Nov 15, 2008

The Black Hats v. The Google SEO Guide

As you should know, Google came out with a guide for effective SEO. If you didn't hear about it, look down a few posts and check it out.

Well the black hats are none too impressed. From SEO Black Hat:

...What if, instead, we did a case study?

On the one hand we will take a new site and follow Google’s SEO Starter Guide to the letter. We will limit ourselves only to the techniques discussed therein. (Note: there is virtually nothing in the starter guide about link building).

On the other hand, we will take a new site and do the EXACT OPPOSITE of every point of Google’s Quality Guidelines.

So, in the 2nd case:

* We will Make the pages primarily for search engines, not for users. We will deceive our users and present different content to the search engines than we display to the users (known as cloaking)

* We will Embrace tricks intend to improve search engine rankings. A good rule of thumb is that we would never want a competitor to know what we are doing. Another test is “Does this help my users? Would I do this if search engines didn’t exist?” The answer will be an emphatic “NO!” on both points.

* We will participate in link schemes designed to increase our site’s Page Rank. In particular, we will link to other web spammers and “bad neighborhoods”.

* We will use unauthorized computer programs to submit pages.

* We will employ both hidden text and hidden links.

* We will cloak and use sneaky redirects.....

This is a topic thread to keep an eye on. If the guidelines were more an instruction manual for the average SEO to succeed, then it's a good thing as well. If by publishing the guidelines it means that Google is officially beginning to crack down on Black Hat SEO tactics, then it means a sea change for SEO. If black hat tactics are blocked and not allowed to succeed, then SEO has changed forever.

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