Understanding Black Hat SEO and How it Can Affect Your Business
While there are many marketing strategies for your small business, some may be less viable than others. They may provide a short-term boost that cannot be maintained in the long run with repeated applications.
Black hat SEO represents one of those short-term solutions. While this can be a powerful too, there are many downsides to using it. This is why understanding what it is, the principles behind it, and what it can do to affect your business is important.
What is Black Hat SEO?
To understand how black hat SEO works in terms of SEO marketing, you must first realize how search engines work. They utilize mathematical equations to derive numbers that can be used to rank websites in search results.
Black hat SEO works by taking advantage of this principle. A black hat SEO campaign may utilize one or more techniques designed to boost certain SEO values for a website.
Before asking “How can black hat SEO help me with marketing my small business?”, there are a few more things to understand about this technique.
The Principles of Black Hat SEO
The best way to explain how black hat SEO works is to utilize a historical example.
When search engines were relatively new, they utilized an incredibly simple way of ranking websites. The more links a website had pointing to it, the more likely it was to rank incredibly high in any given search results page.
Black hat SEO was born on the day when web applications like guest books and comments were spammed to no end to take advantage of this. Millions of spam links were created by automated software in an attempt to push websites to the top of search results pages.
Search engines quickly caught on to this technique. They moved to implement smarter algorithms that put different values to links, considered the relevance of content, and explored different ways to make searching the Internet easier.
When these changes were implemented, websites using these techniques dropped incredibly fast. Some saw traffic disappear overnight.
The main principles of black hat SEO can be seen in this example. They utilize short-term techniques to push themselves up. It does not work for long because it takes advantage of errors or unethical approaches to SEO. It tends to be used on low to moderate competition searches.
How Can Black Hat SEO Affect Your Business?
You might ask, “How can I go about marketing my small business with black hat SEO?” The best response is that you will only be doing so for a short time.
Black hat SEO is notorious for becoming invalidated by small changes in search engines. This is why many websites tend to experience significant ranking drops when major updates occur to Google, Bing or Yahoo.
The reason black hat SEO marketing isn’t one of the most viable marketing strategies pertains to the way it results in penalties to websites. Your website’s rankings could drop due to these penalties, or it may be removed from search engine results completely.
It’s important to understand that black hat SEO tends to be unfavorable due to the negative penalties it can incur. It can be viable for some short-term campaigns, but it is typically best to opt for growth using white hat SEO.