In two prior posts, we discussed the difference between website ranking and website optimization and how, specifically, Google ranks well-optimized websites. A high website ranking is invaluable, and Google is constantly working to refine its algorithm so only the most relevant websites with high-quality, engaging, and well-written content appear on the first page results.
For more information about Google, read this quick "Google Lesson."
Unfortunately, the stakes are so high that many website owners have relied upon nefarious "Black Hat SEO" techniques to achieve a high ranking. With its latest algorithm update, Google Penguin, Google attempted to limit the rankings of Black Hat websites that violate Google's Webmaster Guidelines. When Google Penguin was introduced on April, 24, 2012, Google proved, more then ever before, that its main objective was to offer its users only high-quality content.
Now, with each algorithm update, Google will continue to limit Black Hat SEO techniques and reward the opposite: White Hat SEO.
To understand the importance of Google Penguin, it's helpful to understand the difference between the "Black Hat SEO" and this legitimate, natural form of website optimization: "White Hat SEO."
Black Hat SEO is essentially a set of techniques that certain webmasters employ to trick search engines. Without actually creating relevant and engaging content, Black Hat SEO allows a website to appear on the first page rankings. Thankfully, this practice is increasingly irrelevant, but Black Hat SEO has proved effective in the past. Techniques such as keyword stuffing, link schemes, and the creation of duplicate content continue to haunt the Internet, compromising businesses and personal users alike. If you've searched for a legitimate product or service and landed on a spammer's site--well, then, you've probably been victimized by Black Hat SEO, too.
To a search engine like Google, the only acceptable form of SEO is organic or natural website optimization--or White Hat SEO. An experienced organic SEO specialist studies Google's algorithms to learn exactly what the search engine prefers, and optimizes websites to meet Google's exact requirements.
The key to organic website optimization is quality: a well-designed website and engaging, relevant content. This is why White Hat SEO professionals rejoiced with the release of Google Penguin. The new algorithm ensured, more then ever before, that Black Hat SEO would not sway rankings. With each successive Google algorithm update, we will hopefully continue to see that the only effective way to achieve a high ranking is natural website optimization.
At Stepmans PC, we are very proud of our intimate knowledge of Google's evolving algorithms. In one way, the job is quite simple: prioritizing quality above all else. But the algorithm can present some complicated challenges. Fortunately, we've met these challenges. By continually studying the algorithm, we have managed to maintain a consistent high ranking for our client's websites. Regardless of the algorithm, our websites continue to perform.
If you're considering hiring an SEO professional to optimize your website, please read our handy SEO Company Checklist. And make sure your SEO professional has a first-hand knowledge of Google Penguin and Google's ever-evolving algorithm.