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Black Hat SEO

Black Hat SEO describes a method of search engine optimization. It deliberately violates Google’s policies to achieve better rankings. The name was given to the Black Hat SEO in the field of Western movies, where the adversary often wore a black hat. The hero turn a white – origin for White Hat SEO .


With the beginning of the commercialization of the Internet, methods have been established with the help of which search engine results should be deliberately manipulated. Black Hat SEO (also: blackhat SEO) mainly uses spamming methods. These are very far-reaching and may include techniques such as using link farms or text hiding . 

However, more invasive methods are also used. As an example, the automated link setting can be mentioned. The goal is to attach many links to different pages through automated software programs. These usually contain no real content, but meaningless, automatically created texts. Here one hopes above all an increase of the link popularity .


There are many different methods to run Black Hat SEO. Google itself lists various procedures. [1]

  • Black Hat SEO with Software: For example, XRumer software is widely used as the Black Hat SEO spam method that can be used on many websites. As a result, you will be automatically logged in forums to automatically posts to improve the link popularity.
  • Expired Domains: Some SEOs try to use the links to link building by purchasing Expired Domains . Mostly then Expired Domains are linked to the desired project, in order to benefit from high trust of the lending side.
  • PBN (Private Blog Network): One common method is to build your own blog network, within which cross-links are built. These links can also be achieved via so-called satellite domain .
  • Article Spinning : Existing texts are modified with automated programs to create new, unique content. However, the mass production usually leads to inferior quality.
  • Negative SEO : In this case, some website operators use Black Hat techniques in order to act concretely against the competition and ban their websites from the search engine index with full intention. This includes, for example, the deliberate setting of links on link exchange programs on the sides of the competitors.
  • Link Buying: In this case, links are purchased from other websites to strengthen domain and link popularity.
  • Cloaking : With this method, search engines are shown a different web page than users.
  • Doorway Pages : These are pages that are served between the actual landing page for the purpose of receiving traffic.
  • Invisible Text: This very old Black Hat method is based on putting invisible text on the website that can only be read by search engines.

The methods presented here are still Black Hat SEO. However, like other search engines, Google has successively improved the technique of spam detection. For example, the Google Updates Penguin and Panda, which today belong to the core algorithm, are important stages in the fight against spam.

Advantages and disadvantages

The advantage of Black Hat SEO is that website operators have the opportunity to achieve a high link popularity in a short time and to make a big profit. Many webmasters use it because search engine spam detection usually takes some time. The consequence of using Black Hat SEO is a penalty or exile from the Google index .

The big drawback of Black Hat SEO is that search engines tend to spot such techniques very quickly today. The financial damage in case of a punishment of the website is therefore usually greater than the benefits that were achieved with Black Hat SEO in the short term.

Web site operators who use Black Hat SEO usually expect them to be punished and plan to do so. Google is penalizing a certain number of websites. This information is used by website operators and makes more websites with the same or similar content online. As a result, there is a greater chance that one or more web pages will remain or be excluded from the index later.

Spam fighting by Google

Google is always trying with updates of its algorithms such as the Panda update to take action against such unauthorized techniques. For example, the Panda Update developed an algorithm designed to find duplicate or copied content . It also acts against websites that operate link-spamming. The Penguin update following Panda further extended the algorithm against Webspam.

Overlays of White Hat SEO and Black Hat SEO

The numerous rules in the Google Webmaster Guidelines make it hard for website owners to act completely free of violations. Any approach of an unnatural link building for an improvement of the rankings or the attempted increase of the link popularity already represents a hiding place of the White Hat SEO. In order to allow the website operator further scope, gradations are therefore made in the degree of the offense. This is neither completely guideline-compliant search engine optimization but neither is it a violation of the guidelines. This transitional area is identified by the term Gray Hat SEO. Many websites in the SEO industry fall into this area. However, the prospects for lasting success are not necessarily positive. Because who relies on this gray area, relies on the (still) existing incompetence of search engines. However, as these improve their algorithms faster and faster, it is usually only a matter of time until “Gray Hat Techniques” also become ineffective.