Black Hat Vs White Hat Vs Grey Hat SEO: Defined

Black Hat Vs White Hat Vs Grey Hat SEO: Defined

Black hat, white hat and grey hat SEO. Let’s get to know their definition and how they affect your SEO strategies? Which one to use and why? Find the answer here

These terms are widely used in the SEO Industry and at some point you will use it while implementing SEO strategies. But the main question is:

Which One Is Best? Is It Black Hat, White Hat or Grey SEO?

There are some SEO strategists who recommend using one of the techniques to give better results. So let’s find out which is better by understanding the difference between Black hat, white hat and grey hat SEO.

What Is White Hat SEO?

White Hat SEO means following the “rules” as per the search engine guidelines. Rank your website and keywords by using ethical tactics.

White Hat SEO Explained

To give more concrete idea what it means, let us get to know what ethical tactics White hat SEO follows:

1. Follows Search Engine Guidelines

2. Focuses on Human Audience

3. Follows Long-term Approach

1. Follows Search Engine Guidelines

Various search engines have set guidelines to website owners which they have to follow. If someone breaks or doesn’t follow these rules, they get penalised. There are proper ways to optimize a site and are an important part of SEO strategies.

All search engines say please don’t be manipulative and focus on providing better experience to users. If someone is following the rules and implementing them proper they are using white hat SEO.

2. Focuses on Human Audience

Search engines always recommend focusing on giving better experience to the site’s visitors. Those site’s visitors will be humans, not robots. Making changes to the websites which are beneficial to users, providing quality content is the main priority.

3. Follows Long-term Approach

White Hat SEO strategies follow search engines guidelines to create positive user experience(UX). Thus, it results in time consuming and is often considered a long term approach.

The results which you want to see, will take time.

That’s why few impatient people use black hat techniques to get results quicker and take the risk of getting penalties.

White hat SEO may take longer time to get the results but it has much more lasting impact. 
Check Google Guidelines to see what practise is good for you and what is not.

White Hat SEO Techniques

It is very important to understand what tactics to implement which gives better results to you. So here are White Hat SEO techniques you should know:

1. Creating relevant content

2. A clear site structure and URL – code

3. Mobile friendly optimization and adaptability

4. Making User Experience (UX) A Main Priority

1. Creative Relevant Content

A) Research and keyword selection.

B) High quality and unique texts, regular updating them.

C) Using keywords in headings and subheadings.

D) High Quality original images.

E) Creating content for users and not for search engines.

2. A clear site structure and URL- code

A) a structured website is convenient for users and is ranked better by search engines.

B) a relevant code that matches the theme of the site

3. Mobile friendly optimization and adaptability

A) Developing a responsive design considering the features of a mobile device making easier to access.

B) Shortening or deleting the only the site’s non-essential blocks in the mobile version.

C) Ensuring high loading speeds for mobile and desktop versions.

D) Dynamic serving for using different HTML and CSS for devices depending on the User-Agent data.

E) Optimization for voice searches.

F) Convenient site navigation that takes into account that mobile internet users spend less time on a page

 4. Making User Experience (UX) A Main Priority

A) Developing original and high-quality website design.

B) Clear and convenient site structure.

C) Analysis of user behaviour

What Is Black Hat SEO?

Black hat SEO is just the opposite of white hat SEO and involves risky or faulty practices. If someone use these tactics listed below, it falls under Black Hat SEO:

Black Hat SEO Explained

1. Not Following Search Engine Guidelines

2. Using Manipulative Tactics

3. Short Term Approach

1. Not Following Search Engine Guidelines

Till now you might be familiar with the search engine guidelines which strictly focuses on user experience. If it is not followed or someone tries to implement wrong techniques, they can get penalised.

2. Using Manipulative Tactics

There are few tactics or strategies which are used to boost rankings of a website. This can include using bots, keyword stuffing, PBNs, phishing, etc. This way google’s algorithm can be manipulated to rank number 1 or on any other search engines.

3. Short Term Approach

By using black hat technique, optimisers go for short term goals. They use shady techniques to boost traffic and show results to others to get clients.

