SEO CONSPIRACY S01E32
What is left of Black Hat SEO in 2020?
I assume where I come from, the black hat world.
But I’ve always been what I call a search engine hacker.
I never needed to use black hat SEO as a revenue stream. I’ve always been interested in it, and I’ve used it in SEO competitions when you got a couple of months to rank on a keyword with no rules. You can negative SEO all the way, but it’s just a personal ethic about the web’s pollution. I’ve tested much stuff, I’ve done it all, and the shortcuts are getting shorter. There’s less and less of them because Google got smarter. After all, penguin and panda disgusted 90% of the people who would try. We have the before panda/penguin and after them. That’s when it all changed, mostly because of links.
We were able, with a Russian tool called Xrunner, to send 2000 links per minute. It was ridiculous.
Today, an aggressive link building would be one link every three days and even one link a day, maybe that’s like high aggressive link building. So imagine, that’s a big difference: from 2000 links a minute to one link every other day. And I don’t see anything different.
You got so many ways to be shady about links. For example, you open up a directory where people submit their links with the content, and you do a cloaked 301 redirect, meaning that the page rank juice of the link is not going towards the site submitted but for the site you want to link.
Today, the only real true black hats are hackers, the people who exploit algorithms’ vulnerabilities. Well, no, there are no algorithmic flaws in the algorithm, there are flaws in the CMS, and they are all public, inject links, inject content, hack the website, etc.
In my opinion, the real black hats are the ones who are doing illegal stuff, hacking websites. Maybe if you don’t destroy the website, you just put a page with all your links. That’s illegal.
90% and even maybe 95% of the dirty spam black hat is made in Russia or around this area of the world. All the rest are just playing around, and after a while, they get disgusted because it works less and less, so they quit, or they start to do something else.
Then you got the worst kind, Kristine, our guest from a couple of weeks ago, call them the Asshats.
What is the asshat by Kristine? It’s the one who uses shady techniques and puts in danger the company, the jobs, and the integrity of the company. You are not 16 years old, living with your parents.
You’ve got to realize the long term damage you’re doing when you’re trying to scam people or google. There’s where it becomes a gray area legally, so you could argue that it’s a black hat, but if deception screws up your brand, your ability to build value over time and everything you’re doing is short term. It’s examples like pop-ups taking over the page, so you thought you landed on a page that was about drinks, and it turns out to be a porn page. Things like that will never allow you to build up a good brand; it’s going to last any particular length of time, I think, and it’s essential to build up a brand, even if you’re starting. I mean, it’s no different. You’ve got to start somewhere.
Repented Black Hat SEO
Even Judith Lewis.
It’s crazy because she started as a black hat but back in the day when you put white text on the white page, so that’s like the early 2000s, and she started to have a public face. Public talks and all, so she invented this chocolate influencer persona to do that magic trick while cleaning out the black hat stuff. People were looking at the chocolate thing, then this chocolate thing became real, she became an authentic influencer as a chocolate blogger, and she’s the queen of it.
She tells the story of how she started as a black hat, but while she was cleaning out the footprint of the black hat stuff that was pretty shady, she became the chocolate diva, and everybody is cleaning up. Still, because I always was a search engine hacker and not trying to make money, monetizing the black hat part, I don’t care. I’m not ashamed of it because I can look at myself in the mirror, being straight up with myself, and nobody can find something in my footprint and trust me the way they track me, they would have seen it by now.
So play around. It’s fun to beat the algorithms but try to do it in a search engine hacker way instead of just this ridiculous short term quick win black hat to feel sexy. When you’re going to be five years on from now, you’re going to be ashamed of what you did, and you wish you didn’t do it. That’s the pure truth think about it: every single person standing for the elections and stuff these days, there’s somewhere a picture of them in the past, you know.
What you’re doing can leave a lot of footprints behind. The problem is in life, you can only look back, so we’re old enough now that we can look in the past, but all those youngsters are listening to us, it sounds very sexy, and it’s fun, but trust me if there’s only one lesson to learn from that experience is that if you can, I’m not ashamed to look back because what I did was just proper it was the appropriate way to do this black hat.
But when you want to make money and fair enough, if you’re going to be good enough, well, you got to find the flaws.
Try to do something that’s going to be memorable and leave a legacy, and if your heritage is just spam, you haven’t done yourself a lot of justice. You might as well find something better to do.
Karma is a b****, remember.
And bites you in the ass every single time.
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