White Hat Practices
White hat practices characterize the recommended and ethical methods that top SEO marketers engage in to optimize the web presence of companies. These practices are the most effective and do not try to cheat the search algorithms in order to achieve high search rankings. The search engines have a system in place to fairly return the most relevant results to search queries. To do so, the search engines set out to create an even playing field where the webpages that have the best chances of satisfying user queries result in the highest spots. Given these conditions, reputable SEO companies can engage in certain recommended white hat "optimization" techniques to strategically build genuine authority, grow relevancy, and encourage higher rankings.
Practices that do try to cheat the algorithms and work around the established rules are considered black hat practices. These techniques are less common now than in the early years of internet marketing and SEO, however, firms without ethical standards still seek out underhanded ways to achieve rankings. Such non-recommended black hat tactics essentially gain results through inauthentic representations of SEO authority and relevance. These poor practices include illegitimate links from link farms and keyword stuffing with invisible text. It is critical to avoid companies that employee such black hat SEO tactics. While they can show results in the short term, these practices will cause serious damage when discovered by search engines and cause major setbacks or removal from rankings. We evaluate SEO vendors to ensure their processes are compliant with search engine standards.