Do you know the types of SEO techniques you are employing? Since most professionals have an opinion on what works and what doesn’t in search engine optimization, it can be challenging to know where to begin. Although utilising black hat SEO strategies may give you quick results, they won’t necessarily position you for a successful future.
Understanding the differences between white-hat and black-hat SEO Your long-term SEO objectives can be helped by SEO and the areas in between. Let’s examine each of this headgear in more detail so you can decide how you want to rate yourself:
White Hat SEO: The Golden Child of Google
White Hat SEO is essentially carrying out search engine optimization as Google desires. It is adhering to Google’s recommendations and establishing a long-term strategy that will resist any Google upgrade.
To summarise, let’s look at how Google would like everyone to improve their websites.
High-Quality Content Created for the User
High-quality content should be your top priority if you are actively using SEO. Why? Because no matter what else you do, you will only rank well if you have content that people want to read and share.
It also forms the basis of white-hat SEO, which emphasises content quality above black-hat SEO. In Google’s perfect scenario, your material would be fantastic, follow all Google guidelines, and receive much reading and sharing. This is basically how white hat SEO works.
White hat SEO is no longer applicable if you aren’t producing quality material, are writing for search engines, and don’t care what your readers see.
The user experience fits into this category as well. It only makes for a positive user experience if your content is easy to read (let’s assume the user is on a mobile device and your content needs to be formatted for mobile use) or takes an eternity to load, lowering quality results. Additionally, it will reduce your chances of appearing higher in search results.
Knowing the search terms your visitors are using and incorporating them into your content is acceptable, but it may soon deteriorate into keyword stuffing, which is unethical SEO.
We advise you to conduct keyword research to determine what people are searching for before creating content that addresses those issues.
Facilitate Google’s Understanding of Your Website
Now, is fantastic material sufficient? No! You will experience ranking troubles if Google has trouble accessing your website (remember that Google is a bot that reads code; it does not see what we see).
Make sure your site is indexable, Google can correctly crawl your site, and you have a decent sitemap with all your vital pages. You can do this by using your robot.txt file to specify which areas you want Google to crawl and which ones you don’t.
Utilising Google Search Console to upload your sitemap and check for issues with site crawling is a great idea.
Additionally, it would help if you kept the importance of effective internal linking on your website. The menu should list important pages and provide links between pages. This relates to user experience—frustrating it when a website is challenging to navigate—but it also aids Google in determining which pages are crucial and which aren’t.
SEMrush’s Site Audit Tool explores all the many website mistakes you may have that could harm your rankings. It’s critical to periodically monitor your website to make sure there are no new concerns.
White SEO vs. Black Hat SEO: Trying to Trick Google
Google makes it fairly obvious what you shouldn’t do and has wise advice. It is a good rule of thumb if you feel at ease explaining what you have done to a Google employee.
Black hat SEO, in contrast to white hat SEO, involves breaching all the regulations. And yes, depending on your method, it might work at first, but it is more of a short-term tactic. Google adjusts its algorithm pretty frequently, so if you are acting in a way you know will lead to trouble in the future, it probably will!
Most of the black hat strategies I’ll discuss are no longer effective, and using them will reduce your chances of ranking. However, knowing what to avoid doing is sometimes useful, so let’s go over them.
Don’t imagine that by having the text of some words match the website’s backdrop, you can fool Google. This once functioned in the distant past. Although the writing was unsightly and awkward, Google could read it and would rank the pages. However, Google instantly understood.
Cloaking is the term used to describe websites where the HTML that appears to visitors and the HTML that appears to the Google bot are different. It worked for a while since certain websites needed to display their content to search engines.
Steal Content – This may appear as duplicate content. Do not assume that you are the first person to have ever thought, “Oh, if I publish this on my site, then my site will rank, too!” after reading a fantastic article. In school, we were taught that plagiarising is terrible. In any case, Google will find you right away. This is why getting original content is so crucial!
