Black hat SEO is not an option
There seems to be an urban myth – or, let’s say, an online forum kind of urban myth – claiming that adult content websites have a free pass regarding the use of Black Hat SEO techniques.
Well, on a recent Google Search Central SEO Office Hours Hangout Livestream, Google’s John Mueller was challenged to comment that “(mis)information” that is being spread on some web forums, claiming that white hat SEO doesn’t work for adult niches. Now, hold on. What is white hat SEO, black hat SEO, and who in the name of Google is John Mueller?
- White hat SEO is the set of practices that develops your page search rankings on a search engine results page (SERP) whilst keeping the reliability of your website by complying with the search engines’ terms of service and guidelines;
- Black hat SEO refers to a set of practices that are used to raise a page’s rank in Search Engine Results Page (SERP) through resources that clearly violate the search engines´ terms of service as expressed on the guidelines;
- John Mueller is a Webmaster Trends Analyst at Google. He works in the tech giant since 2007 and has been doing great work connecting SEO executives to the engineers in Google. Always in the name of Search.
The adult niche and black hat SEO
According to a Search Engine Journal article written by Matt Southern “apparently, there are SEOs spreading “advice” regarding the use of black hat tactics in adult niches” and this idea has been debated in some internet forums.” John Mueller addressed the rumour on the live Google Search Central SEO Office Hours Hangout, last December 4. When confronted with this news, Mueller politely denied them, whilst reminding Google Webmaster Guidelines. Here’s what John Mueller said:
“I can’t suggest that you should use black hat techniques, so from that point of view, I can only point to our guidelines with regards to what we do recommend. (…) I understand that some people might say “oh, well, everyone in my niche is doing it the wrong way therefore I also need to do it that way.” And I don’t know. It might be that there are individuals in special niches where our systems just aren’t picking up the abusive or problematic techniques well enough.”
, Mueller alleged.
For the time being, it’s impossible to predict for how long the use of black hat SEO will go undetected, as Google is improving its systems on a daily basis. So, you better don’t do it at all. “But I need results!”, you may say. Well, for more sustainable results you have to work with someone that is aware of Google’s official documentation and guidelines – and use white hat SEO practices. Let’s see what Mueller has to say about it.
“From my point of view if you want to look at the long run, and not just focus on something that might last a couple of weeks or a couple of months, then I would tend to focus more on what we have documented.”
White Hat SEO: Let’s be honest, please
According to the SEMRush definition, white hat SEO means “implementing techniques to improve a website’s search engine ranking without relying on tricks to undermine a search engine’s algorithm”
So, what does it stands for?
White hat SEO focus on delivering users with relevant and high-quality content that takes user experience into consideration, rather than spammy techniques that are focused on optimizing solo for bots. Without guidelines to follow, the search engine results would be hectic, and the users would be absolutely lost.
Who does benefits from it?
Everyone! Google, site publishers, and users. How? Well, 1) Google search engine can be the favourite digital ecosystem, because users rely on that they can find great content their, 2) site publishers can rank their websites without untrustworthy methods and 3) lastly, users can find what they want to find throughout the organic search.
Remember: Content is king
Nearly 90% of marketing teams use blog posts as a lead generator. Produce content for humans, not bots. Human-centered SEO is key, so create content for humans that are looking for information.
Using the same principle – content rules – you want your content to be both authoritative and relevant so that other sites can refer to it.
User Intent is Google’s best friend forever
Are you a website publisher? So, know this: user intent is what the user is looking for when typing a query in a search engine. According to the same SEMRush article, the intent can “informational, commercial, navigational, and transactional.” The software company based in Boston has some pieces of advice:
- Know what your audience is looking for
- Optimize your content to suit specific keywords
- Using videos and images
2021: Mobile-First Index
We are almost wrapping up this strange year but before we leave keep in mind something important: next Spring, Google’s indexing will switch to mobile-first indexing. Therefore, all of your SEO strategy – preferably based on white hat techniques – should evolve and adapt to new circumstances.
We are to help you out too.
One thing that you can do right now is to use Google’s mobile-friendly test tool to see where you are at the moment. You can also check the speed of your mobile site with the Test My Site tool.
Now, it’s time to rock your SEO strategy!
Want to know more about SEO for your Adult Website?