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Diagnosis: Weary Warrior Syndrome

Sometimes you just get tired of being the good guy.
I mean, for real! It’s 6 am, 3rd cup of coffee and already you are fighting off bots and nasties. Facing the inevitable onslaught of evil. Whoever writes all those soul-soothing lyrics of a world at peace has never worked online. Online, is war. And I for one, have days marked by weary warrior syndrome. It’s a thing! But, we fight on…

And do you know why?
Because we feel a responsibility to our clients, to give them a fair shot. For them to see the reward of their investment and hard work – and to just, you know, do well.
Because we feel a responsibility to you, the end-user, to read good quality, reliable, trustworthy content.
And because we get tired of bullies.
And the back-end of this digital universe, these days, seems to be full of bullies.

Search Engine Optimization: Black vs White

Five or 6 years ago, life was simpler. Great SEO meant the right words, in the right place, at the right time and off we go. Happy customer. Happy google. Now, it’s a warzone between those who play by the book, and those who use the book for toilet paper. Guys like Neil Patel, will tell you SEO is a marathon not a race. And, his right. But it’s a marathon run in a suit of armor.

So, who exactly is the enemy?
The title ascribed is the Black Hat brigade. And I, by contrast, represent the White Hat brigade.

Avoid Black Hat SEO

To quote crazyegg.com, the biggest difference between the White Hat and Black Hat SEO ‘brigade’ (my word) is that White Hat SEO follows Google’s guidelines and is invested in improving the user experience. While Black Hat SEO bandits violate those guidelines and do so with a complete disregard for you – the human user. White Hat SEO is all about great content, great site design and a first-class user experience. Black Hat by contrast is only interested in Google. Well, the Google robots more specifically. They couldn’t give a toss about the user experience, or the rules of engagement. It’s all about instant results and quick fixes for their clients. And yes, aren’t we brilliant accolades follow!

And why not? Look at the results…
Clients are, I am sure, blown away. The sheer genius of their ingenuity.
And they then spread the word about these villians as if they were knights in shining armour – which they are not. While the rest of us are left shuffling the sh** out of the trenches, left in the wake of their “utter brilliance”. I say all this for one reason, by way of warning. A warning to clients, and users out there who invest their hard-earned cash in companies that appear to deliver quick solutions. (And don’t get me wrong. Good guys DO DELIVER TOO. Hats off to them, I say. Praise where praise is due.)

But be careful. There are no quick results in SEO. And Google does NOT like to be made a fool of.
The only inevitable, irrevocable result is exit from the playground. Permanent exit. Which means the industry loses, the consumer loses and the customer loses. To quote Neil Patel, “Black Hat SEO tactics are a way of trying to trick the search engines into ranking your website and content better than they deserve.” And while you might get away with it for a while, when the search engines find out, they will do whatever they can to punish you. Namely, they’ll drastically decrease your rankings and NEVER give you a chance of moving back up. Please guys, that is a high price to pay for shortlived success, no matter how much you paid (in cash) to buy it. No matter the frustration and desperation. It really is not worth it!

White Hat SEO

Generally, white hat SEO refers to any practice that improves your search rankings on a search engine results page (SERP). Good SEO is not a world of instant results and instant gratification. It’s a long term investment. It’s like a relationship. It takes time, trust and endurance. So when you make the decision to invest in SEO, do your homework. Understand the process. Don’t buy into unrealistic promises that sound too good to be true… because, they probably are. There are good guys out there, who really do want you to succeed. Who really are invested in making your business rank. In daily walking the trenches to ensure Google sees you. Who really do worry about your traffic and your conversion rates, as much as you do. And if you are not sure what to look for, or who you are dealing with, do some homework, visit the sites they manage and look for the obvious tells:

Black Hat SEO techniques

The most popular Black Hat / negative SEO Practices to watch out for are:

  • Invisible Text
  • Keyword stuffing
  • Cloaking
  • Duplicate Content
  • 10000000’s of bad backlinks
  • Paid links
  • Link farms or link schemes

White Hat SEO Techniques

White Hat SEO adheres to search engine guidelines by:

  • Built or earned backlinks to well-trusted websites with high domain authority.
  • Good, fresh, competitive content and blog posts
  • Uses keyword-rich anchor text that helps Google understand the topic …
  • Security Certificates

The diagram, courtesy of Mr Patel, wraps it up succinctly:

black hat seo

Source: https://neilpatel.com/blog/black-hat-seo-strategies/
Yes, it will take longer to build your domain authority, but with patience and perseverance you WILL get the results and you won’t run the risk of destroying your website’s rankings altogether
So, to all you weary White Hat warriors out there, I say – fight on!

References: For more information of White vs Black Hat strategies visit:

1. websitesuffolk.co.uk
2. monitorbacklinks.com
3. searchenginejournal.com
4. backlinko.com