There are two types of SEO; white hat SEO and black hat SEO, unfortunately the latter of the two has given the SEO industry a bad name. Google recognised this was happening and so released the algorithm that saw high ranked websites drop off like flies due to the bad practises.
Black Hat SEO
This term is used to describe techniques used to get higher search ranking in an unethical way. These techniques were used to achieve short-term gains for long term problems.
Many of the techniques used are actually legitimate however they were over used to the point of creating a bad user experience for the end user. The most common techniques overused were:
Doorway pages are simple pages visible by search engines in an attempt to get the website ranked higher, they contain certain keywords or phrases that the website wants to rank organically high for. Once the user lands on a doorway page, they are immediately redirected to the real website.
Google have become more intuitive and these pages are being ignored and sometimes banned from search results altogether.
This technique was used to overload keywords onto a Web page so that search engines will read the page as being relevant in a search.
Because search engines scan Web pages for the words that are entered into the search criteria by the user, the more times a keyword appears on the Web page the more relevancy the search engine will assign to the page in the search results.
When Hummingbird was released it ranked websites based on semantics rather than keywords and started penalising websites for keyword stuffing. The best practise for the appropriate amount of keywords on any particular page is using a keyword 4-6 times in 300-500 word content.
Every inbound link to your website is counted as a vote in your favour, However Black Hat SEO techniques exploited this. This type of link building aims to gain as many links as possible through minimal effort. This is achieved through ‘link farms’, a site that is created purely to produce links for another site.
Google realised this was happening and penalise links from such websites. Now they determine the value of the link depending on the context of the link. E.G is the link coming from a website that’s relevant to you?
All these types of Black hat SEO techniques were used as a quick response to a long term problem. Here at evolve we believe in slowly building a websites presence on Google from the ground up, it wont have immediate results but it will have lasting results.