Black hat SEO techniques, encapsulated by spamdexing, involve manipulating the way search engines perceive the relevance of a web page in a way that is often inconsistent with search engine guidelines. Duplicate content, article spinning, keyword stuffing, and cloaking are all examples of black hat SEO tactics that can lead to penalties from search engines. In this article, we'll discuss what black hat SEO is and provide 17 examples of black hat SEO techniques to avoid. At its core, black hat SEO is a practice that manipulates search engine algorithms to gain an unfair advantage in rankings.
This is done by using tactics that are not in line with search engine guidelines. As a result, these techniques can lead to penalties from search engines such as Google and Bing. Duplicate content refers to the well-known “copy and paste” content creation practice across domains and means that blocks of content copied from different sources exactly match each other or look very similar. Search engines prefer unique content, so deliberately duplicated content across different domains is perceived as one of the worst black hat techniques.
When the same results are found on Google's list, it's a clear sign of manipulation of search engine rankings and usually results in a poor user experience. Duplicate content not only affects different domains, but also one domain. However, the second case is not so serious because it is usually a sign of lack of knowledge or neglect. Therefore, it is crucial to implement a canonical tag to indicate the original version of your article.
This way, you make other copies invisible to Google robots. Article spinning is a technique similar to the problem of duplicate content (above) and is becoming increasingly popular. This is higher-level plagiarism and involves the use of special software that takes the copied source and reformulates it for later use as a “new” and unique publication. The modification efficiently reduces the risk of being detected by any plagiarism tool. When you insert the term “cloaking” into the Google search bar, you will be given a Google Knowledge result that first explains “cloaking” as a search engine technique that presents completely different content or URL to the user than to the search engine spider.
In fact, this method of SEO is considered misleading because it misleads search engines to get the desired rankings for the target keywords. Keyword stuffing involves overusing the same keywords on a page to maximize its visibility and organic traffic. Keyword-packed content doesn't seem natural, so it's not easy to use. The Unamo website optimization classifier can detect keyword stuffing on your page and warn you about its consequences. Black hat SEO involves providing inaccurate information in structured data to deceive search engines and users. For example, someone who practices blackhat SEO could give themselves five stars from a fake review site and add structured data to make it stand out on search results pages.
This is a very risky practice, as search engines such as Google encourage users to report that websites misuse data. Google strongly penalizes black hat tactics, whether done consciously or not. Here are 17 black hat practices you should avoid because they can give you an algorithmic or manual penalty:
- Adding footer links with commercial anchor text at scale
- Using keyword stuffing
- Creating duplicate content
- Using cloaking
- Misusing structured data
- Creating doorway pages
- Using link farms
- Using hidden text or links
- Creating malicious redirects
- Using link schemes
- Creating scraped content
- Using automated queries
- Creating spun content
- Using private blog networks (PBNs)
- Buying links
- Selling links