Jas R
11/16/2016

8 Black Hat SEO Techniques You Should Run Away From Now!  

Know what to look out for, and avoid. 

If you’re looking for ways to increase the search engine result rankings of your website, there is one tactic you should avoid at all costs – Black Hat SEO. Yes, I know it may be tempting when you’re desperate to increase your search engine result visibility, but believe me, it’s not worth it. Google will penalise you, and it could lead to your site being de-ranked, failing to show up in results for days or weeks, and thousands of lost traffic.

So what are some of the most common Black Hat SEO techniques you should be wary of? See below!

  1. Keyword stuffing
    Putting keywords into your copy that appear more times than what would seem natural, or adding irrelevant keywords to your alt image tags.
  2. Paid links
    This one is quite self-explanatory – people have offered to pay you to put one of their links in a piece of content. Whether you see this as advertising, Google still considers it a link scheme – which is not good. Paid link penalties also apply to paid gifts – for example, if someone gives you a gift for purchasing their links.
  3. Invisible/Hidden Text
    Essentially this is the same as keyword stuffing, only the user makes these keywords ‘invisible’ – for example, adding white text on a white background.
  4. Doorway Pages
    As their name suggests, these pages are created solely for the purpose of ranking for a keyword and then pushing visitors through to the alternative webpage. You’ll notice that the original ‘doorway’ page serves no real purpose, and has little relevant content.
  5. Scraping
    Again, this one is pretty self-explanatory and refers to stealing content or data from a competitor’s website for your own page/profit. In some cases, scraping is also used to extract email addresses and then spam those users.
  6. Link Farms
    Operating either as a single website, or a group, Link Farms exist for the sole purpose of increasing the popularity of another website. Although these pages may look pretty regular at first glance, you’ll soon notice that there is little content, and instead, a large amount of links hyperlinking to random websites.
  7. Negative SEO
    Also known as ‘reporting a competitor,’ this form of  Black Hat SEO is somewhat different in that it is usually used maliciously against a competitor, to try and hurt their rankings. A user may do this by falsely reporting you for copyright, hacking into your website and changing things around, or using link farms to point links at your site in an attempt to have you penalised. Nasty isn’t it?
    The good news however, is that Google works quite efficiently to detect negative SEO attempts. You can read more here, from seopressor.
  8. Cloaking
    A method that presents two different versions of the same website, in an attempt to boost keyword search engine ranking. For example, while a website may display Flash content to viewers, it may, on the other hand, be displaying HTML content to search engines.

Instead of the above techniques, try using White Hat Seo tactics. Unlike their darker counterpart, White Hat includes optimisation strategies and techniques that follow Google’s guidelines and focus on humans as opposed to search engines. If you believe your account has been attacked by malicious Black Hat strategies, or you see other websites following this route, file a webspam report through Google Webmaster Tools.

If you’re looking to implement these strategies, give our Get More Traffic experts a call today on 1300 332 256. We can help increase your conversions and search engine result visibility without the need for any dodgy techniques!

Recent Posts

07/08/2019

Google Swaps Voice Search On Android

What if you could have your own talking AI without needing to be a billionaire? How much easier would life be for us? And, how much harder would it be for marketers to reach you beyond your AI assistant?

These days, it looks as if AI technology is developing at a rapid pace. What’s more, it also seems that that development is getting an even stronger focus, particularly at Google.

What’s happening at Google?

Changes are happening to voice search on your Android mobile devices. What was once merely a voice-activated search engine is now evolving into AI as Google swaps out its old voice search on Android devices for Google Assistant.

This change hasn’t been rolled out on all devices yet. However, Google did announce a while back that Assistant now resides in at least one billion devices.

For those who’ve noticed the change in the home page of their android phones, the conventional blue and red mic has been swapped out. However, on Chrome for Android, the Google app, and on the Chrome browser for iOS, the mic still seems to be the predominant search tool.

How does this affect SEO and SEM?

One of the main differences between the old voice search and Google Assistant is the type of information provided. Unlike voice search, which usually only provides a list of links and search results, Google Assistant “answers” your queries directly, without needing to provide you with a list of links.

What this means is that it’s a possibility that less traffic will be coming in through mobile searches. Earlier this year, Google also began testing placing ads within the Google Assistant platform, which could mean another channel through which marketers can now source their ads. (as well as yet another revenue channel for Google).

Does this mean that even organic search is going the way of paid advertising? It’s a possibility for mobile devices, as voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Assistant continue to grow more advanced each day.

Adobe recently conducted a survey that concluded that 48% of consumers are currently using voice for “general web searches”. These, of course, don’t cover more in-depth content and research related to searches. But if AI is going to be on the forefront of development, then we can expect the number of voice searches to rise in due time, especially as Google Assistant’s set of skills are improving to the point that you can now book a ride and buy movie tickets through Assistant.

So what do we do now?

Should you start thinking about how to optimise your content for voice search? Should you start putting out audio content that users can easily consume and digest? Well, that’s one possible response for this change in organic and paid search.

Author, speaker, and known marketing expert, Seth Godin, once commented that podcasting is the new blogging. In fact, according to some of the statistics collated by podcastinsights.com, “51% (144 million) of the US population has listened to a podcast – up from 44% in 2018 (Infinite Dial 19)”. In other words, audio content is gaining ground in informational content.

Google’s John Mueller gave some tips on how to optimise for voice search, detailing what kinds of content fit and didn’t fit voice search optimisation.

One thing he recommended was to start thinking in terms of audio and voice search itself. What does your content sound like when it’s read aloud? How is your content structured and organised? How are the words on the page structured?

In other words, try to start thinking in terms of voice snippets. Think in terms of Q&A’s, and give a direct answer to any questions that potential readers may ask, and make those Q&A snippets obvious in the way your content is structured.

Remember these two things:

1. Structure your content so that it’s easy for voice search to answer queries using the information that you’ve given. Turn your titles or headers into frequently asked questions, and provide the answer in the first paragraph. 

2. Make sure that your content sounds good and cohesive when reading aloud. Try to keep things sounding conversational as much as possible. 

AI Assistants are on the rise, and it might be a good idea to start optimising your content for their eventual takeover.

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28/06/2018

Content Curation Tools For Every Skill Level

As with every piece of content that you write, the content you curate must have value. I’m sure we’ve all, at one stage, thought that there has to be an easier way to collecting links and images that may, someday, prove valuable to us. Well there is, and for each skill level, so every marketer should make use of these content curation tools because they will make your brand/business/company more trusted and reputable.

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