White Hat SEO Techniques, There are None

white hate seo techniquesAnother SEO article in response to a question I got asked recently.  This question was about SEO and more specifically what White Hat SEO techniques I use.

Friend: “Adam, what are your White Hat SEO Techniques? What tools do you use?

Me: “There are None!”

You might think this is a strange response but that is the reality for SEO companies.  I do mean that, there are virtually zero White Hat SEO techniques marketing and search engine optimization companies use to rank sites and build links.

Yes, White Hat SEO techniques do exist and people do use them.   However, most of them are ridiculously time consuming.  This includes guest blogging, submitting to article directories, social bookmarking, web directory submissions, straight up link requests, social media, etc.  You could do all this yourself and do it all manually, meaning you don't have a computer program or bot do it.  That's just not the way a lot of companies operate though and most will automate a lot of these tasks.

Big SEO agencies and firms that have a plethora of SEO tools and staff will still use programs to speed these tasks up.  The reality is it's a pain-in-the-ass and they can spend money on SEO tools and software to do it quicker.  The real question is why wouldn't you do the same thing?  Even if you feel it's Gre yHat SEO or Black Hat SEO, it's what people do.  Nobody is playing fair and it's not like it is a secret.  I'll give you an example.

Lately I've been working on a local SEO campaign for a client.  When I did a link analysis on the competitor ranking in the number 1 spot in Google I saw the company had a bunch of paid links in directory sites with the anchor text for the keyword phrase.  Technically it is against Google's guidelines to accept money for a link or pay for links, but why would the SEO agency or the company ranking 1st care?  They ranked the site 1st and did their job and the company is gaining business because of the favorable search ranking.  Even it is a Greyhat SEO or even Blackhat SEO technique it's not like Google has caught them.  I honestly doubt they ever will.  It's been at the number 1 spot for quite awhile and lots of people buy links.  It's been going on since the beginning of SEO practically and even the people in the 2nd and 3rd spot paid for links.  So, what am I going to do?  Recommend to this client we buy links from these directories and other sites to rank quicker, but I will explain Google's guidelines to him.

Get this through your head, just because Google says they don't like something or certain Blackhat SEO technique will not work, that actually is not always the case. Google tells you how they wished everyone acted and they wish the Google search engine worked.  The way Google's algorithm actually works can vary a lot from what they say and can be quite frustrating for those new to the world of SEO.  Follow all of Google's BS advice and you will not get anywhere.  Most professional SEOs are going to tell you the same thing.

I will be honest a lot of the tools and techniques I use are not considered “Whitehat SEO.”  I can't pull data in any other way without using some Google trickery.  If you read my article on “6 Questions to ask a Search Engine Optimizer Before you Hire Them” you will understand why.

The big issue with Google is that they are out there in California holding hands telling themselves how awesome they are since they build self-driving cars and Google Glass.  The believe everyone is in this internet thing together in a hippie commune and people will help each other out with links when necessary.  That is never the case and if Google search engineers, especially Matt Cutts, wanted a reality check they should step out of their Google bubble and get out in the ‘real world' of trying to build and rank a website.  They should also go read articles and posts that rank in Google instead of looking at fucking numbers all day, since nobody gives a shit about your algorithm.  They only care when it doesn't work.

You might think this is jaded, but I am only trying to convey what reality is.  If you want to compete I'd recommend you go out there and see what SEO Tools and Software you could buy to speed-up your link building.  There are White Hate SEO techniques just… nobody sticks to them.

Link Requests are really Annoying

link requestsRecently I've been getting a lot of Link Requests from various people and content marketing companies.  While I can understand why people do this and why people will ask for a link, sometimes it just gets really annoying and is a waste of my time.

Some people might be wondering “What are Link Requests?”  Essentially a Link Request is when someone asks to place a link on your website.  Most of the time people offer to guest post or blog in exchange for placing a link in the article.  In my opinion this is a perfectly fair practice and Google doesn't have a problem with it.  (As long as the article is reasonable and wasn't written by someone who isn't a native English speaker from some far off Asian country.)

However, what I have a problem with is when I get email Link Requests like this;

Dear Adam,

Hello, my name is Jimmy. I'm the webmaster and editor of
Shitty-Affiliate-Laden-Web-Hosting-Site.com. I'm writing to plug our newest article
on our blog: 101 [Shitty] Google+ Pages for Web Hosting News and Tips. I
thought that you and your site's audience might be interested in having a
look. Check it out:

“Link Goes Here”

I would appreciate if you could link to our article if you find it of
interest. And please feel free to e-mail me with any questions or suggestions
for the list.

Thanks,
Jimmy

What did this guy do wrong?

First it's clear he spent too much time writing his horrible article instead of actually reading or looking at my blog or anything I've worked on.  He doesn't point out any content that I've written that he likes nor does he give me a compelling reason to link to the shitty article.  So he really doesn't know who my audience is.  Second, why the fuck would I send visitors to look at a blog post covering 101 Google+ pages about web hosting on an affiliate laden site?  Seriously, do you people think I haven't been around the block and consequently that I am a idiot?  The site this guy runs offers little value outside of the fact that he makes money on affiliate links.  It's not even like this site posts reviews or offers good web hosting advice on the blog.  He's probably one of those people at Affiliate Summit I would have met and largely ignored.  By the way nobody has the fucking time to look through so many social media pages on a blog post.  In addition a lot of those Google+ pages didn't cover web hosting or only did on occasion.

I've changed around a few things but the email is basically intact.  I did add the URL though, which I thought was a nice touch.  🙂

My reply to this Link Request was, “Not sure why I would link to the article.”  Since the domain name for the website was 4 letters and when I checked the domain history it was clear they had bought it from someone, I casually asked how much they paid for it.  Since it's been several days and have not had a reply, I know I am not getting one.

This didn't surprise me actually as “Jimmy” probably didn't send out the email but had a Virtual Assistant (VA) do it.  Pretty common for ad laden sites and SEO (search engine optimizers) do farm out these emails.  However, if by chance you do get a reply I recommend you reply back.  Not only did they make me annoyed sending the email but they've made me pissed even more since they didn't respond.  Why would I ever work with them in the future?

Let me make this clear to my readers and anyone who is going to send Link Requests my way.  I DO NOT link to sites that are just affiliate link wastelands.   If you contact me straight up asking for a link there better be a good fucking reason or you will get an email that will make Satan happy.

Have you ever gotten annoying Link Requests?  Do you respond or not respond?  Is it good to be nice or make so that these people never want to contact you again?