Blackhat, Whitehat and other colors are often used to describe the practices which search engine optimization companies employ.
Blackhat usually refers to employing unscrupulous techniques for SEO. One of the oldest blackhat practices is keyword stuffing. Keywords are hidden in a page’s code that is not visible to users to trick the search engines.
Some common places keyword stuffing occurs:
- meta keyword tag (Google has ignored this tag for years)
- text areas of forms
- making text the same color as the background
- using negative margins to position text far off the browser’s boundaries
Google® is wise to these shady techniques nowadays, and using them will quickly get your site removed from results. Even today unqualified SEO companies employ these “ancient” techniques, and their clients suffer the consequences.
Some Blackhat SEO companies use risky automated backlink building software. Software capable of building thousands of links in no time at all. The software seeks out and spams blogs, forums, and just about any online form that you can insert a link into. Again Google has wised up to this behavior and will flag your site quickly for removal.
Whitehat is considered to be the honest Google® approved method of getting your site to rank. At least that’s what self proclaimed whitehat companies believe.
Some methods so called whitehat companies use:
- Purchasing Sponsored links
- Paying Press Release publishing sites for backlinks.
- Getting backlinks by paying off guest bloggers.
- Creating content and networks of Blogs, Social Media Sites, etc that interlink between each other and your site.
Sounds pretty innocent, but at the end of the day, they are trying to manipulate the search engines. These so called whitehat techniques have gotten sites penalized severely as well.
In closing, It’s all blackhat because you are attempting to manipulate the search engines. There’s just varying degrees.
What’s the option for playing by the rules? Google® claims all one simply has to do is create great content, and it will rank. That may work for super niche keywords, but it has yet to work for competitive search terms. Your best bet is to forget about hat colors, and have a healthy balance of several methods. Great content, excellent on page SEO, and quality backlinks.