White Hat SEO Techniques vs Black Hat SEO?

“What is with all of these colored hat techniques that keep popping up on articles?”, you may think. Each nomenclature labels the type of SEO procedure that is implemented in a campaign. Many times, they are differentiated by method in which site is optimized to receive more organic traffic. Contrary to what is commonly understood, there is no “good” or “bad” technique. SEO is judged by how it aligns with a search engine’s guidelines.

Before We Go Further, What is White Hat?

Whitehat is the nomenclature for an SEO process where it caters to improve a website’s user interface for a human audience while staying in line with a search engine’s rules. For example, Google, being the flagship platform for search, has made it a rule against keyword “stuffing” on a website (filling the site’s content with an unnatural number of keywords {see our Homepage to learn what keywords are}. By the way, tactics like these are going to be explained in greater detail in the next paragraph. Anyhow, when a website is caught, it is deindexed. In short, Google makes sure that the site does not appear on its platform at all. Nowadays, this scenario tends to make or break a business.

On the other hand, doing optimization procedures such as image optimization or SEO copywriting, you are doing white hat optimization. Specialists that earn backlinks from high-quality without asking for one or by exchanging value like a written article are within Google’s guidelines. It should be mentioned that those three solutions within online digital marketing have one thing in common that allows them to be in the proper category of search engine optimization. As mentioned earlier, they all improve the human audience’s user experience while helping search engines better understand what the digital platformentails; in addition, there is no breach of the search engine rules.

Unfortunately, no one technically achieves practicing SEO from a purely white hat basis. Experts who would categorize themselves as such would still be going against search engine webmaster guidelines by earning links (even when exchanging value for it). Next Level Metro will elaborate in the gray hat section.

There are too many rules, even when you are just going over Google, to lay out in this article. On the other hand, if you feel that you feel insecure that the SEO provider may have breached the rules, search engines will warn way in advance before taking it down. For example, Google will warn way in advance if your online platform breaches any rules. Sign up & enter your Google Search Console (previously known as Google Webmaster Tools) account to see greater details.

From One Side of the Spectrum to the Other, What is Black Hat SEO?

As was described earlier with a technique called keyword “stuffing,”, we would delve into this topic as this SEO strategy is rampant. It is not realistic for a digital marketing professional to be entirely blackhat as vital steps like setting up a digital business listing is within the bounds of a search engine’s guidelines. Purposefully or accidentally, these set of procedures are about catering to the search engines indexing a site as opposed to a human user. It also involves working around a search engine’s rules. Buying links for a site is one way to categorize yourself as a “black hat.” This technique is NOT bad. Another tactic is “cloaking” where a site shows different content to what the search engine bots are reading when indexing. Many digital marketers & business owners construe it with hacking or a method that only creating SPAM. It just DOES NOT abide by all of the search engine’s terms and conditions directed towards websites on its platform. Rest assured, we at Next Level Metro try our best to be as white hat in our SEO process as possible.

What if Your SEO Tactics Do Not Involve Either?

Gray Hat SEO

As alluded earlier, there is no such thing as a purely white or black hat SEO professional. These are just nomenclatures that only group marketers in one camp as opposed to the other. By fulfilling an essential step of the SEO process like link building, you are going against rules such as the Webmaster Guidelines enforced by Google because those links you earn are manipulating the ranking results for a search query.

In order to not prolong organic results by many years, it is necessary to do link outreach. From that moment on, the campaign instantly ceases to be whitehat. Does it make it wrong? As answered before, no it is not technically morally wrong. This leads the SEO specialist’s campaign to be gray hat SEO. Unlike blackhats, gray hats do not flat out purchase links that do not consent in backlinking to their client’s website. They do it through ones that grant the access of being linked, or they will write quality content that qualifies them to earn links from blog posts, news articles, or how-to webpages.

Pardon My French, “Asshat SEO” is a Thing? 

Yes, there exists such a term in this niche. There are two types of so called “experts” who are “asshats.” They either can be ones who claim to be white/gray hat strategy but end up implementing crossing the line into black hat territory by purchasing spammy links that end up only manipulating the search results instead of helping the algorithm filter in boosting the most informative sites that provide the best feedback from its visitors.

To summarize, search engine optimization can be implemented in all sorts of ways. All of them are legal; however, the caveat is that ones like black hat are subjected to be negative consequences by search engines like Google. Implement it at your own discretion. To reiterate, NLM Agency commits to aiding Google in presenting the best content to its SERPs by working with businesses & affiliate websites that have the potential to only provide more value to the world via the Internet.