There are many techniques that can be used to improve a website’s ranking on search engine result pages. The choice of technique determines whether the type of search engine optimization is White Hat SEO or Black Hat SEO. Both of these types will give you results, but one is more likely to attract penalties from search engines than the other. It is crucial for website owners to understand these two types of SEO so that when choosing any of them they are aware of what to expect and the risk they are taking.
Frank Abagnale, the Customer Success Manager of Semalt Digital Services, explains here the difference between these two SEO techniques.
White Hat SEO uses techniques that target human audience as opposed to search engines. They are designed to generate organic traffic to the site and quality (of the site and it content) is of great importance. These techniques and strategies are preferred for long-term improvement of the website’s ranking and thus the business.
White Hat SEO techniques include securing high-quality inbound links, the creation of original and attractive content, proper keyword use, and great site organization. Highly involving campaigns are used to generate traffic for the site but the results are long-lasting.
Black Hat SEO involves the use of techniques aimed at taking advantage of weaknesses in search engine algorithms to get higher search rankings. The techniques do not pay focus to the human audience and often break search engine rules. Black Hat SEO is considered unethical by search engines. Using these techniques, therefore, puts the site at a risk of penalization by these engines, and the penalty can be as fierce as being banned from a search engine. This type of SEO is normally used by individuals who want to get a quick return on the website instead of growing the site gradually and steadily.
Some Black hat SEO techniques include keyword stuffing, content automation, cloaking, doorway pages, and invisible links or text
In practice, SEO professionals work in a gray area where the techniques used are neither explicitly White hat SEO or Black hat SEO. This has led to the birth of another type of SEO called Grey hat SEO. If used well by an experienced professional, it can be effective. The techniques used include purchasing old domains, duplicating content, cloaking, buying links and automating social media. Grey hat SEO can gain some traffic at first, but this rarely lasts because the site eventually gets caught out.
The issue of Grey hat SEO is quite contentious since it’s legal but ethically dubious. Some people argue that Grey SEO doesn’t exist as it’s just Black hat SEO in a less obvious form. Grey hat SEO may come with affordable pricing but the techniques used are questionable. Usually, SEO providers use these techniques to achieve the target (higher site ranking) but at a lower cost and using less time.
What’s your priority: quick and cheap but unpredictable search rankings or slow but real, long-term growth of the site and business? Is the risk of using Black hat techniques worth taking? These are some of the questions a site owner needs to ask himself before settling on a technique or SEO type. A reliable SEO services provider should help you answer these questions. With knowledge about the types of SEO, you can make informed decisions about your site and business to avoid making expensive mistakes.