What is Black Hat SEO?

Updated on: 29 November 2013


Optimizing your site for search engines is essential to stamp your presence in the online world. There are various techniques involved in search engine optimization and these techniques are classified as White hat SEO and Black hat SEO. White hat SEO gets the nod from search engines while black hat SEO is dumped as unethical practice.

Black Hat SEO – Why Is It Not Approved?

Black hat SEO involves techniques that aid in acquiring quick results, but only for the owner of the site. And temporarily too. They do not abide by the rules and regulations of search engines. Users are not benefited as the tactics involved in black hat SEO are aimed at drawing crowd but not interested in providing quality or solution to the end user. Search engines initially crawl to these sites thanks to the tactics involved but once in, they don’t take long to realize that the site has not the quality to present to viewers and finally they ban such sites.

Black Hat SEO Techniques

Given below are some of the black hat SEO techniques that are practiced by some hoping to achieve quicker results. However, as mentioned, the results are only temporary.

1) Keyword Stuffing – Too Much To Digest

The most common practice involved while writing content is stuffing keywords. Keyword stuffing refers to the practice of using keywords largely to improve the page ranking of a website. The levels to which the keywords are stuffed are so high that you tend to loathe the content as you run your eyes over it. Keywords irrelevant to the site are used and at times, they are hidden using various methods. Apart from being unethical, such keyword stuffing does no good to the readers. When a reader finds that the site has nothing to offer (except the keywords, may be), he discards the site and search engines follow suit.

2) Doorway Pages – Knocking At The Wrong Door?

Doorway page is nothing but a fake page that spams the search engines’ index to attract visitors. The page used such, offers no value to the user; it is only to redirect the user to another page. The user does not get to see the page through which he is supposed to have entered the website. Doorway pages or fake pages are created to trick the search engines and try to be ranked higher.

3) Invisible Text – Visible Results?

Using invisible text is yet another despicable method to attract search engine spiders. The keywords are listed for the search engines to see and not to readers. The content may be irrelevant to keywords and hence the reader obtains no value from reading it. Invisible text or hidden text is solely to drag search engine spiders.

4) Duplicate Content And Article Spinning

A lazy attempt to promote a website is to use content from other sources and pass it off as one’s own. It is always a good practice to give credit where it is due. Some spin articles, either manually or using spinners to give the stolen content a different treatment so that they can use the same for their site. Both duplication and article spinning are unethical and the quality of article when spun goes down. The user is thoroughly disappointed when your spun article does not address his expectations. Search engines do not encourage article spinning and hence using them can result in your site being neglected or banned.

5) Cloaking – Disgusting Disguise

Cloaking is a cheap technique that involves providing different contents to search engines and user. The keywords and titles along with the content designed for the crawlers are completely different from the original content, which is presented to the user. When detected, the site is banned by search engines.

Black hat techniques produce quicker results but they never last. The prospect of being banned for using black hat SEO practices is very bright. Hence, exercise caution when you optimize your site and ensure that you stick to the rules of the search engines. It may take time but it is the right path to online marketing success.