Are you avoiding Black-Hat SEO or do you know how?  Maybe I can help.  More and more customers are coming to us needing us to reverse the damage of their previous SEO company or web developer.  I know, I’ve written about this before but it seems that no matter how much I write about it, it just keeps happening.   I wish there were some way I could just telepathically enter people’s minds and tell them these few tidbits.  Being as that is impossible, I’ll settle for another blog post.

Here is a good list to start with for avoiding Black-Hat SEO.

First of all, when someone tells you they include SEO, you should always ask some questions.

Do you use KEYWORD LOADING?

What is keyword loading?  Have a look:

 

Google uses the content in regular websites to determine if your website is worth the reader’s attention.  If your content is slim with too much style and too little content, Google will not show your website to those searching exactly for it.  Some black-hat SEO companies have found a way around this, abet if it is only temporary.  These black-hats place search phrases at the bottom of a website where most humans would never look for it.

The problem with this is, Google and Bing see this as what it is, trickery.  Because they both strive to deliver great content to those searching for it, the search engines retaliate, big time!  Give it a shot.  Google Top Class Movers.  You’ll notice this website comes up on the 511th page of Google.   These SEO guys put a lot of work into putting those keywords on that website so why?  Why aren’t they #1?

That’s because Google retaliated and recognized it as junk and like junk it is now buried in the bottom of the search results.  If you pay for something like this, you’re only paying for a temporary boost in search relevance.  Afterwards, you can expect your website to take a lot of time and a hell of a lot more money to bring back up in the rankings.

Do you post LINKS on other websites?

This one is paramount! This WILL get your website banned on Google for spamming!  Black-hat SEO companies will use bots to spam links on other websites with comment forms and forums.  The problem with this is, this is taxing on resources for the companies these companies take advantage of – it bloats their databases, bogs down their server’s CPU’s, and makes the user experience for their customers generally bad making them lose customers because your Black-hat SEO company has zero consideration for others.   Thankfully, there is some justice in this world.  Google, Bing, and Yahoo will ban any website that has these links spammed around the internet.

From my own experience, I know this to be true.  I had an old website that I abandoned but kept hosted and updated for quite some time.  After years of spam, I stopped and gave up moderating all the spam. One day I had someone contact me pleading for me to remove their links from the website.  I told the guy that I’m not touching it and he offered me $1,000 to remove the links.  When I asked him why, he explained that Google had banned him and all websites associated with his hosting provider for the spam links everywhere.  It didn’t stop there.  A few months later another contacted me with the same dilemma.  A week later, another and then more.  In total I had more than 150 people contact me asking me to remove the links to their website.  This is where our reputation restoration services started.

If your prospective firm engages in this practice, stay far-far away!

Do you use Focus Keywords?

Actually, this is something you WANT them to do.  Focus keywords is a new method of SEO that we employ to now ensure that a keyword has proper significance in a page it is meant for.  By default Google knows what kind of website you have from the domain name and URL structure.  However, what Google might not know is the general idea of the page.  For instance, if we have an About Us page, Google knows that page is about your company and reacts accordingly.  However, what Google may not know is that your company focuses on retail.  In that case, a focus keyword to use for your about us page isn’t just “About” and “Company” but “retail” must also be used and properly tagged in headers and content.

Do you perform Rich Content Tagging?

If you are doing eCommerce or have an online shop or review type website, this is an absolute must.  When you search Google and see in the search results that a site or product has a rating and price and all that sort of stuff, it is because the SEO Firm has properly used Rich Content Tagging.  This means they have properly tagged their content to let the search engine know that a few important fields are relevant for the product or service.  Rating is one important factor.  Price and Stock count is another.