To learn about the importance of ethical SEO, you will need to understand the fundamental differences between white hat SEO and black hat SEO. White hat SEO uses legitimate techniques that are endorsed by most search engines.
White hat SEO best practices make your website search-engine friendly by utilizing proper meta descriptions and relevant keywords. Black hat SEO techniques are used to essentially trick the search engines into ranking a website. There are a number of black hat techniques that are employed by incredulous webmasters. However, Google and other search engines usually have the upper hand. The search engine algorithms are constantly being updated to punish individuals who use black hat SEO. One of the main downfalls of using black hat SEO, is that your website can be potentially be blacklisted and banned from the search engine results pages (SERPs). White hat SEO will ensure longevity and potential.
Here are more white hat SEO techniques that you can use ensure your standing in the search engine results.
- Blogging within a fixed schedule. There many opinions when it comes to the frequency that you should update your blog with new content. However, there is one constant variable: staying within a fixed schedule will benefit your blog. Infrequent updates can potentially cause your blog to be deemed irrelevant by the search engines, causing it to slip down in the SERPs. However, blogging too frequently can cause information overload, causing your blog to experience poor retention and engagement rates by the readers and subscribers. Take into consideration the niche of your blog. Blogs that focus on the news will naturally be updated more frequently than other niches. Updating your blog at least 4 times a month is generally a safe bet.
- Include a sitemap. A sitemap is just that – a map that is traceable by the search engines. It allows the search engine spiders to find important links embedded in your website. If you have a particularly large website with many internal links, then it is recommended that you employ more than one sitemap — an XML version just for the search engines and an HTML version for your users.
- Social media signals. Social media has been having a strong presence when it comes to online marketing. A relatively new platform, social media sites like Facebook and Twitter are viable platforms to curate material to relevant individuals. These websites have the potential of driving traffic to your website, engaging customers, and creating brand loyalists.
- Build only high-quality links. Aim for inbound links from websites that have a higher page rank. Understand this – most links from websites that employ white hat SEO are good. However, you want to strive for inbound links from websites that have a higher page rank (PR) or domain authority (DA). Obtaining links from authoritative sites in your relevant industry is one of the best methods of increasing your website’s own authority.