As most of you will know, SEO is massive in this day and age. In order to get that all-desired first-page position in the search engines, work needs to be undertaken to help your website move up and up. If you are new to SEO, you would have probably heard the terms “white hat” and “black hat” being thrown around. If you are still unsure what they really mean you have come to the right place!
Black hat SEO refers to attempts to improve search engine rankings in ways that deceive search engines and go against their guidelines. White hat SEO refers to use of ethical methods to achieve a good search engine ranking that complies with search engine guidelines.
Here is a handy little chart to help you understand the differences between white hat and black hat SEO.
|Black Hat SEO
|White Hat SEO
|Techniques used to get higher search rankings in an unethical manner
|Conforms to search engine designs and involves no deception
|Disapproved by search engines
|Approved by search engines
|Site is eventually banned, de-indexed or penalized through lower rankings
|Results last a long time
|Black hat SEO techniques include keyword stuffing, doorway and cloaked pages, link farming, hidden texts and links, blog comment spam.
|White hat SEO techniques include research, analysis, re-write meta tags to be more relevant, content improvement and web redesign.
As previously mentioned, black hat techniques will usually go against search engines rules and regulations. Black hat SEO practices have the ability to yield quick results but there is also a higher risk of having your website banned from search engines if discovered. Black hat SEO is a short-sighted solution to the long term problem of organic search traffic.
Google puts real emhpasis on ranking websites that are created for users and not search engines. White hat SEO should not only follow all search engine guidelines, but also ensures that content indexed by search engines is the same as the content that a human user will see.
White hat SEO includes techniques such as:
Below is a great infographic we have found that sums up the different white, black and even grey hat SEO techniques: