Black Hat SEO: Understand What It Is and Why Not

The search for quick results in digital marketing makes many brands look for hacks. Thus, since the 90’s, some sites have used Black Hat SEO practices, in order to gain good positions in SERPs mechanisms.

However, this is disapproved by both Google and the user and, consequently, your page may suffer some penalties.

So, it would be more advantageous to try to grow with quality content and SEO techniques recommended by Google, because the risk of the rules changing and your site losing positions in the search is low.

Check out this article to know what it is, what the consequences of Black Hat SEO are, and how to find out if you have fallen into this problem.

What is Black Hat SEO?

Google’s algorithms consider some SEO practices when analyzing your page and ranking it when the user does some research. This is the best way to get visitors to a website organically.

However, people began to try to circumvent this system, in order to be on top of SERP, regardless of having quality content and leaving aside the user experience.

Therefore, Black Hat SEO is an attitude that is seen as malicious by the bot, even though this was not the intention of the blog’s author. Therefore, it is important to know the techniques and avoid using them.

What are the most common Black Hat SEO techniques?

The techniques we’ll explain here, unlike most of our articles, are not tips to follow. On the contrary, they are practices that you should avoid when building your article, so that Google doesn’t penalize your blog.

Duplicate content and pages

Plagiarism is easily recognized and this hinders the possibility of getting a good position in the SERP mechanisms. This goes for both partial and full plagiarism, even if they are two different links from your own blog, but with the same content.

Of course, we’re going to look for reliable references to produce quality content, but that doesn’t mean “copy and paste” from a third-party site. In addition to being bad in the case of ranking, it is a lack of respect for the person who made the effort and created the original content, if you don’t leave the reference.

Keyword abuse

A widely used technique for your article to be well ranked in search engines and be able to be found by people who want to know about a certain topic is the use of related keywords.

For example, if a certain subject is about “digital affiliates”, it is common that this expression is repeated a few times and strategically. This is a very used and effective SEO technique.

The problem is when there is an abuse of these words, making them occupy a good part of the text because Google understands that there is a Black Hat SEO. Therefore, it is recommended that no word occupies more than 2 to 3% of the content.

Hidden content

This is an attempt to abuse SEO techniques without making it unpleasant for the reader. Then, several relevant terms are placed hidden on the page, with the same intention as keyword abuse, which is to get a good ranking.

For this, words are placed in the same color as the background of the page, in font size 0 or even repositioning the text outside the page via CSS. Google is already able to identify these practices and penalize those who use them.

Spam in comments

It’s pretty rare to see this practice these days, but a while ago what we saw most were blogs with dozens of irrelevant comments. They were only meant to take the authority of that page to direct the reader to the site of the commenter.

However, besides the practice having diminished, the big players have already started to put the “nofollow” tag which indicates to the search engines that the referenced site should not gain any authority.

Why not do Black Hat SEO?

When some rules are broken, it is common for the individual to receive penalties, right? Likewise with Black Hat SEO. When it is noticeable that some practice on the site violates Google’s guidelines, it suffers some consequences. The most common are:

  • DE indexing the entire domain in the search engine;
  • DE indexing only the page in the search engine;
  • Position reduction in ranking.

Also, your page may be frowned upon by the ranking bot and have difficulty ranking other content, even if it doesn’t break any rules.

How do I know if I’ve been penalized?

In some cases, your company will receive a notice that you’ve been punished, but in others, you’ll only know if you realize it yourself. We have some tips for you to be able to understand in a timely manner.

First of all, be sure to keep track of metrics in Google Analytics or other tools you use. This helps not only identify the penalties, but other important things about your site that will help you create strategic content.

With the metrics in hand, observe if:

  • there was some sharp drop in position in SERPs;
  • the number of visits to your website has greatly decreased;
  • Is having more difficulty indexing the page than usual.

Then check your relevance on Google to those using the search engine. Then, do different tests, such as searching for keywords that your site was ranked well and searching for the name of the site itself.

If in these surveys, your results are lower than before, it is possible that you have been punished. This process is similar to shadow ban of Instagram in which people – especially famous – appear in a lower position at which they were before when your username is searched.

Certainly, Black Hat SEO can bring benefits to your page, but there are adequate ways to achieve the same results. So be creative and pursue growth without breaking Google policy.