The Internet is a constantly changing universe. What works today may be obsolete in the next few days. In marketing your business online, you will be acquainted with different tools and strategies to help with your enterprise’s progress. It becomes difficult to determine which one is best suited for your goals and which one you can go by not using.
Do not be overwhelmed by the number of methods and tools that are available. One of the trusted marketing methods that still work is search engine optimization (SEO). Despite being around for a long time now, it is also improving. If your goal is to mobilize your marketing efforts with the help of a digital marketing agency in Toronto or anywhere in Canada, it’s best to be acquainted with white hat and black hat SEO techniques.
What Is White Hat SEO?
White hat SEO is a technique that is considered most ideal since it complies with the quality guidelines of search engines. Your website will gain positive ratings through organic link building. Natural link building is generated by uploading useful content.
Your SEO team will include the following techniques in your campaign:
- As content is deemed king for SEO, one of the reliable strategies applied in white hat techniques is creating valuable and high-quality content that adds value to your website.
- To generate contents that suit what your audience is looking for, they must have the right keywords. Your SEO team will conduct keyword research using different online tools to determine the right ones to include in your campaigns.
- Another characteristic of white hat SEO is building natural links. Social media strategies are mostly used to generate these links.
- OnPage optimization is used, where metadata, synonyms, and page navigation are restructured to accommodate trends and keywords needed to rank.
What Is Black Hat SEO?
Black hat SEO is the opposite of white hat. The practice is also aimed at increasing the ranking of websites on search engines but by violating most of the terms of service. It is used by others to describe people who use different unethical techniques like hacking, virus creation, and others.
Most SEO companies in Vancouver and Toronto will not use or even recommend this technique. The practice goes against the terms of search engines that will result in sites being banned. Involved are the following activities:
- Content automation
- Hidden links or texts
- Doorway pages
- Keyword stuffing
- Link farms
- Snippet markup spam
- Duplicate content
Should You Use Black Hat SEO?
Black hat SEO can harm websites and brands. These are possible consequences that you need to consider:
- It leads to lower search rankings and can lead to the disappearance of websites from search results. The techniques used in black hat go against the terms of service of search engines so they penalize and ban sites once they detect such activities.
- The results will come easy and go away just as quickly because black hat strategies work around the loopholes. Once these loopholes are fixed, the efforts you exerted will also be gone. Search engines can flag your website once your activity is detected.
- The audience’s experience is also greatly affected. Many black hat tactics create a poor experience, which turn off users. The tactic also makes the brand look spammy, which makes it easier for visitors to abandon.
Black hat is not advisable because of the very short-term positive results and long-term negative effects. On the other hand, you can divert your efforts towards white hat SEO, which is known for these advantages:
- White hat cements your website’s place in search engine results
The top goal of SEO strategies is to lead websites to the top spot of Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) once a user makes an inquiry. The higher the spot your website secures, the greater exposure you get and the more chances that you get organic traffic to your site.
While black hat hacks into the algorithm of SERPs, white hat focuses on the ethical aspects of ranking. Unlike the former, you will have to wait for a few weeks or months before significant changes in the ranking can be observed.
The good thing about this though is that your site will not easily get affected when there are changes in the search engine algorithms. You may slowly climb your way up but it cements your reputation in search engine results.
It is a good way to build networks with other users
One of the techniques of white hat SEO is link building. Here, your goal is to create content that other websites may want to cite and link to their own content.
Think of it as working on a research paper’s review of related studies and literature.
The content creator needs to find information, published studies, and other works that tackle similar topics. For these works not to be flagged for plagiarism, the researcher needs to properly cite the works.
The main focus is linking. Readers can find hyperlinked texts that, when clicked, will lead them to the published work. Both sites win as they can potentially reach a wider audience.
For the search engine, this is interpreted as bonus points that will convince them of the authority and credibility of the contents being published by the website. As a result, they will rank the site better and are less likely to be affected by algorithm changes.
It convinces Google that you’re the good guy
White hat saves you time and money
Listening to black hat campaigners may convince you that quick results mean greater gain. This is wrong. White hat techniques cannot promise fast results but considering that you are following the rules, you have a stronger foundation.
You do not have to reconstruct your pages and site when algorithm updates happen. Your site remains intact so there is no need to hire another team to redo the affected pages.
Your website ranking is healthy and steady
Your website’s ranking progress is not drastic and erratic. White hat is less risky so you will always yield stable results. It will take time but working on stable ranking progress will yield long-term benefits.
Your website’s reputation remains intact
Unlike the earlier days, when the only way to rank is by stuffing keywords and hacking algorithms, search engines today are becoming more sophisticated and are more focused on enhancing the user experience. Cracking on websites that violate their rules on a constant basis can lead to getting banned. Those who follow the rules gain brownie points to the public and to search engines.
Search engine optimization makes it easier for users and websites to meet. A user looking for rotary screw air compressors, for example, will just look up online using these words and a list of websites selling and explaining this product will show up. Because of its crucial role in bridging that gap, marketers employ different techniques to get ahead of the game.
Black hat SEO can deliver quick ranking improvements but it is not recommended by many. Aside from the ethical concerns, the results may not last very long as search engines can flag the anomalies and affect the website ranking or totally ban the sites.
White hat SEO is considered the wiser choice for marketing campaigns as the techniques employed are more trustworthy. The only drawback is that its results are not easily noticeable.