Automatic Article Spinning: “Okay, what if I don’t steal the content but only change the words to synonyms, making most of the new content unique?” For a while, people would spin articles—automatic word changes—using software to produce original content, submit it, and watch it rise in search engine results. Similar terms and meanings would be present, and websites with a lot of “fresh” content might rank better. However, the writing wasn’t excellent, the subject was highly similar to the original piece, and it didn’t offer anything new or original.
Link farms are situations in which numerous websites all have links to one another. This used to work since links indicate to Google that your content is relevant to others. However, nowadays, it is simple to be detected if your backlink profile needs to look more authentic. Additionally, it is pretty clear to Google that you are trying to trick it if the websites referring to yours have little relevance to one another.
Buying Links – This is still being sold. “Purchase X links for X bucks!” Not at all. The links could be better, and if you’re a beginner, you’re more likely to lose money than boost your ranks!
Negative SEO – This isn’t a pretty black hat tactic, but it falls under that umbrella nonetheless. Thus, you might be contemplating, “What if I purchase some unfavourable links for my rival? That will undoubtedly lower their ranking, which should benefit me, right? “. No. Once more, you are wasting your time and money and being rude.
Google initially started penalising users who had poor backlink profiles. Then some malicious individuals said, “Oh, I’ll just buy poor links for my rivals to injure them.” Now that Google usually ignores bad connections, people can disavow a link they believe is harming their rankings even if Google doesn’t.
These are the most widespread black hat strategies. Even though some of these may still work today if you know what you’re doing, they have only sometimes worked in the past, so I don’t advise trying them.
Now, the world isn’t always black and white. What about this grey area of SEO that sits in the middle?
Grey Hat SEO: A Blend of White Hat and Black Hat Techniques
Any SEO technique that isn’t necessarily in the white hat SEO region but doesn’t entirely fall into the black hat SEO area is known as a “grey hat” plan. A case study? Rewriting an article completely but adding nothing new to one that was successful. Another is a building with three or four connections. An illustration is a site A link to a site Blink to a site C link to a site A connection.
Who you are talking to can also influence what is and isn’t grey-hat SEO. I’ve heard that grey hat SEO techniques include guest blogging, and this may be due to Matt Cutts, a former Google engineer, declaring that guest blogging was dead in 2014, and it’s not.
Google doesn’t indicate that writing content for other websites harms us. Now, if you write content for a website and include many of your links, you are quickly into the grey/black hat SEO space. But publishing a guest blog containing a link to the website you work for in your profile is at the bottom of the piece, no.
Link building: Is it Grey, White, or Black Hat SEO?
Some larger businesses I’ve seen have blatantly stated, “We don’t link build!” That is fantastic, and generally speaking, if you produce excellent content, are well-known, and have top-notch on-page SEO, then links and rankings will appear on their own.
When I initially heard this, I wondered whether link building was in the realm of white-hat SEO or black-hat SEO.
Depending on how you go about it. Yes, black hat SEO applies if you participate in link farms.
Consider purchasing connections. Yes, if you are buying bulk links. What happens if you fund a non-profit and receive a link on its website? Is that a paid connection, technically? I guess so. On the other hand, it makes sense for a non-profit to wish to link to the website of a generous donor!
What if you check to see if someone mentions your brand but doesn’t link to your website using a tool like SEMrush’s Brand Monitoring feature? Is contacting them and asking, “Hey, thanks for the mention! Would you mind linking to us as well?” really that bad?
I advise newcomers to the realm of search engine optimization to go with their gut. Google will probably feel the same if it deems it inappropriate or like you attempt to trick it. And even if the algorithm doesn’t catch your cunning tactic right away, it will likely happen later.
Instead, concentrate on giving your visitors value, producing quality content, ensuring that your on-page SEO is strong, and cultivating online connections. Ensure you’re following the appropriate procedures while picking between black hat SEO and white hat SEO to ensure your site is headed in the right direction.
Small businesses like yours may improve every aspect of their search engine optimization with D’Marketing Agency assistance in order to rank better on search engines.
Wondering what we do? To find out more about our approach to search engine optimization, Contact D’Marketing Agency. When you’re ready, contact us so we can help with your SEO.