Here’s a scenario:

What I have seen over the years, clients don’t know much about ranking techniques and they fall for the trap. One of our clients hired some SEO guy and in 1 week they got traffic on their website but no lead was generated. Same continued for 2 months and all their money got wasted.

Black Hat SEO Techniques

Here are Top 5 Black hat SEO techniques used by optimisers:

1. Cloaking

2. Hidden Text and Links

3. Duplicating Content using a foreign text

4. Doorway

5. Private Blog Network

1. Cloaking:

Content created for different users and search robots. Here, content which is easy to understand and visible is created for users. For spider programs, For spider programs, tailor texts according to their preferences are written. Check IP data, addresses, or user-agent strings, to determine when and what to display.

2. Hidden Text and Links:

Adding text to the site with keywords or links that are not visible to the user. They can merge with the background or be written in zero-point font, off-screen by using CSS, be hidden behind pictures or placed on invisible one-pixel images, or a link in the form of one small symbol can be hidden in the text.

3. Duplicating content using a foreign text:

In practice, Black Hat SEO does not pay attention to quality, as it is an expensive process. Content is precisely optimized in a wrong manner to manipulate the algorithms.

4. Doorway:

Are created specifically for sites to attract the attention of users and promote another resource. They are overloaded with keywords and links, they do not hold any useful information and serve as a means to transfer visitors to a promoted website.

5. Private Blog Network:

PBNs or Private Blog Network is a common practise used by optimisers to boost ranking. Multiple blogs are created which are then linked to a particular domain. This way backlinks are created in masses. It’s a good way but if you get caught, there is no way back. All the time, money and strategies implemented are wasted.

Black Hat vs. White Hat: Which One To Choose?

Now the definitions are clear, now this is the time to decide which one to choose: Black Hat or White Hat SEO?

Well what results you want is your answer. If you are looking for long term results, without getting penalised, White hat SEO is the one you should choose. It’s always better to go for the best in order to get the best.

Also, there is so much to discover in SEO even if you are a designer or belong to any other field. Following rules or just following the guidelines will lead you to a journey where you can explore a lot.

What Is Grey Hat SEO?

Now we know that Black hat SEO is bad and doesn’t not follow the guidelines of search engines. White hat SEO is time taking and we need results. So here comes the Grey hat SEO which falls just between Black Hat and White Hat SEO.

Grey Hat SEO Explained

Grey Hat SEO balances white hat and black hat SEO techniques, thus resulting in giving better solutions.

Grey Hat SEO Techniques

1. Backlinks

2. Using Relevant Keywords With Content

3. SEO-driven Brand Building

1. Backlinks

Backlinks are a great way to boost your website ranking. These are kind of referral links which you build while practising other SEO techniques. For creating backlinks, we can go for publications, commenting on other blogs, social media, forum links, etc. They all are independent and useful platforms which follow search engine guidelines.

Guest posts or content published on other sites is a great technique to build links and get traffic.

2. Using Relevant Keywords With Content

By using relevant keywords, websites can see significant amounts of traffic and when a user sees valuable information, they engage and even share it with others. You just need to provide quality content and market correctly on different platforms. When it is being shared with others, the search engines algorithm automatically brings it to top, so that others can also see.

3. SEO-driven Brand Building

Using keywords that are relevant to the content of the brand name, page, and URL address increases the likelihood of a high position in SERP.

Black Hat vs. White Hat vs. Grey Hat: Which One To Use?

Black Hat vs. White Hat vs. Grey Hat

In 2021, grey hat techniques are widely used as the competition is growing at a rapid speed. Everyone wants to be ranked on top of search engines, whether it is google, bing, yahoo, etc..

I don’t recommend using black hat techniques because of the drawbacks it has. Also, I’m here to build a brand and to provide value to users. All I want is to build a design community where I can connect with others, share my knowledge and learn from them.

As I’ve said above, we can follow rules and explore a lot. Why go in the wrong direction?

We all should practise good strategies which will help us build a brand stronger in the longer term. Focus on positive things and ignore all the negativity.

If you have any doubt, feel free to comment down below. I will try my best to resolve your queries. Help me build a strong design community where we all can stay connected, share our knowledge and get insights of the industry.

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