A good percentage of our clients at Captain Jack Communications come to us because of our high search engine ranking results. We are one of the only search engine optimization (SEO) companies around that not only deliver high rankings, but freely share hundreds of our rankings freely and publicly on our Search Engine Rankings page.
When talking about SEO techniques, you will oftentimes hear reference to “hats.” No, this doesn’t mean your website is cold – a “hat” is a category of search engine techniques and practices. The most common are: white hat, black hat and grey hat.
The most basic definition for each of the hats is simple: white hat = accepted/compliant techniques, black hat = unethical or techniques that exploit vulnerabilities, and grey hat = techniques that are in the middle, or techniques that might be considered not quite ethical but not quite spamming.
White Hat Techniques
The most simplest of white hat techniques include such common-sense items as writing good content, utilizing the title, description and keyword tags, plus using alt tags for your images. There is an old saying that “content is king” and this is especially true when dealing with effective SEO.
Besides simply content and page coding, other things can be done to increase your search engine rankings without fear of getting banned by Google or the other engines. The second-most important item about SEO are quality back-links. Back-links are links to your web site from other websites. You can do this in many ways including asking other sites to link to you, paying for a Yahoo business listing, or signing up for accounts on different web sites and social networks and then linking back to your site.
Writing articles on your topic is another good way to generate back-links. By writing articles and publishing them on places like ezinearticles.com, you can include a link to your website in the footer of the article. When other people post your article on their website, that footer block remains intact, giving you another link to your site.
Black Hat Techniques
Black hat techniques are generally regarding as unethical and dangerous if you get caught using them. An example would be somehow tricking a web site spider into listing your site higher through some exploit. Another black-hat trick is to use white text on a white background with keywords, or using CSS to hide text from view, but make it readable to search engines. Once exposed, Google oftentimes bans domain names using black hat techniques forever.
Grey Hat Techniques
Grey hat SEO techniques fall between the two extremes. An example of grey hat SEO might be paying for links on a “link farm” website. This shouldn’t be confused with paying for a listing on Yahoo. There are services out there who will sell you a block of links from different PageRank sites for a flat or monthly fee. These are extremely frowned upon and might also get you banned from Google.
Using duplicate content from another site is another grey-hat technique that could get you in trouble. If you copy content from other sites and paste it into your own, you should be worried about not only copyright, but getting dinged for duplicate content. Play it safe – just don’t do it.
SEO at Captain Jack Communications
At Captain Jack Communications (CJC) we use a variety of methods to help our clients get to the top of the search engines. We start with the basics (content and meta tags) and expand to link building, article writing, and other methods and techniques to help sites get found and ranked on Google, Yahoo and Bing. We also monitor our listings to make sure our efforts are achieving results or if we need to reevaluate what we have done.
Some places charge thousands of dollars a month to “help” you with SEO. Before you agree to start a monthly plan with another service, why not give us a try. You’ll be glad you did.