White Hat SEO vs Black Hat SEO vs Grey Hat SEO
We are going to cover the difference between White Hat SEO, Black Hat SEO and Grey Hat SEO in below points in this guide:
- What is White Hat SEO?
- What is Black Hat SEO?
- What is Grey Hat SEO?
- Examples of all these 3 types of SEO
- What are Bad and Good Practices?
- Guidelines Set by Google
- The risks of using Black Hat or Grey Hat Tactics
What is White Hat SEO?
White Hat SEO refers to the ethical ways approved by the search engines to optimize a site. Let us further know it in bit detail –
-It follows search engine guidelines
Generally, widely accepted and known techniques that follow Google’s Webmaster Guidelines are White Hat SEO techniques. Ethical SEO techniques specifically mean the techniques which are not manipulative. If one is not intending to manipulate rankings or tamper with other algorithms of Google, one is likely to follow its guidelines & thus practicing White Hat SEO techniques.
-Visitor’s – A priority
Visitor’s and their requirements form the topmost priority while using the search engine like Google. White hat SEO techniques, therefore, includes making necessary changes that are beneficial to a site’s visitors. These include techniques such as publishing high-quality content, easy navigation, faster loading time thereby improving the value that users get from a site.
– It takes a long-term approach
When one decides to follow the strategies laid down by Google’s guidelines for generating a positive user experience and get good leads such processes take a long time than any general black hat SEO technique. But to note on the brighter side, these white hat SEO techniques have a much more lasting impact.
What is Black Hat SEO?
Black Hat SEO is said to be the exact opposite of white hat SEO. Black hat optimization refers to a set of methods or practices that are used to increase a site or page rank in search engines through means that violate the search engines’ policy/terms of service.
– It does not adhere to search engine guidelines
Black hat SEO might not be illegal but it does violate certain guidelines laid down by the search engines. It’s against the rules.
-It depends on manipulative tactics
Unlike white hat SEO which involves looking for ways to improvise user experience, the black hat SEO technique depends on manipulating Google’s algorithm to ascend in its rankings.
-It focuses on “quick wins”
Black Hat SEO Techniques are generally good for a short run but as they are involved in manipulating with Google’s algorithm, they might not work for a long run and hence your SEO ranking might be affected as well. For some quick wins, one must not forego the guidelines as there’s always a risk of getting penalized.
What is Grey Hat SEO?
White hat SEO techniques include strategies approved by search engines like Google, whereas techniques which are banned and practising which can lead to Search engine’s penalty are black hat SEO practices.
Grey hat SEO is a combination of both types of strategies – white hat SEO and black hat SEO. One can use Grey Hat SEO Techniques to accelerate the white hat SEO process.
Examples of Black Hat SEO, White Hat SEO, Grey Hat SEO
Following are the examples of various types of SEO techniques –
Examples of black hat SEO include:
- Keyword stuffing, white text with white background is an example of keyword stuffing
- Plagiarism; copying content from competitors’ site or from anywhere
- Backlinks, purchasing links to get SE rankings in return of free stuff
- Doorway pages, multiple similar pages with a slightly different content
- Cloaking, Content shown to users/visitors is different from content shown to search engines
Examples of white hat SEO include:
- Writing unique, meaningful & relevant content that helps the audience find what they are searching for.
- Organising content so that visitors search becomes easier & faster
- Regularly promoting content and links on social media to get exposure and leads
Examples of Grey hat SEO include:
- Use of clickbait, to attract visitors attention and encourage them to click on a link to a particular web page while not delivering value or desired result
- Paying for reviews or feedback
- Spun, reusing slightly altered content
What are Bad and Good Practices?
When working on SEO (Search Engine Optimization), there are a certain set of rules laid down by the search engines or SEO experts which determines the nature of techniques one has used. The decision solely lays with the search engines to infer whether all the set conditions are met or not to get featured. Some algorithms which are made by the search engines help to check the credibility of the sites and check whether they are abiding or manipulating the rules to achieve their desired rankings.
It is thus recommended to abide by the rules & algorithms set by the search engines to get your desired results for a longer run & save your site from being blacklisted.
Guidelines Set by Google
Google has laid down a set of guidelines for the webmasters which are used by many SEO professionals. These specify the rules and the most common forms of deceptive or manipulative behaviour if any practised by the professionals.
