We all know the importance of links, and it is no doubt that link building is one of the most critical skills in the SEO discipline. Learning the methods of building successful, and fruitful links (not black hat link building) across the web entails a variety of abilities such as; networking, sales, content mastery, digital marketing, blog outreaching, and lots more.
Though it sounds like a challenge, link building is definitely a must for generating an increased amount of blog traffic. Because of the difficulty associated with building links, many bloggers and marketers choose to partake in what is known as black hat link-building techniques.
Before I show you some of the black hat link-building practices that can land you on the wrong side of Google, let me take some moments to show you what black hat link building is all about in general.
What is Black Hat Link Building?
The term “black hat” was coined from the scenarios of old western movies, where the bad guys wore black hats and good guys wore white hats.
Having this logic, black hat link building is simply the process of building links with the intent of cheating Google’s algorithms to achieve higher rankings to certain phrases.
These links are generally spammy, and they are likely found on sites or pages that are clearly not optimized for users, as they exist strictly just to leverage numerous links t help pages rank.
Black hat link building goes against webmasters guideline, the rules that Google has established. This is then a clear indication that operating outside Google’s guidelines can easily attract a penalty on your site, gets it demoted, or even an outright ban from the SERPs. The intensity of the punishment depends on the infraction, but in all, they are undesirable for those who seek to build a long-term existence online.
Now you have gotten the basic understanding of what black hat link building is all about, let us see some black hat link building techniques that can attract a Google penalty.
6 Types Of SEO-Harming Black Hat Link Building Techniques
Below are some negative link building tactics that can get your site penalized.
- Blog Comments
Hey! do not get it twisted because blog commenting are actually cool, but bad when done wrongly.
Black hat blog comments are actually designed in mass and point to spun content. If you observe critically, such comments tend to add zero value to the overall conversation, and they are often posted on sites that have no moderations. This is usually easy to detect given from the explanation above.
- Wiki Links
Some years back, a popular black hat link-building technique was to use software to create pages on wiki sites with links pointing to your website or blog. In the real context, the pages created by this software are often low quality and not maintained by anyone. This means that it merely contained spun content that would be flagged by Google speedily.
Bookmarks are basically links on websites like Stumbleupon, Reddit, etc, which enable users to post a link with a short description. Though there is nothing wrong with this method in general, black hat marketers use digital tools to generate massive amounts of bookmarks which are then published on all manner of bookmarking sites and not just the reputable ones. Because of the bad reputation of the sites, the bookmarks were posted on, site owners might end up bearing the consequences.
- Purchased Links
This is possibly one of the most popular black hat link-building techniques going on today. There are thousands of sites out there built to sell links based on their DA, PA, or Page Rank score. Most of these sites paces links on auction with the best quality link going to the highest bidder.
These days, Google is exceptionally in the business of identifying and devaluating paid links.
- Forum Profile Links
Black hat marketers also use software to create various fake accounts in thousands of forum sites and place links of the user’s websites within the profile description. These accounts are an easy way to generate thousands of backlinks.
Today, Google rarely indexes such types of links and has adopted methods for depreciating their value, which then makes it a fruitless pursuit.
- Web 2.0 Profile Links
The term “Web 2.0” is widely used when referring to the gray hat and black hat link building communities. It is used to characterize sites that enable users to create new pages with unique URLs.
It is the same technique used in forum profile link building, but the difference is that it uses more reputable destinations. Though there is nothing wrong with it naturally, when hundreds or thousands of fake accounts are created for building links, it becomes suspicious in the eyes of Google.
Consequences Of Black Hat Link Building
Now, you have known what black hat link building is all about and some of the techniques used, let us now look at the consequences.
It is simple if your site is found guilty of violating Google’s webmaster guidelines, you are likely to be served a Google penalty. The intensity of the offense will dictate the severity of the punishment. This penalty could last for weeks, months, or until the issues are rectified.
So to be on a safe side, simply abstain from any form of black hat link building techniques.