SEO companies tend to take either one of two popular approaches when it comes to optimising content for search engines. Here are the basic differences between the two philosophies.
White Hat Methods
There’s a somewhat positive connotation to the term “white hat,” and with good reason. Companies that employ white hat tactics focus on building quality content that isn’t overstuffed with keywords. White hat SEO means writing for your human audience, and not just to register at the top of Google’s search list.
It takes time and effort to write solid content for websites while making sure they’ll rank in searches. In addition, companies that employ white hat techniques make sure they abide by the guidelines set in stone thanks to the SEO Code of Ethics. Think of it as both a rulebook and style bible for leading SEO companies.
Unsurprisingly, quite a few find this challenging, choosing to go for the next method instead of taking the time to create good content for clients’ websites.
Black Hat Methods
If the name sounds sinister, you’re not overthinking. SEO experts that wear the so-called “black hat” choose the quick and easy way to search engine domination. For them, it’s better to work around the rules of SEO than to stick to the rules, mainly because the gains are much higher and faster, and partly because they find it exciting to come up with ways to “beat the system.”
Just a few of the many tricks and styles they employ are duplicate content, keyword stuffing or spamming, redirects that lead to a page that has absolutely no connection with the user’s search terms, link spamming, secret text hidden in the background of the page, and interlinked sites that simply lead the user around.
Keep in mind, though, that punishments are often more severe for black hat SEO folks — entire websites get suspended for such activities. Here’s some sound advice: The white hat looks much better on you.