White Hat SEO vs Black Hat SEO: What’s The Difference

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One of the most important elements of creating authentic and engaging content and improving the website is without a doubt, SEO! Understanding SEO can be a complicated deal because of the different specifications and types of SEO. Different types of SEO include On Page SEO and Off Page SEO, and also Gray Hat SEO, White Hat SEO, Black Hat SEO, Technical SEO and Negative SEO.

This article explores the difference between two of these SEO types, Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO.

What Is SEO?

SEO or Search Engine Optimization is in simple terms, the process of improving a website to increase visibility when potential customers are searching for products and services sold by your business in several search engines such as Bing, Yahoo, Google and others. With improved visibility in the search results, your business can get more attention from your target audience and attract more customers to your business.

SEO is an essential part of digital marketing because there are literally billions of searches focused on commercial information about products and services that are carried out every year! And search is the main source of digital organic traffic for businesses. The searches are more focused on information-specific data and are directed towards what the consumers want. And SEO does just that for you and avoids the traffic from being driven to other websites.

What Is White-Hat SEO?

White-Hat SEO is the optimisation technique that works in accordance with the search engine guidelines laid down by Google. The result takes some time but creates genuinely good results for your business and is a sustainable technique. This SEO gives the website high rewards and the risk of getting banned or discarded in the search results is almost negligible.

White-Hat SEO helps in publishing relevant and serviceable content by doing an extensive keyword search and accessing links for publishing from high-authority and secure websites for your on-page content to ensure it performs well. White-Hat SEO takes several factors into consideration such as meta information, written content, images and videos, site performance and site architecture for optimization.

What Is Black-Hat SEO?

The exact opposite of White-Hat SEO is Black-Hat SEO and can be a bendy deal with some illegal optimization factors in play. Black-Hat SEO takes advantage of the loopholes in the search algorithms of Google to help improve a business’s rankings in the SERPs. Unlike white-hat SEO, this particular type utilises practices such as keyword stuffing, presenting different content to chatbots and consumers (referred to as cloaking), paid link building, etc.

If these loopholes are identified and the optimization fails, your business’s rankings can drop massively and the site can even get blacklisted from search engines! The risk is extremely high and it is because of this reason that black-hat SEO is usually a short-lived technique. Besides keyword stuffing and cloaking, some other black-hat SEO practices/elements include duplicate content, article spinning, doorway pages, hidden pages, and blog comment spam.

White Hat SEO vs Black Hat SEO – Differences

Here are some key areas where white-hat SEO and black-hat SEO differ in terms of their working:-

Link Building-seo

White hat is concerned with generating content that is useful for educating the audience and attracting them. The aim is to create informative content that other sites can link to as one of their sources.

Black-hat SEO on the other hand uses PBNs or Private Blog Networks to add duplicate spam links to any blogs in the comment section. These links are paid for and are against the guidelines laid down by Bing and Google.

2.    Purpose Of Content

Purpose Of Content-seo

The content in white-hat SEO is written to cater to the needs of the client first and answer their queries during navigating. The rankings are higher because the content is optimized according to the target audience to help display the content in the search engines.

The content in black-hat SEO is in reality a doorway page. These contain keyword spamming and have been taken from different websites just for the sake of adding apparent value to the content. The content is not focused on the client but instead, it is aimed only at the search engines.

3.    Risk

Implementing black-hat SEO and white-hat SEO is both risky but the risk of white-hat SEO is relatively low and is only related to not running on a given platform.

However, in the case of black-hat SEO, the risk is manual as a result of using the PBN links which can help you get high rankings in no time but again, if these loopholes are identified, the websites run the risk of getting banned completely.

4.    Results

White-hat SEO can improve search performance on SERP. However, since it works in accordance with the guidelines of the respective search engines, the results can take a considerably long time and you have to be really patient for it.

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However, the black-hat SEO results are quick because of aggressive SEO tactics in use and are generally used by website owners that are seeking quick financial benefits from their websites.

5.    Third-Party Posts

Guest blogging is a famous content strategy that multiple bloggers and marketers can use. When it comes to third-party posts, white-hat SEO largely uses guest blogging to get more backlinks and improve the credibility of the website.

Black-hat SEO does not technically resort to thirst-party posts but resorts to a practice known as parasite hosting. This is a technique in which a particular website is hosted on a different server without any legal permissions from the owners of this server and without any notice to them and is purely for search engine benefits.

Google guidelines for websites

Google offers guidelines for website developers and owners to create easily searchable content that users can find. These guidelines aim to ensure content that is trustworthy, relevant, and high-quality. Google also uses algorithms to rank content in search results. These are the key guidelines and algorithms website owners need to be aware of.

1. Quality Guidelines:

Google’s Quality Guidelines give website owners a set of best practices to create high-quality content that is user-friendly. These guidelines stress the importance of writing original, well-written content, free from manipulative or spammy tactics. Website owners must ensure that their content is user-friendly and easy to navigate.

2. E-A–T:

Google’s E–A-T algorithm stands for Expertise Authority and Trustworthiness. This algorithm is used for assessing the credibility of website content and authors. Website owners must ensure that their content has been written by experts in their field and contains links to authoritative sources.

3. Panda:

Google’s Panda algorithm penalizes websites with low-quality, spammy or duplicate content. Panda will not penalize websites that have duplicate content or low-quality content. Website owners must ensure that their content is original and well-written.

4. Penguin:

Google’s Penguin algorithm penalizes websites that use spammy or manipulative link-building methods. Website owners must focus on building natural, high-quality links from authoritative sources to avoid Penguin penalties.

5. Mobile-Friendly:

Google’s Mobile Friendly algorithm rewards websites that are mobile-friendly. Website owners must ensure their websites are mobile-friendly and responsive to this algorithm.

Website owners can increase their chances of being ranked highly in Google search results and attract more visitors by following these guidelines.


We hope this article was helpful in understanding what black-hat SEO and white-hat SEO are and how the two types of SEO differ from one another. While black-hat SEO may seem like a good option for getting quick results, there is a clear proof for avoiding it at all costs and you must go for an SEO type that does not run the risk of having your website rankings drop or worse, permanently banned!

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