No one can deny the importance of SEO in this technological era. While some business owners try to do SEO on their own, majority of them hire a SEO professional or SEO company. If you plan to hire an expert for search engine optimization, you need to fully evaluate and monitor that what kind of strategies they are following. In most of the cases, professionals either use white hat or unethical SEO practices. Look out for the companies that use unethical practices because in long run they will damage your business to its core.
What is White hat SEO?
In simple terms, white hat SEO is the ethical way of optimizing your website. To make it more specific, white hat SEO fulfills these 3 criteria internet optimizer.
1. Follows Googles guidelines
Google has laid out a set of guidelines to follow for optimizing a website. These guidelines can be summed up in simply three words “Don’t be deceptive”. So if you are not corrupting Googles algorithms or manipulating rankings that means your using white hat approach.
2. Focus on target audience
The main goal of Google is to provide best possible experience for its users. Hence the right way to do SEO is to create a wonderful experience for audiences. Creating high quality content, increasing the page loading speed, adding high quality images they all make a user’s experience wonderful. Good user experience will lead to a trustable relationship.
3. Takes time
The SEO is a long-term approach and it doesn’t happen over night. If you’re doing everything right from following Googles guidelines to creating an amazing user experience, you will need time and patience to see the desired output. Results may come late but they will be sustainable.
What is black hat SEO?
As the name indicates black hat SEO is complete opposite of white hat SEO. It involves all the unethical practices to boost your ranking.
The black hat SEO fulfills these 3 criteria.
1.Googles guidelines violation
It doesn’t follow any of the guidelines mentioned by Google. In fact they opt for the practices that are strictly prohibited by Google.
2. Dependence on manipulative tactics
Black hat SEO use deceptive tactics to manipulate Google’s algorithm in order to give boost to rankings. They don’t work on creating a friendly user experience rather manipulates users for their self-interest.
3. Focuses on short cuts
While white hat SEO is building strategies that show long lasting results over time, black hat focuses on short-term results.
Common unethical SEO tactics
Here are the few common unethical SEO practices that should be known and avoided.
Keywords are the main pillar to improve a websites ranking. So what some companies do is that they excessively put keywords in the content and then change the font color to match the background hence making it completely invisible for readers. In this way they were able to temporarily increase the ranking through excessive keywords placement. But now Google is completely aware of these tactics and they have formulated strategies to detect these invisible keywords.
Another unethical technique adopted by SEO companies is cloaking. They use two different HTML addresses for the same website. One is designed for the visitors and other one is meant for Googles bot. When visitors open HTML link for a particular search query, it will lead them to a completely unrelated page. Hence it not only totally throws users off but also completely violates Googles guideline of having quality interaction with users. This is not what Google wants therefore it penalizes every website that takes such unethical measure.
Google emphasizes on creating a unique and informative content for users that adds value to their experience. However some web developers try to look for short cuts and copy paste other people’s work just to drive traffic to their website. This plagiarism is highly unacceptable by Google. You just can’t steal someone’s hard work and take credit for it.
While some web developers steal others content as it is, others find manipulative ways to avoid plagiarism. They don’t copy paste others contents rather re-word or re-phrase it to make their own so-called “original” content. When you spin text in such manner, it results in meaningless content.
Businesses need backlinks to drive audiences to their website. So some companies use fraudulent links to direct users to their website. These links are known as farm links. Google now keeps track of these links and penalizes heavily for using them.
Keep yourself informed about these unethical tactics