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What is Black-Hat SEO

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by | Mar 7, 2022 | Digital Marketing

Black-Hat SEO can kill your search rankings!

Before we get into that whole “Black-Magic-Witch-Crafty-Spell-on-Google” stuff- let me explain what SEO is, in case you’re wondering what those three letters even stand for. SEO is an abbreviation for Search Engine Optimization, which is the improvement of your webpage’s visibility when users search for relevant keywords. SEO is like an onion, with a ton of different layers to it, but there are a few core factors that make up the majority of it.

Black Hat SEO is like getting a speeding ticket in the world of Marketing. It’s disapproved of, and if you get caught enough times, your website will be in some serious trouble, since most of the time it ends in a search engine ban. Yeah, that means you’’ go from a top ranker to totally black-listed.

On the other hand, White Hat SEO stands for any sort of SEO effort that is approved as genuine by Google, and other search engines. Typically, most marketers won’t say “White Hat SEO,” they will just use the term “SEO” and trust that you understand they’re acting in the best interest of your website, and engaging in good SEO practices.

What Not To Do

To avoid this deadly marketing sin- it is recommended you avoid these practices:

  • Content Automation – using scripts or software to automatically generate and publish content without any thought or work from you.
  • Doorway Pages – this is a unique form of cloaking
  • Hidden Text or Links – For example, you can’t add a bunch of text and keywords that uses white text on a white background so that it is invisible to the user, but readable to search engines.
  • Keyword Stuffing – aka, stuffing irrelevant terms/keywords to try and rank for them. This creates a bad user experience as well.
  • Reporting a Competitor (or Negative SEO)
  • Sneaky Redirects – For example, you cannot publish a blog post about “Why Corgies are the Best Dog,” and then redirect it to your product page in a bait and switch effort.
  • Cloaking – This is when you show one version of a URL to search engine for ranking purposes, while showing another version to website visitors.
  • Link Schemes – these can come in many forms: paid links, blog comment spam, forum spam, etc. These always come across as spammy, and reduce your authority score.
  • Link Manipulation (including buying links)
  • Article Spinning – this is a writing technique that deceitfully appears to be new content that is unique compared to what content already exists on your site.
  • Link Farms, Link Wheels, or Link Networks
  • Rich Snippet Markup Spam
  • Automated Queries to Google
  • Creating pages, subdomains, or domains with duplicate content
  • Pages with malicious behavior, such as phishing, viruses, trojans, and other malware

The search engine algorithms are smart- and you can’t so easily pull a fast one on them anymore. With proper keyword research, quality content, and a good SEO strategy, you can avoid all these black hat SEO tactics, and organically rank higher on search results. If you’re trying to build a long-term, reputable business- then steer clear from Black- Hat SEO.

Need Help? That’s Why We’re Here!

If you’re struggling to get your business to rank higher on search engines, reach out to us for a free consultation. SEO results don’t happen overnight, but most of our clients see improvement within six months, and it pays off for years and years to come. Our SEO experts track everything and communicate the success of your SEO campaign through monthly and quarterly reports. We have 18 years of SEO experience, make the process easy to understand, and ensure the latest strategies to keep up with the continually changing algorithms used by popular search engines.