So the other day, I was feeling like it was time to start hunting for a new kind of prey: the Googlebot. Googlebots can be found everywhere on the web, so it’s pretty easy to catch one. Here is how it works:
1 – The bait
First off, make sure you have a live website – let’s call it domain1.com, that is linked by at least another site appearing in the Google index. This way, The Googlebot will feel secure, and won’t suspect anything. Of course, your robots.txt needs to allow domain1.com’s indexing by Googlebot.
For an even better illusion, make sure the content of the bait webstite is rich and unique.
2 – The trap
Now, in this content, place a nicely formatted hyperlink, pointing to another domain of your own. This new domain is going to become our enclosure.
3 – The enclosure
Onthe second domain’s – domain2.com – linked page, make sure there is only one link the Googlebot can possibly follow. This link needs to point to another page of your domain2.com site. This other page will do the same, and so on.
The catch is simple, you just need to dynamically generate pages, so that the Googlebot thinks it is still exploring your website. For instance, here is what it could look like :
Each page needs to have some kind of content, that is more or less not the same.
At this point, you have successfully trapped a Googlebot!
4 – Taking care of your Googlebot
To make sure your Googlebot never dies, you need to create secondary routes, that can even link to other domains, as long as you’re able to close the loop again. The more your Googlebot travels, the longer you’ll be able to keep it alive.
Pay attention to the fact Googlebots are relatively intelligent, and if you are using URLs that are too simple, like in the above example, they could figure out they have been trapped. So you may need to be a bit clever in the URL naming :
- and so on…
5 – Playing with your Googlebot
If you are confident in your Googlebot’s education, you can tease it by placing some nofollow links pointing at popular websites on your generated pages. Doing so will ensure your Googlebots never gets bored.
If you manage to capture a Googlebot like I dit, make sure you treat it with the respect it deserves.
Disclaimer: I have probably harmed a Googlebot or two during the making of this article, sorry.