Black Hat SEO: 10 Techniques to Avoid at All Costs

Do you know how important SEO is for your business?

Consider the fact that U.S. companies spent a total of $69 billion for SEO in 2017 alone. It’s not a luxury that you can’t ignore–it’s a necessity to ensure that you have an online presence and promote your business more.

There are a lot of ways to conduct SEO, by using keyword research tools for building a strong backlink profile. However, whatever you do, you should stay away from black hat SEO. These are techniques that break all search engines’ terms of service and protocol.

Not sure what counts as black hat techniques? Uncertain if you’re doing the right or wrong strategy? Here’s a quick look at some of the worst black hat SEO methods you should avoid:

1. Keyword Stuffing

In the past, ranking higher in the search engine results means filling up your page with a certain keyword and match your domain with it. However, Google put a stop on this practice by catching those SEO websites that use keyword stuffing and punishing them. If an SEO company offers you to do this, find a better one since this technique isn’t fruitful and can only make your rankings drop.

2. Cloaking

Out of all the black hat SEO tricks out there, cloaking is the most prevalent one used to fool Google. It inserts a script within the website that’s similar to the content in the search engines results page but has no actual relevance to users. It’s a good means of luring peoples to websites that displayed ads and unwanted content.

3. Private Blog Networks

Also known as PBNs, it’s a collection of private blogs that an individual or groups of individuals own. It’s built with a specific purpose in mind, but the most common is to transfer link to the websites they want to promote. The content found in these networks is often low-quality, spammed content that Google has yet to filter out completely, making it a trendy black hat technique.

4. Web 2.0

They’re sort of like PBN’s except for the fact that it’s the inferior version. It’s often created with the use of free web properties such as WordPress, meaning it doesn’t need a server. No matter how it’s created, its common trait with PBNs is that it lacks quality content and it’s easier for Google to detect as a result.

5. Link Buying

Before the algorithm shift, a lot of black hat operators connect an almost limitless number of links to their website. When this worked, it actually helped make their website get to the top of the search engine page ranking. But with Google making the change from quantity to quality, you now need to get more relevant links instead of getting lots of irrelevant links for your website.

The algorithm is so strict that at times, you still get penalized if you gain too many relevant links within a short period of time. As for the technique itself, the links provided are often harmful to your website, making it something you should avoid at all costs.

6. Click Baiting

With social media having a wide reach, click-baiting remains as one of the most popular technique. With more than 68% of U.S. adults using Facebook on a regular basis, it’s easy for this technique to reach a wide audience. All they need to do is to use false information as well as shocking images and over-the-top headlines meant to catch attention.

Most of these don’t contain any useful information in them. It serves no purpose other than to get more clicks.

7. Domain Redirection

This technique uses expired domains that have good authority. It’s often relevant to the keywords most people search for. But the caveat is that once the user gets to the domain, they get redirected to the website that needs the promotion.

While 301 redirections aren’t illegal, Google will soon find ways to penalize it. It’s better to stop practicing it as soon as possible to avoid a future hit in rankings.

8. Page Switching

This technique involves taking a top-ranked page and changing its content. It first aims for search terms that have significant search volume. Once they achieve the necessary ranking in search engines they’ll replace the content with the ones they need to promote and market.

It does give a lot of boost in terms of traffic and ranking. Remember, it doesn’t last long since search engines will soon find out the switched content.

9. Spun Content

Those who can’t make genuine content will often turn to content spinning. There are a lot of tools out there that let you spin other people’s content and use it on your website. These tools let you use the same content but with different sentence orders coupled with synonyms of certain words.

Most of these tools produce subpar content that looks unnatural. With this, your webpage quality diminishes, making it harder for your website to get higher rankings. The damage it inflicts is indirect, but it’s still real.

10. Duplicate Content

This technique outright steals other websites’ content and pasting it for your personal use.

This is one of the worst black hat methods–so bad that most people consider it a waste of time. Search engines will know you duplicated other sites’ content and will thus remove it without hesitation.

At some point in the past, it would have worked without problems. In present times, the technique is pointless and it only serves to harm your website.

Avoid Black Hat SEO Today!

If you’re a business that aims to make their online presence grow and last, you need to avoid as much black hat SEO as you can.

Its benefits are temporary but its drawbacks might permanently destroy your website’s chances of gaining traction. Google improves their algorithm so it’s only a matter of time before they deal with any illegitimate methods that aim to make websites gain rank.

Do you need help with white hat SEO? Contact us today and we’ll help you get your website rank higher in a legitimate manner.