White Hat vs. Black Hat SEO: What is the Difference?

[Understand Ethical SEO Practices]

Effective SEO is vital to the success of your website and social presence. Many people have heard of SEO but are unsure what it means or how it works for their business. Fewer are aware that there is more than one type of SEO.

What is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimization. Search engine optimization uses specific tools and methods to optimize your website to drive traffic (unpaid and organic) from search engine results to your webpage. Organic results are those that occur due to someone entering specific search terms or phrases into the search field and finding your website because of their search. Organic results are not from paid or sponsored searches. Improving search engine optimization requires making specific changes to your website design and content to make your site more attractive to a search engine.

What is White Hat SEO?

When content developers and website administrators like our team of professionals at MGMT Digital develop sites based on SEO, they do so within the search engines’ terms of service. That is what it means to follow white hat SEO practices. White hat SEO uses the requirements of the search engine to improve your site’s reach and effectiveness on search engine result pages.

Using white hat SEO means you maintain the integrity of your website by not straying outside of the terms of service set forth by the search engine. For example, Google’s guidelines should be strictly followed to ensure SEO methods have the best results possible. Examples of white hat SEO practices include:

  • Fast site loading times.
  • Mobile-friendly sites.
  • Easy site navigation.
  • Quality content and services.
  • Keyword-rich meta tags.

White Hat vs. Black Hat SEO; What’s the Difference?

It is perhaps easiest to understand white hat vs. black hat SEO by thinking of “good guys” and “bad guys.” When you watch television or read books, you will notice that the “good” entities in film or text are often portrayed with “white” imagery to signify good. The good guys in mob movies wore white. Alternately, black is a color that frequently represents bad or harmful. In those same mobster movies, the bad guys wore black.

The key differences between white hat and black hat SEO revolve around how site developers and content creators use SEO practices to create and maintain online content. White hat SEO uses ethical optimization practices and tactics that follow search engine rules and guidelines. White hat SEO improves your website’s search engine performance using tactics that maintain site integrity. White hat SEO sites include properly researched meta tags relevant to the site content.

Black hat SEO does not follow the same practices. Sites developed using black hat SEO use tactics that focus on how the search engine determines site relevance rather than how people search for sites. Black hat SEO does not follow ethical guidelines or search engine guidelines. On sites developed using black hat SEO, you will find site development practices that improve site ranking in unethical ways, such as keyword stuffing, irrelevant backlinks, and click-for-ranking techniques.

Why MGMT Digital Uses White Hat SEO Techniques

Effective SEO is essential to successful site rankings. However, it is crucial to use ethical SEO guidelines when developing your website. MGMT Digital uses white hat SEO techniques for all of our clients. We understand the value of ethical and human-focused content. Sites that use white hat SEO are designed for long-term gain and client-centered content.

At MGMT Digital, we understand that SEO may seem confusing. Many steps go into creating effective, useful SEO content that adheres to ethical guidelines and follows the terms of service set forth by search engines. As a business owner, CEO, CFO, or marketing manager, you have a lot to do to keep your business running at optimal levels. Let us help you keep your digital content up to date and working for your business. Contact us at MGMT Digital today to learn more about our services and how we can help your business.

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