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What is black hat SEO and white hat SEO? If you are a big fan of movies, chances are you have noticed how the villains in old titles always wore in black, while heroes wore in white.

Today marketers also choose their SEO strategies based on the hat color they wear, particularly when it comes to increasing traffic via links. Like these movie characters, they must choose between black hat and white hat SEO and black hat SEO techniques to enhance their efforts in content marketing.

Each tactic has its pros and cons, and this guide will give you a comprehensive comparison between them so that you can determine which one is suitable for your goals. Firstly, let’s get started with the most common question people often have: what is black hat SEO and white hat SEO?

What is a black hat SEO strategy? 

What is Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO, Lady in black hat like the villains, marketers who use black hat SEO tactics are often considered as the outlaws on the Internet as they practice rule-breaking strategies to get higher rankings.

In other words, black hat SEO includes the use of aggressive techniques and tactics which only focus on search engines rather than human audiences. This strategy is often used by those people who want to get a quick financial return on their sites instead of a long-term investment.

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Some common techniques in black hat SEO

– Link farms

A link farm is a group of sites which hyperlink to other sites in that group. Even though a few link farms could be created manually, most of them are produced with the help of automated services and programs. Many search engines often considered this technique as a type of spamming their index.

– Cloaking

This is a deceptive technique in which you will present search engines and visitors entirely different content. The primary purpose is to trick the search engines so that they would show a URL when it wouldn’t otherwise be shown.

– Doorway pages

Doorway pages are essentially websites which are stuffed with particular keywords to make it easier for the search engines to rank. However, the primary goal of this technique is to send visitors to another page when they click on the keyword.

– Invisible links or texts

Another standard technique in black hat SEO is to hide links or texts within the content to improve your site’s rankings. Some methods to achieve this include adjusting the font sizes to zero, adding white texts on white backgrounds, or embedding links in small characters.

What is a white hat SEO technique?

What is Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO, Lady in white hat on the beach

White hat SEO strategies take advantages of those tactics and techniques which aren’t contrary to the general rules of search engines. In other words, it is considered as ethical SEO. That’s why most of the successful companies and brands go for white hat SEO tactics in their search efforts as these focus on organic link building and quality content to making your sites more visible.

Common techniques in white hat SEO strategies

– Quality content

The most popular and effective technique in white hat SEO strategies is to create valuable and unique content for a group of target audience. This is both link-worthy and share-worthy – 2 essential factors in driving more traffic to a website. To achieve the best results, your content should be relevant to your business, original, and not contain no grammar or spelling errors.

– Effective uses of the keyword

Though keyword stuffing can be a red flag, using keyword still holds value when you know how to take advantage of it. Generally, your website should focus on a group of relevant keywords. Remember that a single word can’t be the most effective one. Most search engines prefer long-tail keywords that are more specific to a service and product.

– Relevant backlinks

Search engine algorithms like to see links which lead back to your website as they can serve as votes of confidence. This means if other websites are linked to yours, it proves that your content is high-quality and deserves a high ranking on search results. However, keep in mind that there will be bad and good links, so make sure these off-site links come with relevant and similar quality content.

What is Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO: Conclusion

By now, you’ve learned what is black hat SEO and white hat SEO. But how would you know which tactics are better for your business in the long run? While black hat and white hat SEO techniques share a common goal to enhance the visibility of an online site, they might use very different tactics.

Black hat SEO strategies are incredibly risky to conduct and are often identified sooner or later. Search engines like Google change the algorithms frequently so that they can detect those rule-breaking techniques implemented by black hat marketers. For example, the Florida algorithm is created to penalize keyword stuffing, while the Panda algorithm is used to detect content farms.

Once they find out these rule breakers, Google will penalize or even take down your site. If you notice a sudden reduction in traffic or limited presence of your websites in the search results, these can be the signs of a penalty. More seriously, your sites would be excluded or banned permanently from search results. This could mark the end of your business it kills organic traffics so that nobody can find your company online.

If you want to be successful in the long run, white hat SEO strategies might be a better choice simply because these are following the rules of the search engine. This means you can avoid those devastating effects from penalties, drop in traffic, or even shut down.

Even though these techniques might take longer and cost more money to see expected results, they would improve the search performance of your online business via organic links and high-quality content, which are highly recommended by search engines like Google.

After reading this guide, I believe that you now can understand what is black hat SEO and white hat SEO to make the right decision to increase the ranking of your site on search engines.