“Black hat SEO” is a phrase to describe various techniques used by webmasters in order to rank high in search engines that violate search engine guidelines.

Each search engine have their own guidelines to help webmasters get their site included in search engine indexes. In order to get included a site should comply with those rules or it might be excluded from indexes. Major search engine guidelines:

  1. Google Webmaster Guidelines – http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=35 769
  2. Yahoo! Search Content Quality Guidelines – http://help.yahoo.com/l/us/yahoo/search/basics/basics-18.html
  3. MSN Guidelines for successful indexing – http://tinyurl.com/MSN-Guidelines [link was shortened as the original is really long one]

If someone intentionally breaks those rules they put their site on risk of ban or removal from indexes.

And that’s exactly what black hat SEO “specialists” do. They break those rules on purpose. They don’t care about users and search engines. They want traffic. And its not targeted traffic.

Black hat SEO techniques

Black hat SEO techniques include:

  • Keyword stuffing – put lots and lots of keywords on site without real unique content; also hiding keywords on site and make them visible only to search engines,
  • Doorway pages – single pages to direct traffic to other pages, do not have any valuable content itself,
  • Cloaking – showing one version of site to the users and another to the search engines,

White hats vs Black hats

White hats tend to produce results that last a long time, whereas black hats anticipate that their sites may eventually be banned either temporarily or permanently once the search engines discover what they are doing – Wikipedia.

White hat SEO specialists create websites for human beings, make them easily accessible for search engines and use other methods to promote them on the Internet.

Black hat SEO’s create website only for search engines. They break search engine guidelines and use deception to drive traffic to a site with low value to the user.

White hat SEO aim to stay in high rankings for a long time, generating targeted traffic to the site, satisfy incoming users by giving them what they search for and enable search engines to crawl their site with ease.

Black hat SEO aim to trick visitors to visit a website, trick search engines by showing it a different (SE optimized version of a site) and rank well for desired keyword for short period of time. That is, until search engine discovers an unethical method used by such site and removes it from search engine results for those keywords.


Don’t do evil. Make websites for people and don’t deceive or trick them. Don’t do black hat SEO.

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