Black Hat SEO techniques, tricks and tactics worked in the good old days. However, as search engines started taking strict actions and updating algorithms to penalize sites using these malicious tactics, things have become really tough. Search engines hate being tricked. So they took adequate measures to ensure cleaner and more accurate results.
Although it is tough to achieve organic rankings with proper techniques, nothing can, better than going white hat. So strictly avoid falling into the trap of following any new black hat/shady SEO techniques as mentioned below:
1. Over Optimization of Website
The technique usually includes keyword stuffing, which can get you penalized by Google Panda. Over-optimized ALT Description, commercial anchor text on internal pages, using irrelevant keywords, trying to over-optimize the Inbound Links that ruins link profile, use of hidden/ invisible text and links, and hiding links and text will definitely tank your site.
2. Keyword Stuffing
An old technique, keyword stuffing had enjoyed its share of glory. The concept was very popular before the 2000s. Later on, when Google started realizing how useless content stuffed with keywords is for the user, the technique got banned. It is like answering a simple question by stuffing irrelevant words into it. For instance, if you sell cupcakes and a potential customer asks you about rose-flavored cupcakes, you would simply answer ‘yes we have it’ or ‘sorry, we don’t sell rose flavored cupcakes.’
Stuffing keywords is like answering, “We do have cupcakes. Our best selling product is the rose-flavored cupcakes because these cupcakes taste heavenly and all of our customers love rose, so rose-flavored cupcake is a great option.”
Now this sounds crazy! No one talks like that. Repeated use of keyword in an article or chunk of text is similar to defining a word by using the same word over and over again. This will give your customer bad experience. Panda Google Algorithm will penalize you for low-quality content. Hence, the best way to write expressions is to write like you are talking to someone. Google values content written for people more than SERPs.
3. Over-Optimized Alt Description
Search engine crawlers can detect this. In this technique, the image is loaded with lousy numbers of keywords. Although it is not possible to see them, over optimizing ALT description is very harmful. Add images to articles is recommended for making them more approachable. Writing ALT descriptions to images is useful, but you should not abuse the technique.
4. Linking Over-Optimization
Interestingly, webmasters have a tendency to find new and all kinds of scammy methods to score high ranking on search engines. The black hat SEO technique involves placing internal links forcefully on the homepage for other pages such as “Contact us”, “About us”, “Products” and so on. This is very unpractical and useless because the pages get a good amount of traffic already. It is always better to get deep links for strengthening internal links.
5. Duplicate Content
This kind of content appears on multiple sites. Duplicate can also be stolen from several other places (URLs). Search engines have a tough time choosing from all of the duplicates content and then displays the correct piece of information. However, Google shows only the original content in SERPs as duplicate content isn’t relevant to the user.
In the past, duplicate content couldn’t damage sites. However, the technique may hamper your ranking now. It will also increase the risk of your website for getting penalized by Google Panda. The safest way to use duplicate content is by including citation for the information gathered from external sources. Also, prior to submitting website content online, check if it is plagiarism free.
6. Mirror Sites
These sites are used for reflecting original website content into a new one. The aim is to improve search engine ranking. Another reason is to duplicate content from your site or even various other resources. You may be convinced to use the technique in the event of attacks by DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service). DDoS can be defined as a cyber attack involving several compromised systems for targeting a single system so as to access crucial (personal) information.
7. Typosquatting or URL Hijacking
This is a hijacking technique based on a typographical error. It aims to create malicious domains that look similar to reputed brands. The error may be due to common misspelling, foreign spelling that go unnoticed, Country Code Top-Level Domain abuse, etc. The primary reason for this practice is to gain profit from the popularity of rand and the trademark name. One major downside for this practice is that it puts a brand reputation at risk of facing cybercrime.
8. Toxic Websites
When a website is created only for the purpose of link building and it has link issues, then it is toxic.
9. Negative SEO
It does the opposite of whatever is expected! It will cut down your traffic and decrease visibility of SEO on a consistent basis. The technique involves false reporting to competitors which ultimately penalize the site.
10. Content Automation
It is a technique of using scripts or tools to generate content automatically and then publish it on your website without any attempt from your side. Such content is not written for the user. Also, it does not have any format or style. It is also without any pictures, alignment, headings of HTML, paragraph spacing, etc. Although it may seem to be a very good idea for short term. It will give you surplus content sans any efforts. However, soon this will result in significant rank loss. It leads to keyword stuffing and very high risk of getting blacklisted from Google.
11. Shady Redirects
The 301 redirect was a good practice in the past. It was used to send a user from one URL to another in case, the original page is moved or changed. Unfortunately, over the years, it started being used as a bad SEO technique. A lot of webmasters started to exploit expired domains for link juice. They redirect an old site to their own website. Here, using 301 redirects is will be considered black hat SEO. You can get penalized if expired domain is irrelevant.
12. Google Bombing
The process influences page rank via artificially increasing the linking number to it as well as anchor texts used for the same. Google algorithm is manipulated by black hat SEO practitioners by “helping” one-page rank for a different keyword. This happens due to same anchor text used pages linking to that specific page. The common examples of Google bombing are “completely wrong” query for Mitt Romney. Searching images for “completely wrong” will prompt Google to display an image with Mitt Romney.