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Cheap Search Engine Optimization Picture

Negative SEO

Is negative SEO just a myth? No, it is a very real tool used by some SEO firms to help their clients push a competitor off the first page of a search engine. I am going to label the two types of negative SEO as white hat and black hat,but that does not mean that I am endorsing one of them, or saying that it is ethical.

Black hat negative SEO would be building links to a competitor from sites that are considered ‘bad neighborhoods’, i.e. spammers,adult sites,hacking sites,warez sites. In theory Google states that competitors cannot harm your rankings by building excessive links,or irrelevant links or links from bad neighborhoods to your site. They state that such links will be discounted in value but that they would not have a negative impact on your ranking. However I spoke with one very experienced SEO expert who told me just a few months ago (summer of 2010) that he could make my site look like a spam site if he wanted.

White hat negative SEO means to push a competitor off the first page so that  they cut into your market share less,by building back links to the sites immediately below them in the rankings. This would work best if those sites below them are not direct competitors.

Update. 4/23/2012 In recent weeks this has become a much hotter topic. I thought some of you might enjoy additional information from this article over at PotPieGirl’s site.

6 comments to Negative SEO

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