In the web design and SEO industry, a term known as Black Hat Tactics, is pretty alluring yet super dangerous when it comes to getting the most out of your website.
So, why you (or your SEO provider) don’t want to be lured into this evilness and how the angelic road is the higher road (and the more profitable for you).
Black Hat SEO is Spammy
As business owners, we receive soooo many emails. A new order enquiry, a customer query, a 5-star review. All very lovely emails to get. Then, at the other end of the email spectrum is SPAM. More specifically, SEO SPAM. The most common and most annoying of them all.
SEO SPAM emails are specifically designed to scare you that something is wrong with your website, then offer you a bargain basement “fix” to increase your Google ranking and online visibility.
Common attributes of SEO Spammer emails will contain one or more of the following:
- They will point out the NUMEROUS ‘faults’ and ‘failings’ of your current website.
- They will URGENTLY declare that you could be making A LOT more money from your website… If only you engage their services and ‘monetise’ ALL of your posts.
- They will offer to produce an EXTRAORDINARY number of new posts and new content for you, at an EXTREMELY low price.
- They will GUARANTEE you an extremely high Google ranking.
If you receive an email offering ‘SEO services’ that sounds anything like the above, pay close attention to those warning bells you can hear! The term ‘too good to be true’ definitely applies here.
Shady SEO Characters VS SEO Saviours
These kinds of shady operators employ what’s known in the industry as Black Hat SEO tactics. On the other hand, legitimate, responsible SEO service providers employ what’s known as White Hat SEO tactics.
The foundational difference between the dodgy, illegitimate techniques of Black Hat SEO and its professionally and ethically sound antidote White Hat SEO is that Black Hat activities focus purely on ways to “trick” search engine software and pay no heed to the human experience. On the other hand, White Hat SEO is about providing a genuine, valuable human search experience and improving search engine ranking organically.
One example of Black Hat techniques include keyword stuffing – the practice of including the identified key search terms as many times as possible without any concern for overall page readability, coherence, or relevance. Not a pleasant experience for your potential customer. It’s also considered a pretty crappy experience by the AI technology employed by the search engines responsible for analysing the relevance of your website and its eligibility to rank well.
Other Black Hat tactics include using invisible text, doorway pages, adding unrelated keywords to your content, or page swapping (changing the webpage entirely after it has been ranked by search engines).’
Bad News for Your Long-Term SEO
Black Hat SEO tactics are unequivocally bad news for your business. Search engines may initially be ‘tricked’ into ranking your site highly… BUT the crash is practically inevitable. Worse still, many search engines will ban pages or sites if they discover it’s not showing up authentically. Even if it does manage to limp along, a site full of Black Hat content won’t be an enjoyable, informative, or relevant experience for your customers. And if it doesn’t feel good for your customers, how can it be helping your business?
As mentioned, the antidote and sustainable alternative to Black Hat SEO is White Hat SEO. White Hat SEO focuses on generating content that addresses customers’ information and purchasing needs while intelligently and naturally making use of keywords and relevant links. White Hat SEO activity is the result of relevant, well crafted content that will appeal to your finely honed target audience. Major search engines like Google need their search results to be relevant to their audience.
The search engine algorithms are literally designed to analyse your website’s content and actively match searchers with your site, if it’s relevant. Far from being a big obstacle that needs to be overcome and dominated, it’s possible to start seeing search engine algorithms such as Google’s as your partner in generating high quality leads and getting your business seen where it’s most relevant and profitable.
SEO, Made Ethical
Adopting an ethical, sustainable, organic approach to SEO, starts at the foundations creating a website that not only ranks as well as it can but also targets your ideal audience so that you can convert that traffic into sales.
With our 14+ years of website optimisation experience, we support the approach of producing effective online content that is for your audience first, the search engines second!
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