White Hat SEO vs Black Hat SEO

If you identify as a white hat SEO or black hat SEO, you’re choosing to operate at a reduced level of intelligence.

Why?

Watch this video and I’ll explain:

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel Now –>

Remember:

Labeling yourself as a “white hat” or “black hat” SEO only serves to stop you from developing a complete working knowledge of SEO.

So the next time you see anyone label themselves as a white hat SEO or black hat SEO…

…make sure you tell them they’re an idiot and send this video to them to prove it.

38 Responses

  1. Grant
    7.24.2020

    There’s a big difference in creating and promoting content that people naturally want to link to, content that deserves links, to artificially getting links through guest posting, buying links or PBNs, for example. It’s like a scientific publication getting citations from other scientists. Quality research, like quality content, will naturally get ‘votes.’

    Yes, it’s good to talk about this, but I think the post in itself is ironically too black and white – what comes across strongly is that the intention is rather to get a reaction, to be controversial to get mileage from people naturally sharing and linking to this content, funny that ;)

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 24th, 2020 at 12:54 pm

      Yes but creating content that people want to link to is part of any holistic link building strategy because that is what the algorithm wants and usually what your expense budget wants as well.

      If you create crappy content, you have to spend more time money and effort on link building than you do if you create market leading content – but even that still requires outreach and link building to get the ball rolling.

  2. Patrick
    7.23.2020

    Well Done Matthew! I understand the want for something to be done right and proper, however the only way to do that is build content and naturally grow which would take years without SEO, SEO in itself is manipulating and optimizing for googles algorithms, so my perspective is there is no white hat which would make black hat irrelevant. be smart, look long term and never stop creating great content.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 24th, 2020 at 10:01 am

      Yes, you’re right! Let’s hope your comment helps to open eyes!

  3. Ian
    7.23.2020

    If you identify as BH or WH you a timetravaler from 2013.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 24th, 2020 at 10:03 am

      Haha you’ll be surprised to know how many time-travellers I have met then!

  4. Neil C
    7.23.2020

    A video about absolutely nothing…

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 24th, 2020 at 10:23 am

      So why did you leave a comment?

  5. Erika
    7.23.2020

    I read your emails and blogposts regularly because you constantly put out awesome content. I took seo for granted initially and relied solely on social media traffic, it works and it works well but eventually, your social media account can be shut down at any moment and along goes with it all the traffic.

    I started reading your blog about 5 years ago and i have to say that you are one of the most honest blogger that I have come accross and always look forward to your content.

    Thanks for another great share!

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 24th, 2020 at 10:58 am

      Hey Erika. Thank you for reading my blog.
      I wish you well!

  6. J
    7.3.2020

    Hi Matt

    I like your stuff but please sort out your typo which really sticks out – it should be ‘human morals’ and not “human morale’s”.

    Good luck!

    J

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 6th, 2020 at 9:58 am

      Good shot! Thanks, J!

  7. Frank Morrell
    7.2.2020

    Basically, it really does not make much difference what the client is looking for, as rule, most of the SEO agencies I have had dealings with, take your money, put something up and then continue to take your money month after month while doing nothing, after the initial burst of activity.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 3rd, 2020 at 10:22 am

      Hmm… you haven’t found any good agency then, because this is not how we work!
      SEO is a constant process that requires Hard Work, Time, and Investissement to be successful!

  8. Mike Guess
    7.1.2020

    Absolutely this. You do what’s best for you and your clients today because who knows what tomorrow brings, we can only ride the waves.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 3rd, 2020 at 10:49 am

      You’re right Mike! No need to labeling yourself…

  9. Dixon
    7.1.2020

    Even I agree :)
    Love the headline too.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 1st, 2020 at 1:19 pm

      Thank you! ;)

  10. Matt John
    7.1.2020

    Great post think a few have missed the context of it but hey.

    I always say to my clients as I often get asked by people who know absolutely nothing about SEO at all if I do, “White Hat” or “Black Hat” I’ve always said that I’m Grey Hat lol. Because the truth is you need both. I like to do the nicely white hat side of getting things looking good and all right then unleash the black hat side to push it up.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 1st, 2020 at 12:21 pm

      And I think this is exactly what anyone should do!
      Mix both strategies to get better results!

  11. Birpal Bhinder
    6.30.2020

    Thank You for information, It is short but very informative video.
    I too believe SEO is whole a black hat game, If we are doing an SEO (Creating Links) by self / software that strictly means it is black hat. White hat no where exits unless it is a big brand like amazon or google.
    So i believe we should keep practicing SEO and dont bother about these stupid labels.
    But make sure you shouldn’t unfollow googles guidelines, As far as you are in the guidelines you are rocking,

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 1st, 2020 at 12:30 pm

      Exactly, we should focus on what matters and not on “stupid labels” that stop people from getting great results!

