At Care Net’s national conference taking place this week in Orlando, the president of the crisis pregnancy center network, Melinda Delahoyde, expressed her excitement about recent anti-abortion efforts that target women who are searching for the word “abortion” on the Internet.
Delahoyde followed up former Planned Parenthood employee-turned anti-abortion advocate Abby Johnson’s keynote address by saying she was “absolutely right” about the need for crisis pregnancy centers to target women who go to Planned Parenthood clinics. Among the strategies she thinks would help the anti-abortion movement to achieve this goal is the work being done to appeal to women searching for the word “abortion” on the Internet.
Anti-abortion groups such as Heroic Media and Online for Life have worked to reach women seeking information about abortion online. The groups have begun buying Google ad space in the hopes of misdirecting women looking for information on abortions.
According to reporting by The American Independent, this strategy actually “violates Google policy”:
Heroic Media’s latest strategy involves manipulating Google search results by buying ads and filling them with abortion-related keywords that direct abortion-seekers to Option Line, a crisis pregnancy hotline founded by Care Net and Heartbeat International, the nation’s two largest networks of crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs). In March, Majella Cares, which parents Heroic Media and sister organization Life Always, registered the URL www.freepreghelpline.com, which is a single-page site that essentially serves as what’s known as a “landing page” or “doorway page,” and what Google defines as “large sets of poor-quality pages where each page is optimized for a specific keyword or phrase … written to rank for a particular phrase and then funnel users to a single destination.”
As stated, the intention of the landing page is to funnel Internet users searching for “abortion” to Option Line, but the new strategy appears to violate Google’s policy. The search engine’s webmaster guidelines explicitly state that doorway pages are a violation of policy because they are considered manipulative and deceptive.
Care Net’s president says this a great new innovation for the organization.
“We are reaching out to women online,” Delahoyde told a room of CPC advocates.
She said she is concerned that CPCs are not doing all they could to appeal to “abortion-minded” women the way Planned Parenthood is.
Crisis pregnancy centers, also known as CPCs, typically assist women who are facing unplanned and sometimes unwanted pregnancies. The centers mainly aim to persuade women to not have an abortion. Care Net, in particular, has some affiliates in Florida and distributes brochures in state-funded CPCs in the state.
Delahoyde explained that even the busiest CPCs were only seeing about 5 percent of “abortion-minded women.”
“We are on the front lines now,” she said. “What is most important is to reach these women. … NARAL gets this [and] we are their No. 1 target.”