SEO Consultants – Good vs. Evil SEO

Coral Gables SEO consultants are a dime a dozen, but the true test is simple: Did the agency rank number one for the keywords you entered in your online search?  If so, don’t sign just yet. It’s important that your understand the overall process, objectives and what to expect.

What is white hat SEO vs. black hat SEO, and why should you care?

White hat SEO – think “Organic, Holistic and Relevant” content. White hat SEO is a strategy used for having your website rank higher organically by using tried and true SEO techniques and strategies. White hat SEO basically follows the Google rules for best practices. The search engine is considered the authority in the SEO realm. Some white hat techniques include writing good content that is engaging and that makes users want to share your content – resulting in links back to your online real estate.

This is just 80 of over 200 search engine ranking factors and different techniques that need to be set in motion before the algorithms start to make a connection to the online property. With the right strategies and patience you should start to see the page(s) start to rank slowly and “organically.”
Positives: Gradually your pages should start to rank higher, turning Google into your friend.
Negatives: May take a very long time, but remember, good things come to those who wait.

What is black hat SEO?

Black hat SEO – Think link farms, content written for robots and not usersIt is basically the opposite of white hat SEO in the sense that you are not following Google’s best practices. For example, you might purchase hundreds of links to point back to your website by a link farm. Or you might write content stuffed with keywords that are not intended for users, lacking anything an average reader might want to see, or need to know regarding their search query . This is a practice referred to as cloaking.

Positives : You might be able to get pages to rank high, quickly and temporarily
Negatives: Your website could be penalized and banned by Google  <–(a very, very bad thing that can have life-long consequences for your brand)

Unfortunately SEO consultants may implement these black hat SEO practices for a quick buck and never even tell their clients. I have heard stories by clients who spent thousands of dollars on SEO optimization and have hired a shady SEO consultant that works in the “dark side,” only to get their site banned or dropped from Google for bad black hat SEO practices.

How can you know which Coral Gables SEO consultants to trust? You don’t, but what you need to do is educate yourself, learn the basics, and always ask for references. Understand the overall SEO picture and ask the right questions. Also, a rule of thumb should be if you hear anyone tell you a about a fly-by-night success story recently, question their practices. For more resources on SEO beginner basics check out MOZ and Matt Cutt’s blog for more.