by ＊Jin Mikami＊
SEO Agencies: Black or White?
Search engine optimization is a popular online marketing strategy, and a lot of businesses have started to optimize their websites for more visibility in the web and in search engines. Businesses have lots of options to choose from when it comes to selecting an SEO agency to work with. Not only do SEO agencies differ in the scope of services that they offer, they also vary, more importantly, in terms of the kind of services that they provide.
Businesses typically have a choice between working with an SEO agency that observes ethical practices in improving website results and one that offers rapid result techniques that in so many cases less than honest and pretty risky in the long term. At one end, an SEO agency can have practices that are ethical and acceptable. On the other hand, an SEO agency can also use techniques that are unethical and barely legal. These kinds of practices differentiate white hat SEO agencies and black hat SEO agencies. Somewhere in the middle is a larger area of grey hat SEO agencies.
While most businesses might think that black hat SEO agencies are nothing but groups of rip offs and frauds, it would be erroneous to say that black hat SEO agencies have less skill than white hat SEO agencies. Also, it is not always that a website gets banned due to black hat SEO techniques. In fact, black hat SEO agencies can very well compete with white hat SEOs. Skilled black hat SEO agencies can also compete ably in tough markets and remain undetected. These tough markets are often where white hat SEO agencies find it difficult to compete.
There are businesses that choose to work with white hat SEO agencies to avoid the risk of their websites getting burned or deleted from search engine indexes. They choose to work with white hat SEO agencies because the latter avoids trickery and always practices responsible and decent ways in proceeding with every stage of an SEO campaign. White hat SEO agencies often focus on two key aspects of website results optimization: links and on-site optimizing. This kind of SEO agencies do not necessarily require programmers but they need people who are ethical and have more than the usual knowledge of internet marketing and technology, business, and usability. Needed skill sets differ with every white hat SEO agency.
While it can be difficult to conform to unpublished terms of service and agreement of different search engines, SEO agencies still have the choice whether they will employ black hat or white hat techniques. In the same manner, businesses also have the choice to work with a black hat or white hat SEO agency.