SEO is not rocket science, agree, still there is some science in all the SEO tips and tricks that we use for website promotion. A thin line divides both still there is no certain definition as to which are white hat and which are black hat SEO techniques. Can someone define exactly which are white and black hat SEO techniques?

White Hat SEO involves optimizing web page content (paragraphs, heading, images ...), web page tags (Title tag, description, alt attributes ...) and web site components (domain/ webpage naming conventions, internal linking structure ...). White Hat SEO adheres explicitly to the search engine's Quality Content Guideline, except the parts that encourage off-site manipulation (link swapping with other relevant web page owners). Successful White Hat is accomplished when web pages rank highly in competitive keyphrase markets.

Black Hat SEO manipulates the search engine in an extreme fashion. In today's world, link schemes seem to be trendy tactics although techniques such as hidden text, cloaking and multiple doorway pages still can be effective by blackhats when cleverly deployed.

Most (say 85%) of all SEO are Grey Hat and don't often know any better. Usually things like keyphrase stuffing in footers / headers, link swapping, blog commenting, directory listings, signature spamming ... are common grey hat methods.

Hi ellenwillss
See black hat technique are those which are not genuine or bad technique which are not in the guideline of Google like purchasing link, reciprocal linking, hiding the links in background etc and white head technique is genuine technique like taking back links from relevant sites etc.

White hat-technology use manual work for onpage and offpage

But black hat-technology use automatic softwares

Black Hat SEO : Its Unethical way to promote a website .It totally deal with the source code of the web page. Main Techniques are : Cloaking,Keyword Stuffing etc.
White Hat SEO : Very ethical way to optimize a website ,use of manual methods to promote a web site .Like : Directory Submissions,Social Book marking forum posting etc.

... white head technique is genuine technique like taking back links from relevant sites etc.

... link building strategies are performed in an effort to positively influences off-site ranking factors. The idea here is that if your web page has relevant web pages linking to it then it must have some value for the related keywords. To manipulate this concept by artificially amassing backlinks is in fact grey hat to black hat SEO depending on the extremity and deployment tactic of the ranking technique. For example, soliciting for link in emails is grey hat, swapping links with other webmaster is grey hat, buying links from other web pages is considered black hat ...

Unless a link appears to have been placed naturally from one webmaster who thought your rersource was worth offering his visitors, then it is not white hat technique. A white hat link building technique is link baiting. That is when you write content that is so compelling, of such value or of such authority that webmasters, on their own accord, decide to link to your stuff.

... White Hat SEO : Very ethical way to optimize a website ,use of manual methods to promote a web site .Like : Directory Submissions,Social Book marking forum posting etc.

Looks to me like 99.2% of the 50,000 directories out there are for the sole purpose of generating traffic so as to click advertisements on the directory site. Manually or automatically listing to these dumpster directories has no purpose for Internet visitor. A web page will not receive any traffic from these lists of links. The links do count as backlinks but the search engine realizes they are of little value. There are services out there that will list your web page to 10,000 directories for $19.99. Does any webmaster who care about their content really want to do this type of off-site manipulation.

Forum posting for the purpose of generating links and signature links is not right either. A forum is a place to involve yourself in a meaningful discussion and not a place built for you to dump links. This attitude of using forums to build backlinks has contributed to the de-valueing of forum links to the point that they are of practically no value to either the visitor nor the search engine.

White hat SEO is all that is allowed by the search engines.
Black hat SEO is all the sneaky strategies to trick the search engines.


as the name suggested

White SEO - something done in ethical way to improve your Rank in search results

Black Hat SEO- something done in un ethical way to make spiders/crawler confused

I agree with candafred, also add follow
If we not use of black hat SEO techniques while being a so called "white hat."
The question at hand is can a white hat SEO use some black hat tactics and still call themselves a white hat SEO?
As the conversation went on, the discussion went into definitions, as you can imagine.
What is black hat? Is it hacking? Is it stealing? Is it just using automated tools? Is it buying links? Writing a ton of content that isn't quality?
At the same time, some say that learning from black hats make you a better white hat SEO. Moderator, iamlost, said they are "pushing the envelope" and you can learn from that. But is it the black hat who is "pushing the envelope" or just the savvy marketers? Some black hats don't do anything smart, but rather use brute force. While others think up new techniques that can often not be classified as black hat at all and thus maybe they aren't black hat.

The White Hat approach to SEO focuses on using clean code and proven optimization techniques, while avoiding all issues that could result in a penalty from a search engine. Penalties are commonly placed on Web sites for a wide range of infractions. Most penalties result in reduced rank positions for a site. Penalties for egregious violations may result in the banning of a site, which is the complete removal of a site from a search engine’s database. If your Web site is banned from a major search engine like Google, you risk losing about 60% or the traffic to your site from Google and affiliated search engines such as AOL and Netscape.

The Black Hat approach to SEO focuses on doing “whatever it takes” to achieve a higher ranking position. This usually means an intentional disregard for search engine rules in order to achieve an advantage over other sites ranked for the same keywords. Black hat techniques are synonymous with search engine spam, which is basically any method intended to artificially boost a site’s rankings and specifically disallowed in the search engine guidelines.

When writing your web copy, if you sneak in 8-10 keywords: White hat seo.
You create a web page within your site consisting of nothing but your keywords: Black hat.

When confused just ask yourself: Is this of any use to anybody?
I do wonder though how hats got into this picture :/

Hi CanadaFred:

I must protest your categorization of forum postings, directory postings, and blog commenting as "grey hat"; in other words (if I understand correctly) a less-than-ethical method that borders on, but is not, black hat SEO.

I do not feel these methods, used in moderation, are unethical. Directory postings are used less frequently now, so the person who does them is rising in the rankings. Blog and forum commenting are unethical only when you don't submit relevant comments, but just put up something like "Hi there!" or a link to your web site. Otherwise, they are perfectly ethical.

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