The SEO Revolution: Why Playing by the Rules is the Only Way to Win
Everyone enjoys a good shortcut or scheme for getting rich quickly, but most of us are rational enough to recognise when something is simply too good to be true. Not long ago, we heard about SEO strategies that could propel a website to the top of Google in a matter of weeks by utilising tools, automated methods, and keyword strategies. Even some of the more reputable SEO firms have been accused of employing dubious SEO tactics such as keyword stuffing.
In general, questionable SEO strategies were inexpensive, quick, and dependable. Search engines such as Google made several algorithm updates and other efforts to combat spam and black hat behavior between 2009 and 2012. This marked the start of Google’s awakening to the black hats and even gray hats which were manipulating their results. The Panda and Penguin updates, in particular, resulted in the punishment of thousands of websites and forced many SEO firms to completely change their strategies.
Since then, there has been a strong trend toward legitimate, white-hat SEO and content marketing strategies over the last five years. These strategies, which are used by online casinos such as uptown aces, provide long-term results while also eliminating the risk of being penalized. Apart from this critical sequence of events, there are four inherent reasons why black hat and shady SEO tactics simply do not work as well as they used to:
Search Engines Have Evolved to an Unfathomably High Level and Will Continue to Do So
Consider a building that houses some of the world’s brightest minds, all crammed into tiny cubicles and toiling away to maintain a search engine that can detect spam from a mile away. This massive team of bright and experienced professionals is working tirelessly to ensure that the search results provide site visitors with accurate and useful information. One could argue that we’re talking about Google, but the evolution of search engines goes far beyond the company’s famous headquarters in Mountain View, California.
When you consider how advanced the technology is and how far the businesses behind these search engines have come, it almost seems absurd to believe that any marketer or SEO specialist could outwit these people. The inevitable realisation that black hat SEO is no match for good, white-label SEO has driven many former black hats away from that way of thinking. As a result, developers working to combat black hat tactics vastly outnumber any remaining gimmicks.
Customers are smarter than ever before, and they will only get smarter
Not only are search engines becoming smarter, but so are many other things. Visitors are also much more knowledgeable, and as a result, they are much less likely to click on a well-placed advertisement or fill out a survey in exchange for a piece of content. Customers have access to a wide range of alternatives and circumvention strategies, making it difficult for even legitimate businesses to persuade people to pay for the content they produce.
The first step in the black hat strategy is to deceive search engines, but this is just the beginning. The ultimate goal is to persuade a visitor to click on an advertisement or fall victim to a trap on a landing page. Black hat marketers are noticing that their conversion rates are decreasing as web users become more aware of the gimmicks that are primarily designed to exploit them.
The Internet is Evolving in Such a Way That It is Reducing Spam
People dislike spam. Nobody likes being irritated by things like pop-ups, requests for email addresses, and other gimmicky nonsense, which is what the majority of black hat SEOs use. This aversion is deeply ingrained, and as a result, it is unlikely to go away anytime soon. As a result, we should expect that as developments in cyber security and search engine ranking continue, the internet will evolve into a more credible and trustworthy location. Because Google is actively removing spammy tactics, there isn’t much fish left in the pond, and any remaining black hats stick out like a sore thumb as a result.
The Results Do Not Justify the Effort and Risk Involved
There was a time when webmasters and entrepreneurs would spend their days and nights looking for the next hack or strategy to increase the amount of traffic and advertising revenue their websites generated online. These people took exploiting loopholes to the next level, looking for ways to deceive search engines and website visitors to increase their revenue. Strategies like that were successful online seven to ten years ago because there was such a large group of people banding together in back alley black hat forums to share the exploits and strategies they had discovered to circumvent the standard white hat way of doing things, which, as previously stated, is typically much slower in terms of the amount of time it takes to achieve results.
Fast forward to today, and it is clear that, while there is undeniably still a “black hat” component to the internet (particularly about torrents, gambling, adult sites, and the like), such activities have largely been confined to these “bad neighborhoods.” As mentioned in reasons three and four, the majority of people who have engaged in illegal activities in the last ten years have either been apprehended or punished in some way, and as a result, they have moved from black hat to white hat, or at the very least, grey hat. As a result, a very small minority of people wear black hats, further limiting their ability to collaborate with others. Meanwhile, white-hat SEO search engines and agencies are becoming increasingly popular.
It Was Only a Matter of Time Before Something Like This Happened
It should come as no surprise that Google and other search engines have honed their algorithms and business practices to the point where the vast majority of spammy strategies have been eliminated. This is because the rate at which all technologies continue to advance is relatively predictable. Indeed, many black hats who were successful with these methods just five years ago were already acknowledging that they were fortunate to be operating during the internet’s “wild west” era. This was because the internet was still in its early stages at the time.
As we are making our way through 2023 and operating systems continue their trend of locking down all activities within app interfaces, it appears that the days of rogue programmers and shady developers are coming to an end. The second important factor to consider is that legitimate SEO is almost always preferred. As a result, the majority of people who use black hat SEO to gain initial momentum online eventually want to switch to a white hat approach in the long run. Given this, another critical consideration is that legitimate SEO is almost always preferred. Companies like Engage Platform offer legitimate, long-term SEO solutions for their clients. For more information, click here.