These guidelines have the changes & updates made by Google in its algorithm over the past years These guidelines also include a variety of activities that are mentioned like “scraped content”, “doorway pages” and “cloaking” which fall under black hat SEO practices.
The risks of using Black Hat or Grey Hat Tactics
Using black hat and grey hat SEO techniques might be favorable for a while but it surely puts a great risk in the longer run. This may include the risk of a ban on your site for some time or forever, demotion, or penalty for failing to comply with Google guidelines. Black hat SEO can return value quickly, but at a potentially high cost which might be a huge loss for the company.
FAQs on all 3 types of SEO Techniques
Q: What is White Hat Process?
Ans: In SEO (search engine optimization) terminology, white hat SEO refers to the practice of SEO strategies, techniques and tactics that focus on human audience only and follow search engines’ guidelines completely.
Q: What is a White Hat Backlink?
Ans: White hat SEO often rely on high quality and informative content, honest testimonials, contribution to blogging site, and all genuine ways to gain backlinks. These gained backlinks are called natural backlinks or white hat backlinks.
Q: What does not Describe White Hat SEO?
Ans: An SEO which refers to those techniques and strategies used to get higher search rankings and traffic by breaking search engine rules and guidelines, which only focuses on search engines.
Q: What does Black Hat mean in Marketing?
Ans: Black hat marketing is the type of online marketing that use of unethical strategies to promote online businesses which become illegal sometimes. These strategies are against the rules and use deception and manipulation to accomplish their objectives.
Q: Does Black Hat SEO still Work?
Ans: It might be, but we advice – don’t do it. On getting penalised from search engines, your website will drop down in the search results or it could be removed completely by deindexing all your webpages. Thus, your website will gain very less or no traffic. It will hurt your business’s credibility and Search Engine Optimization.
Q. Is Black Hat SEO Legal?
Ans: Black hat SEO might not be illegal but it does violate certain guidelines laid down by the search engines. It’s against the rules. Those who engage in black hat SEO would definitely get hit with a penalty as punishment.
Q. What is Black Hat and White Hat SEO?
Ans: Black hat SEO refers to a set of practices that are used to increase a site or page rank in search engines through means that violate the search engines’ policy/terms of service. While White Hat optimization is said to be the exact opposite of Black hat optimization. White hat SEO refers to all the techniques that operate under the rules and expectations set by the search engines and their users. When compared to black hat SEO techniques which increases website traffic from search engines very fast, white hat SEO is slow in operations as it works and is depended on the standards set by Google and other search engines.
Q: How do I report Blackhat to SEO?
Ans: You can remove the spammy backlinks with Google’s disavow tool to tell the Google that the low-quality sites are linking maliciously to you. You can file a complaint via Google’s webspam report. You can also report Black Hat strategy through Bing’s content removal feature.
Q: What are Black Hat SEO Techniques?
Ans: Black Hat SEO techniques are those practices that are used to increase a site or page rank in search engines through means that violate the search engines’ policy/terms of service. Some of the major black hat SEO techniques are Cloaking, Doorway Pages, Keyword Stuffing, Invisible Text, Article Spinning, Duplicate Content, Paid Links,
Sneaky Redirects, Typosquatting or URL Hijacking, Negative SEO, Content Automation, Guest Post Spam, etc.
Q: Are Grey Hat Hackers Punished?
Ans: As we all know that grey hat hacking is illegal, regardless of the purpose… So a grey hat hacker should expect to be punished by disclosing a company’s vulnerability.
Interested in Search Engine Optimization? You might be interested in below SEO related post:
On-Page SEO – The Ultimate Guide to On-Page SEO
Off-Page SEO – The Ultimate Guide to Off-Page SEO
White Hat SEO – Introduction, Important White Hat SEO Techniques, Pros of White Hat SEO
Black Hat SEO – Introduction, Common Black Hat SEO Techniques, Cons of Black Hat SEO
Grey Hat SEO – Introduction, Popular Grey Hat SEO Techniques, Pros and Cons
SEO Issues – Most Common Problems affecting a Website’s Search Engine Performance
Google Manual Penalty – 16 Big Brands Penalized by Google