Back in the late 90’s/early 00’s, search engines such as Google, Yahoo, Ask Jeeves (who remembers this one??) and Excite were pretty basic, employing few techniques to filter websites by content. Many search engine optimisers at the time used what we call ‘black hat’ techniques to rank their websites at the top of SERPs (search engine result pages). Because of this Google, Bing and others have added additional filters (such as the infamous Panda and Penguin updates) to stop black hatters/spammers from getting their sites to the top of the SERPs and to make for a better experience for their users. You can keep your website safe from penalisation by employing ‘white hat’ techniques.
So what do ‘black hat’ and ‘white hat’ SEO techniques include?
Black hat techniques are generally easy and cheap to employ. These include:
White hat techniques are much harder and take more time and effort, but will pay off. These techniques include:
The primary function of search engines is to provide relevant information to the searcher, and spam is the exact opposite of this. Some of the best minds in software engineering work around-the-clock to ensure black hat SEO is penalised. Whilst black hat SEO techniques can get you to the top of the SERPs in a short amount of time, they will catch on and red flag your website, essentially deleting your website from any search results. And whilst a large percentage (a majority for a lot of websites) of traffic still comes from organic search results, good/white hat SEO practices are highly recommended and have become the standard practice of all the best search engine optimisers.
For long term success, stick with white hat techniques. Whilst they may not be as easy to implement, or yield black hat’s fast results, they will ensure that you stay on search engines’ good side. If you suspect you have been affected by black hat SEO and need help recovering from a Google penalty, get in touch with us and speak to one of our experts.
We’ll help you determine the most effective digital marketing plan for your business.