make it descriptive on your site and use the right Hn tags, write an optimized title and a suitable meta description.

The difference here is that with strategic pages there is no redirection to another page and users are therefore not misled. If they want to, they can still click through to the main page and are not trapped in a one-way street, as is the case with doorway pages.

BMW - probably the best-known example

When the word doorway pages is mentioned, the name BMW immediately rings a bell for many SEO professionals. In 2006, the car manufacturer was heavily penalized for the use of doorway pages. The search engine Google deleted the website from its index due to measures that violated its guidelines. For a short time, it could no longer be found on Google. As a good deterrent, many website owners took this warning to heart and removed their doorway pages.

The most popular definitions

alias page
google amp page
doorway page
orphan page
satellite page
zombie page
pagination in SEO
Google indexing

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