If you’ve ever attempted to advertise a page on Google Adwords that housed an affiliate (or even sometimes any outside) link, chances are it’s been flagged as a bridge page.
Another highly likely possibility is the explanation you’re going to get about what a bridge page actually is will change depending on which Google rep you’re talking to.
What You’re Going to Hear
Sometimes they will tell you that a bridge page is a page that has little to no value and it’s primary goal is to drive traffic to an outside source. (this was my understanding of a bridge page prior to dealing with Google)
Sometimes they’ll say anything with any outbound link is a bridge page.
Sometimes they’ll say advertisements qualify as bridge paging, and sometimes they will say advertisements are alright.
And other times, they’ll just copy and paste the same generic reply over and over until a support staff member with one of the other opinions takes over. *They can’t do that if you call them!
I’ve even had citations get flagged as bridge paging.
Oh Google, how we love you.
So what does this all boil down to?
What exactly is a bridge page?
Honestly, I don’t know anymore… I used to think I knew.. but now I just don’t have a clue.
I used to think that a bridge page was a page whose sole purpose was to drive traffic to another one, but I’ve definitely noticed a significant amount of “gray areas” in what is actually considered a bridge page by Google.
In fact, even though there is a policy, it seems that the majority of the Google reps can’t even agree on what a bridge page actually is, in my opinion.
I’ve had pages that I could have sworn would get rejected, be accepted; and I’ve had purely informational pages with a couple of citations get flagged as low-quality due to bridge paging.
I’ve had occurrences where 1 product review would get accepted, but another very similar one wouldn’t.
The most common thing you’ll be told is that your website has to have value, but the majority of the time you’ll be darn sure that it did possess value.
Here’s an example:
If your website links solely to the website of a store, but doesn’t provide any real information about the products being sold, or doesn’t give the user any real reason to be on your site, then this is a low-quality site.
However, if you provide concise reviews and comparisons of products, then your chances of being flagged for bridge paging becomes significantly lower, or so you would assume.
Like I said, I’ve had 2 very similar review pages up for an ad review at the same time, one was passed, the other was flagged as a bridge page…
If You’re Suspended…
Once you’re suspended, the only way to really get out of it is to basically ask what hoops you have to jump through, and then jump through them.
You’ll be told numerous times that you have to “fix your content” without ever getting a specific answer. But this is just the way it is with the big G.
The worst thing you could do is panic and make an irrational decision, or send an angry email. Both of these will just make things worse.
You absolutely have to smile through everything and jump through all of the hoops, or you will never advertise with Google. And not advertising on Google could be exponentially worse than a months worth of troubleshooting. Trust me.
Even if you have your whole account suspended, you can still recover from it. I’ve done it, and so can you. You just have to follow the guidelines you’re given, and hope that you get a good rep.