SEO Written by 2
White hat search engine optimization, or White Hat SEO, is a method where you optimize your website according to search engine rules or namely, Google’s rules. White hat is in contrast to black hat techniques that may include page cloaking, gamed search engine placement and other methods that put you on the outside of all things decent in SEO land. If you use black hat methods, your site will be penalized if not banned by Google. So let’s not go there.

Certainly, there is some debate on what constitutes black hat and what is truly white hat. These arbitrary areas are considered “grey hat” but are not worth examining as you can still run into trouble. An SEO expert worth his or her salt will only use generally accepted White Hat techniques including the following for your website:

1. Factual, quality content. Yes, it is true: what you have posted to your website says a lot about you and what you’re trying to say to your readers. If your information is accurate, original and readable, then you are employing one of the fundamental techniques of white hat SEO.

You may have heard the expression, “Content Is King,” and wondered if it is true. Yes, and no…good content is king while bad content will soon make you a pauper. Articles posted to your site should be at least 400 words long, employ related keywords and used liberally, cite one or more sources and link out to quality sites.

2. Internal linking. You may be able to find your way around your website, but the same may not be true for your readers. A clear navigation arrangement is a good start, but there is something you can do with your own articles: link to them.

For instance, if you own an automotive website and are writing about the Ford Fusion, you can link to earlier articles discussing the same subject. With WordPress, you can do this automatically by using a plugin that automatically links like articles. A well linked website is not only easier to navigate, but it creates internal link juice that shares authority among posts and pages.

3. Guest writing. As you found out with our first point, . You can take it a step further by writing good content that can appear on similar sites to your own with one or more links pointing back to your own site.

is a popular White Hat SEO technique, one where you can raise your reputation, provide solid content to another website and receive a valuable link to your own site. Contact blog or website owners to see if they accept guest posts. If they do, then you can send quality articles to other sites and benefit from links to your site.

4. Tags and titles. The name of your website should be prominently listed and serve as the foundation for your site. That name will become part of your title tag and will likely show up on every article, post and page. Keep your title simple, using no more than 72 characters including spaces.

Use a meta tag to describe what your site is about. Search engines such as Google do not put as much weight on this technique, but it can establish what your site is about to your readers. Your description should be unique, tied in with your website’s subject and not repeated elsewhere — as in your articles.

5. Build a site map. You can help the search engines navigate your website by offering up a site map. A site map helps search engines crawl your website and find your content. With a site map in place, your information is easily found and categorized.

If you use WordPress, you can use a site map generator plugin that creates both XML and HTML variants. Although Google accepts sitemaps in a number of formats, you should consider building one on the Sitemap protocol as outlined on Sitemaps can be developed manually, but most people use a third-party tool to get the job done. Your sitemap can contain up to 50,000 URLs and be no larger than 50MB, otherwise you’ll need to break it into several smaller sitemaps.

SEO Considerations

One big note of caution: on occasion, the techniques ascribed as white, black and grey hat may change. For busy executives, choosing an SEO expert is a logical decision, a professional that keeps up with the rules and ensures that your site remains in compliance with those rules.

Sources What are Sitemaps?

Google Webmaster Tools: Creating Sitemaps

This guest post was written by Anita Everhart, who is a professional blogger that gives small business and entrepreneurs SEO advice. She writes for, a nationally recognized Organic SEO Company that offers online marketing services to a wide range of companies across the country.

Comments are closed.