What is SEO and Black Hat SEO
Searching for something on the Internet, you probably have already noted that the order of the search results in search engines may vary depending on which one you use. If not, search for "SEO" in several major search engines, such as google.com, yahoo.com and bing.com. The order of the results differs. Why? This is the magic of SEO.
The need for the positioning of pages appeared with the first search engines (90s of last century). Initially, search engines take into account only the keywords that appear in the header. The more, however, the network grew, the search engines’ algorithms become more difficult to manipulate.
SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimization. Optimization involves the use of treatments that will help to determine best position of the website in the search engines.
Currently, search engine algorithms are responsible for the order of the presented results, taking into account the hundreds of factors and they are subjected to a constant alteration.
Search engines in order to provide their users with the most valuable answers, use the system, which allow them to analyze all the information contained in the network in a instant and select those which best refer to your request.
Each search engine establish its own algorithm which is regularly modified and by which it functions. For example, Google in its algorithm recognizes more than 200 agents. And this year it plans to introduce up to 500 (!) corrections.
It should be noted that the positioning is an ongoing process that requires constant "supervising". Changes introduced by the search engines can upset the websites’ ranking upside down.
Thus, the website in order to keep its high position in the search engine must have the elements that search engine takes into consideration when setting the ranking results. These are, among others:
- •words – page should contain as much keywords as possible, that is, phrases that Internet users write to the search engine. Of course the keywords should be related to the topic of the text. Text packed with keywords unrelated to the content is illegal, it can be easily detected and penalized by the search engine.
- •titles – each page in the network has its own official, hidden in the code, title. Search engines pay a lot of attention to the titles. They should, to some extent summarize the content of the site.
- •links to the page (their quantity and quality) – if one website recommends (linking to) the other, it means that this website provides valuable information. The more recommendations the website has, the more valuable it is from the point of view of the search engine. There is one objection – recommendations from reputable websites are more valued by the search engines.
- •reputation – the more websites relies on the page, the better, according to the search engines algorithm assumptions, is it’s a quality. However, the recommendation from the website, having a strong position, is more important than from less popular one.
Websites optimizing is becoming increasingly popular marketing action. It is chosen by companies to improve sales performance. You cannot, however, require miracles. Even the best SEO specialist is not able to make the average website of objectively poor usability, poor text quality, etc. earn profits counted in millions for its owner. The website must be well prepared in order to achieve expected results thanks to positioning. It would be best if the SEO specialist participated even in the architectural design of the website.
Black hat SEO
Black hat SEO is the whole of positioning tactics and pages optimization that allow to achieve a high position in the search engines, but do not comply with current ethical guidelines laid down in the rules of browsers. I say "current" because the line between lawful and unlawful tricks in SEO is constantly changing.
The name ”black hat SEO” is derived from the English term "black hat" meaning villain. This expression refers mainly to the western scoundrels who, in contrast to the positive heroes, wore black hats.
Black hat SEO methods are often used by small entities. Specialists working for medium and large agencies rarely resort to black SEO tricks. Why? The balance of potential profits and losses is what convince them. Sanctions can be painful and deter the customers. However not always.
The type of the project is also taken into account while choosing the tactic. Black hat SEO can be cost-effective for short-term projects. Then the losses resulting from the sanctions imposed by the browser will be smaller than the benefits of this "unethical" strategy.
Why it doesn’t pay to use black hat SEO tricks?
If the browser finds the methods used in SEO promotion of the site as unethical and contrary to the regulations, it may apply specific sanctions:
- •exclusion from the index
- •reducing confidence in the particular domain
- •significant reduction of the position in the search results
In addition, by avoiding the black hat SEO techniques:
- •we can attract valuable links to our site
- •we contribute to building a decent network, useful information base
- •position in search results, gaining in a "clean" way is more durable because it is less susceptible to changes in browsers algorithms
A few, often used, shady moves when it comes to black hat SEO:
- •hiding keywords and links – it can be done in a several ways. Most often located on the webside and hidden text is written in this same color as the background or its size is set to 0. However, the effect is the same - the visitor does not see it.
- •cloaking – involves presenting different content to robot browsers than the content that is seen by the visitors.
- •the use of link exchange system – the number Web sites that are linking a particular Web site is important for its position in the search results. File-sharing systems, however, very often use the worthless , "junk" internet pages, created only for the purpose of exchanging links.
- •keyword stuffing – overloading the content with keywords.
- •the use of keywords on pages unrelated to the content
- •buying links – is inconsistent with the principles laid down by the browsers only when it is done regardless of the quality of the links, the sources from which they come from and the long-term impact they will have on the Web site
- •deceptive redirects – redirecting to different site without the consent of the user.
According to many SEO professionals, methods included in the black hat SEO can also be used in another, "clean way".
Here's how techniques associated with black hat SEO can be used in an acceptable manner:
- •Hidden text – creating a modern website in CSS the text can be hidden using Jquery effects. The text will appear when you click the mouse.
- •cloaking – your site may contain elements that search engines will not be able to analyze (eg heavy animations in Flash). In that case you can share the masked text to the browser, creating especially for the browser a transparent version of the site.
- •buying links – you can do it in an indirect way, for little money, and do a good deed. How? By donating some money for charity organization, the address of our web site can be put on the list of donors. Charitable services are often highly ranked sites, so the link to our website posted by them will also be high in the ranking.
- •keyword stuffing – overloading the content with a meaningless keywords can be replaced with something more meaningful and what’s more all the work can be done by the users :-). Tagging is a great idea – it is used by almost all the major social networking sites.