  12. AllHats and BANK
    6.30.2020

    100% agree – There is no “blackhat or whitehat”.

    So many idiots – The Google propaganda machine is working and many “professional SEOs” have bought in.

    Many idiots that are happy to slam “blackhat tactics” publically in Facebook groups, but still do “outreach” or “content marketing” to… wait a minute… get “links”… absolute clowns.

    Same clowns chase the speaking circuit to then push their “whitehat tactics” as gospel.

    Google the ADVERTISING COMPANY that harvests and sells your data making all its money from selling Ads for obscene profit is what people are trying to be on the “right side” of, it’s hilarious.

    I stopped engaging with SEO publically, happy to be making money testing and trying everything.

    Unfortunately, the industry is now full of people happy to “shame” anyone doing it differently. Jumping on the soapbox and tell you how “you’re wrong” if you do it differently… and that they’re a “right” and “wrong” like Google are the police.

    It’s better to keep your head down and bank.

    Also worth noting, most outspoken SEOs on this topic are employed by big companies on an average salary to make other people money…

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 1st, 2020 at 12:43 pm

      You’re totally right!
      Keep up the good word and don’t listen to others!

  13. Matthew Woodward
    6.30.2020

    If your friend does link building, he is not white hat.

  14. Serge
    6.30.2020

    I choose White hat. Thank you for all.

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 30th, 2020 at 8:00 pm

      So you won’t be doing any link building?

  15. Martin Sand
    6.30.2020

    Finally! I so I agree on this. There seem to be an influx of “white hat” seo services selling guest post /outreach campaigns and while maybe one can argue that you pay for the time and that the links themselves are not paid for, in most cases the publisher will get paid. The white hat term is simply used to not scare off serious business owners who don’t grasp the link building concept.

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 30th, 2020 at 8:01 pm

      Yeah there’s no such thing as white hat link building because link building is “black hat” if you subscribe to that theory.

      • Martin Sand
        July 1st, 2020 at 12:59 pm

        Exactly. Death to the whole white hat/black hat term. We do SEO. Period.

  16. Admiral Obvious
    6.30.2020

    Yes it may be pointless in the grand scheme of things, but I guess Matt obviously doesn’t understand WHY people might label themselves which makes this video rather ironic.

    If a customer is looking for SEO services and has heard the terms white hat or black hat then this is going to affect their own searches and who they choose to hire. If the client has decided they only want to do everything legit, then they will be explicitly looking for a white hat SEO, oblivious to what it actually means and what difference it will actually make.

    The SEO person may well use both techniques, but wants to attract a certain type of clients, so markets himself accordingly.

    The same logic applies to many other industries in one way or another. A builder will likely list certifications or memberships on his website to attract clients who are looking for those phrases, but it probably makes no difference on his ability to do the job.

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 30th, 2020 at 8:06 pm

      Oh I get it.

      I get that SEO has reached the point that we’ve told so many meaningless lies, that now clients use those lies to start their search and measure the value of an agency.

      You cannot compare a “Certification” or a “Membership” to meaningless terms and social constructs that have been applied to an emotionless algorithm.

      I wonder how many agencies that rank for “white hat seo agency” did that without any link building.

      And it doesn’t trouble you that the industry created meaningless terms which have now leaked into the minds of those that don’t understand?

      I assume any agency that ranks for “white hat seo agency” does zero link building? I wonder how agencies rank for “white hat link building” without link building.

    • Brian
      July 1st, 2020 at 12:15 pm

      So it’s ok to masquerade under the guise of being “white hat” to make the sale? That sounds pretty black hat to me.

  17. Yohaig
    6.30.2020

    Matthew, I agree with you because any form of link building goes against Google’s guidelines.

    White hat SEOs that build links with money terms in their anchor text are no different than Black hat SEOs.

    To be within Google’s guidelines you need to do content marketing but let the other side decide on how they will link to you.

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 30th, 2020 at 8:07 pm

      Exactly and how many SEO’s do you know that do that?

    • Brian
      July 1st, 2020 at 12:14 pm

      Absolutely. Furthermore, if you’re creating content using keyword research with the intent of ranking for a particular term, that’s search manipulation… Thus, you’re doing something “black hat” whether you’re building links or not.

  18. safavi
    6.30.2020

    Great post , thank you very much

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 30th, 2020 at 8:07 pm

      No problem!

What are your thoughts?

* Name, Email, Comment are Required
353 Shares
Share340
Tweet13
Share