SEO is something of a dirty word, particularly for many legitimate web developers. It’s no wonder, with so many ‘black hatters’ out there clogging up the internet with their rubbish content.
Thankfully, Google is well aware of black hat and is constantly revising its algorithm in order to prevent this sort of trickery. In this post, Martin Harrison of copywriting agency Copify takes a look at some of the common black hat tricks employed by SEO copywriters and the reasons why they no longer work.
Time was, the only thing you needed to do in order to rank on Google was stuff your targeted keyword in there a dozen or so times and bingo, first page ranking. This resulted in a lot of poorly written, spammy copy like this:
“Do you like spammy SEO copy? Well you’ve come to the right place, because here at spammySEOcopy.com we are spammy SEO copy experts. This is a one stop shop for all of your spammy SEO copy needs.”
Thankfully, this is no longer considered SEO best practice as Google has become much more advanced in the way that it indexes content, looking at aspects such as semantic relevance and domain authority to establish whether or not a page is relevant to a query.
Exact match anchor links are still a big factor in SEO, but some people take it to the extreme, linking every second word on their site. This technique may have worked once, but nowadays Google is wise to it, and the more links you put on a page the less valuable they become.
White text on a white background used to be a common black hat trick to get a page to rank, without offending anybody with rubbish copy. Now, it’s likely to lead to your page, if not your whole site being taken out of Google’s index.
Write for humans first, spiders second
If you want to create a great website, it’s important to remember the golden rule, write for humans first and foremost. That way, you will have copy that sells your products and services effectively and provides real value for visitors. As a result, you are much more likely to create something that people will naturally want to share and return to, which is far more valuable than any black hat SEO.