There are four main types of SEO or search engine optimization, all aimed at helping you
increase your site’s visibility in search results
The main differences have to do with how long it takes before you begin to see results (time), cost, risk, and value.
Black hat SEO will get you where you want to go faster. It is usually less costly because you are taking shortcuts to the top by going against published Google Webmaster Guidelines. In fact, many black hat SEO tactics are specifically spelled out in the guidelines as things you should NOT do. As such, they carry the risk that your website and/or content will be banned from search results or demoted the next time Google updates its ranking algorithm. That’s no small concern. Google updates its ranking algorithm roughly 500-600 times a year. Black hat SEO returns value quickly, but there is a high risk that the value cannot and will not be sustained. Contact us for a custom review and quote for your business email@example.com
White hat SEO techniques, on the other hand, adhere to Google Webmaster Guidelines but usually take longer and cost more to carry out as a result. On the upside, white hat SEO carries far less risk and tends to deliver lasting and compounding value over time. You’ll find most of the respected SEO and content marketing companies like Moz, Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Watch, Search Engine Land, Search Engine Roundtable, the SEM Post, Stone Temple, GSQI, and Philadelphia-area Seer Interactive and SEMRush all use and recommend white hat SEO tools and techniques.
Contact us for a custom review and quote for your business firstname.lastname@example.org
Grey hat SEO falls somewhere in the middle as these tactics are not specifically called out in Google’s Guidelines. You should be cautious about taking this path as it is not safe to assume that just because a specific technique isn’t labeled or mentioned as being deceptive and one that will get you into trouble, that it will not interfere negatively with your rankings. In fact, Google says:
Webmasters who spend their energies upholding the spirit of the basic principles will provide a much better user experience and subsequently enjoy better ranking than those who spend their time looking for loopholes they can exploit.