What Is the Difference Between White Hat vs Black Hat Marketing (SEO)? Why You Need to Know

  • 5th October 2018

Do you feel like your marketing strategies are working?

Sometimes it feels like search engine optimization (SEO) is a difficult task. And it can be!

If you’re starting out on SEO, you may have heard about black hat and white hat marketing. Both of these styles are popular ways of trying to rank higher.

But knowing which one to pick for your website can be difficult. Lucky for you, this article will settle the white hat vs black hat debate. After reading, you’ll know what direction to take your website.

Read on to learn more.

Black Hat Marketing

Let’s begin by looking at black hat marketing. Black hat marketing is the darker of the two, and it focuses on breaking SEO rules.

SEO rules are the rules Google and other search engines have set. These rules make sure that users have enjoyable experiences on search engines.

Black hat marketing breaks these rules to reach a higher ranking. These kinds of marketers could see more immediate success.

To understand this better, let’s take a look three common black hat marketing tactics:

1. Using Fake Content

Black hat marketers often use fake content for their blog posts. Fake content can be content that the marketer stole or created with a bot.

Bot generated content tends to give itself away. Readers will be able to detect that there is something off with the content.

Stolen content is a whole different problem, but it does happen on a regular basis. To get content on their site, marketers may steal bits and pieces of other content.

This doesn’t stop at being rude; it can also be illegal. If caught, the marketer could find themselves in a lawsuit with the other website.

Google can also recognize if you have stolen content. They will rank your page lower or deindex your site if they catch you.

2. Keyword Stuffing

Often, people using black hat strategies will use keyword stuffing as a strategy. In short, this is when a site overloads at least one page with keywords.

Black hat marketers get the keywords from Google Ads. They then create an article and overuse the word.

On occasion, the content may not even make sense. They may publish a blog post with the keyword written 500 times.

When Google first started, black hat marketers could get away with this. In recent years, though, Google has been able to catch people doing this. Google will remove pages like this from its system.

White Hat Marketing

White hat marketing is, well, the opposite of black hat marketing. This is a strategy that plays by the rules.

Websites that use white hat marketing are more enjoyable for users. It also means that Google will notice that site quicker.

White hat marketers play the long game. While they may not see immediate success, their rank will grow over time. Let’s look at some common white hat strategies:

1. Creating Quality Content

White hat marketing’s most distinguishing factor is that it uses quality content. The content is informative and tends to take more time to write.

Like black hat marketing, this content also uses keywords. The difference is that writers use the keywords in a natural way.

Users prefer quality content, even in this digital age. Make sure to create content that is scannable though.

2. Organizing Your Site Well

When creating a site, white hat marketers make sure to create a strong site. Organizing your site well makes it easier for Google to index your content.

This is because crawlers look for certain hints to figure out what a site is about. If you make it obvious, they’ll be able to understand with ease.

This is also because Google prefers to rank websites that look nice higher. They want searchers to enjoy Google. This means they want to direct people to a clean and professional site.

White Hat vs Black Hat Marketing: The Final Decision

Now that we’ve looked at both white hat and black hat marketing, it’s time to make a decision. While black hat marketing might seem easier, you should stick to white hat strategies.

Because black hat marketing breaks the rules, search engines do not like these sites. If they catch you, they will rank you lower. They may even kick you off their system.

If Google recognizes that you are doing white hat strategies, you will see yourself grow. It may be slower, but a high ranking from Google is hard to lose.

White hat strategies are also better for the visitors to your site. Even if you don’t see immediate SEO success, the visitors you do have will appreciate your site more.

If you use black hat strategies, your visitors will not like your site as much. They may even stop using your site.

Plus, even if you do rank higher, new visitors may recognize that your site isn’t useful. In the end, black hat strategies will anger Google and lose your visitors.

Sticking to white hat strategies will take more work, but you’ll end up appreciating your work. Make a site you’re proud of and watch how much it helps you.

Looking for More?

Now that you know the winner of the white hat vs black hat debate, you should be ready to start your strategy today. Over time, you’ll see your site rise to the top.

Did you like this article? Check out our blog for more, and leave a comment with your best SEO strategies.

If you’re trying to optimize your site better, check out our free website analysis as well. This will help you make sure you’re on your way to success.

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