Search engine optimization has grown into an incredibly important online marketing strategy over the last few years, and with good reason: it can be one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your website from the search engines. The bad news? Some of these practices are considered Black Hat SEO techniques and can have serious negative effects on your search engine rankings.
Battle between White Hat and Black Hat SEO
In the world of SEO, there are two schools of thought. White Hat SEO follows the rules set forth by Google and other search engines, while Black Hat SEO tries to find ways to game the system. Optimization and positioning is a long-term process, not a one-time action. In most cases, you need to wait a few months for its effects and put in a lot of work. Not every website owner can agree with it, thus trying to shorten this time.
What techniques are not allowed?
These techniques are not allowed because they go against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, which state that you should make pages primarily for users, not for search engines. The most frequently abused practices include:
- keyword stuffing;
- creating doorway pages;
- creating low-quality pages;
- hiding text;
- using farm links;
What are the consequences of implementing unethical techniques?
One of the main consequences of implementing Black Hat SEO techniques is getting hit with Google penalties. This can result in a decrease in traffic and rankings, and in some cases, your site may even be removed from Google’s search results entirely. Other consequences can include getting banned from Google Adsense or other advertising platforms, and losing the trust of your audience.
How does Google detect fraudulent tactics? With the help of algorithms. They are designed to search, analyze and evaluate web pages included in the Google index. So here it enters:
- Panda – deals with searching for low-quality content that brings nothing to users;
- Penguin – searches for spam and evaluates the linking profile by finding unnatural links;
- Pirate – lowers the ranking position of sites that infringe the copyright;
- Google Intrusive Interstitials Mobile Penalty – detects pages with intrusive, full-screen ads that make it difficult to use the content on the site;
- Page Layout – lowers the ranking position of pages that in the Above the Fold field have an extra number of ads and unusable items.
Penalties are imposed by two methods. They can be imposed manually by a Google employee from the Search Quality Team department (we are informed about it in the Google Search Console admin panel, receiving the what to do instruction) or automatically by the algorithm (in this case we do not receive any information or an auxiliary package, and what can give us a signal about its imposition, there are drastic drops in website traffic or in search ranking).
Oops, I didn’t mean to
However, we cannot measure them all with the same measure. It happens that some administrators unknowingly use illegal practices. This is often due to ignorance or haste. Unfortunately, Google does not offer a reduced fare. So it’s worth doing an Wales SEO audit to find out what condition your website is currently in.
Working with experts
As you may have guessed, the best way to avoid penalties and Black Hat SEO techniques is to work with a good agency. A company who has an understanding of what it takes to rank well on Google will know how to help you avoid these pitfalls. Not only will you surround yourself with security, highly qualified specialists with access to the best programs, but you will also be sure of ranking success. So, there’s no time to waste – search the net for the best Glasgow SEO agency.
Is there something in between? Gray Hat SEO
Gray hat SEO is a combination of both Black and White Hat techniques. While it may be more effective than white hat techniques, it can still result in penalties from search engines. To avoid this, make sure you research what techniques are considered Gray Hat before using them. If you want to try something new, ask someone who knows the field better than you do. Remember that if Google determines that your site is performing suspiciously well in their SERPs for certain keywords, they will penalize your site by lowering its ranking for those terms.
If you want your website and business to succeed, avoid using Black Hat SEO techniques. These techniques may help you rank higher in the short term, but they will ultimately damage your reputation and website. Use White Hat SEO techniques instead to build a strong foundation for your online presence.