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Black Hat SEO Basics

Disclaimer: This blog posting is intended to make new and existing SEO users aware of known Black Hat techniques and does not advocate the usage of such search engine optimization strategies.

In an earlier post, I touched briefly upon White Hat SEO basics and alluded to how ethics really doesn't play a part in whatever technique is employed when using search engine optimization. To brand ethics with SEO concepts is just silly. That's like saying everyone else is breaking a moral or legal requirement for the mass acquisition of inbound traffic and prospective customers. When in fact, no US laws are being broken here unless you're using the domain for cybersquatting and you have to prove that you own the website for legitimate purposes; which still might be construed as illegal with regard to the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act.

Black Hat techniques attempt to improve rankings in ways that are disapproved of by the search engines, or involve deception. These include link buying, spamdexing, cloaking, keyword stuffing, creating doorway pages, link farming, link baiting, misrepresenting content, using hidden text to manipulate page rankings, etc.

And, there are significant penalties from using Black Hat techniques:

* Your sites get delisted from major search engines
* Your IP address gets blacklisted
* Your page rankings are significantly reduced
* Your urls become eligible for manual review prior to a search engine crawl

I'm not sure why any company with a legitimate product or services offering would consider employing BH methods to gain higher page rankings. Ignorance? Greed? It does happen, albeit infrequently, to large brand-driven companies.

Related Links:
Black Hat vs. White Hat Search Spam Debate
Google Webmaster Guide for SEO
Black Hole SEO: The Real Desert Scraping

Glossary:
Black Hat
Keyword stuffing

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