Black Hat SEO VS White Hat SEO – What’s the difference and which is better?

It’s a question that we see a lot, especially when people have been looking for assistance with their website for a while and have used sites like and

What is the difference between Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO and which is better?

In this video, I talk about the key differences between the two SEO approaches and provide examples and the pros and cons.

Let’s delve a bit deeper into the differences between these two approaches to SEO.

What is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)?

It helps if we all start on the same page. For those who are unfamiliar or unacquainted, Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a crucial aspect of digital marketing. It helps businesses improve their online visibility and attract more traffic to their websites. However, there are two distinct approaches to SEO that are often discussed: black hat and white hat SEO.

Black Hat SEO?

Black hat SEO involves using techniques that aim to manipulate search engine algorithms in order to achieve higher rankings. These tactics are often considered unethical or even illegal and can result in penalties or bans from search engines.

Examples of black hat SEO techniques include:

  • Keyword stuffing: This involves overusing keywords or phrases in content, meta tags, and URLs in an attempt to rank higher for those keywords.

  • Cloaking: This involves showing different content to search engines and users, with the aim of manipulating search rankings.

  • Paid links: This involves buying links from other websites to boost search rankings, rather than earning links organically through high-quality content and outreach.

  • Hidden text or links: This involves hiding text or links on a web page, making them invisible to users but still visible to search engine crawlers.

White Hat SEO?

White hat SEO, on the other hand, involves using ethical techniques to improve search rankings. These techniques focus on creating high-quality content, optimizing for user experience, and building genuine relationships with other websites.

Examples of white hat SEO techniques include:

  • Quality content creation: This involves creating content that is informative, engaging, and relevant to the target audience.

  • Keyword research and optimization: This involves researching keywords and incorporating them into content and meta tags in a natural and meaningful way.

  • On-page optimization: This involves optimizing page titles, meta descriptions, and other on-page elements to improve search visibility and user experience.

  • Link building: This involves earning high-quality backlinks from other websites through outreach, networking, and creating valuable content.

Which is better?

While black hat SEO may provide quick results, it is not a sustainable or long-term solution. In fact, it can do more harm than good in the long run by damaging a website’s reputation and credibility. In contrast, white hat SEO may take longer to show results, but it is a reliable and effective way to improve a website’s ranking and establish a strong online presence.

Grey Hat SEO?

It’s worth noting that some SEO techniques may fall into a gray area between black hat and white hat. For example, guest blogging can be a legitimate white hat tactic, but if it involves low-quality content or paid placements, it can become a black hat practice.

Ultimately, businesses should prioritize white hat SEO practices to build a solid foundation for their online presence and ensure long-term success. By focusing on providing value to their audience and following ethical guidelines, they can achieve sustainable growth and establish a trustworthy reputation in their industry.

Now, let’s explore some useful resources for learning more about black hat and white hat SEO.


Ubersuggest is a FREE chrome extension and a powerful SEO tool that shows you keywords monthly search volume, CPC & competition data. The Ubersuggest extension will not only provide you with insightful data related to a specific keyword query on Google™ but also on sites like YouTube™, Amazon™ & more.


Moz is a leading SEO software company that offers a range of resources on SEO best practices, including a beginner’s guide to SEO and a guide to white hat vs. black hat SEO.

Search Engine Land: 

Search Engine Land is a popular news and information website for the search marketing industry. They offer a range of articles and resources on SEO, including a guide to white hat vs. black hat SEO.

Google Search Central: 

Google Search Central is the official source of information from Google on how to improve website visibility in search results. They offer a range of guides and resources on SEO best practices, including a guide to creating high-quality sites.


Backlinko is an SEO-focused blog that offers in-depth articles and guides on a range of SEO topics, including white hat link building and keyword research.

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