Monday, December 9, 2019

White vs. Black Hat SEO: What Is the Difference?

The SEO world has two types of practices that seek the same goals through different means — increasing organic web traffic. However, they produce quite different consequences. They are known as the White Hat and Black Hat SEO techniques.

White and Black Hat are in fact two sides of the same coin. The first one, which focuses primarily on the human audience, is slower and requires more effort and dedication. By contrast, the other one directly targets the search engines and is faster and more efficient.

The White Hat SEO
The White Hat SEO is the “honest” type of practice in search engine optimization. Also called ethical SEO, this strategy follows search engines’ rules and policies to the letter. Its primary focus is producing top-quality content beneficial to users.

However, it gives medium and long-term results only, since this practice requires a lot of perseverance and effort to reach the set objectives.

How to Practice White Hat (Ethical) SEO
Content

In the first place, a large part of the White Hat SEO strategy must revolve around content. It must be original, top-quality, unique, and novel. This is why webmasters need to update web pages assiduously and constantly.

In fact, 72% of marketers see White Hat SEO strategies which favor good and relevant content creation as the most effective. This is because they believe the practice can increase traffic by up to 2,000%, according to SEO Tribunal.

In addition, it is crucial to know how to title the articles you will post on your website or blog since the search engines give them great importance. They must be clear, descriptive, and must include relevant keywords. These keywords must also appear naturally throughout the text. Otherwise, you would be incurring Black Hat SEO.

Another significant point to remember when carrying out a White Hat SEO plan is the quantity and the quality of the links included in the article. This will provide depth and improve the positioning of the blog, as well as make other websites to link to ours.

Study Your Competitors

Another way to carry out White Hat SEO is by researching and studying the techniques used by the main competitors in your niche. If you find out, for instance, which keywords and meta tags they commonly use, it will be easier for you to improve your own SEO strategy.

The Black Hat SEO
The Black Hat SEO is the dark side of SEO. It is an unethical practice through which webmasters optimize websites by using techniques that go against the policies of search engines. In some cases, it could provide immediate results. However, note that it attracts a series of penalties by the search engines in the long run, which may push your site to the bottom of the search results.

Practices that Constitute Black Hat SEO
Keyword Stuffing

There are many possible ways to carry out Black Hat SEO. One of them includes inserting links or text across various web pages (Wikipedia references, for example), which are created using the so-called keyword stuffing. It means writing an article by using as many keywords as possible, without paying attention to its quality.

This technique was popular some 15 years ago. However, modern search engines will quickly spot such attempts and penalize sites using this type of Black Hat.

SpamdexingAnother punishable and dubious Black Hat practice involves spamming other websites through comments or social networks such as Facebook or Twitter. It has one more sophisticated and novel aspect – keyword spamming (also known as spamdexing).

This practice consists of abusing keywords by compulsively inserting them both in the content and meta descriptions. This is primarily done to raise the relevance of a site with respect to specific keywords.

Cloacking And Page Hijacking

Also, there are techniques of cloaking and page hijacking. Cloaking is the practice of optimizing content so that search engines and users see different things. This way, search engines’ robots see the optimized page, while users see worthless or spam content.

On the other hand, page hijacking is one of the vilest and punishable techniques within the dark side of SEO. This practice consists of plagiarizing an existing web page to deceive search engines and make them believe that the actual plagiarism comes from the copied website. Allegedly, this would help the fraudulent site climb to the top of the search results.

Conclusion
As in many aspects of life, sometimes the easiest paths do not end up being the best. If you are looking for successful long-term SEO results and benefits, the smartest and most profitable decision is to stick with the White Hat SEO.

References


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