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Unethical SEO Practices

March 16, 2007     (Updated from our Apr. 2003 article)

Spamming or spamdexing a search engine is any practice that devalues the integrity and relevance of a search property's search results.

Any search engine that discovers someone using methods or technology that makes a mockery of their search systems or offends their sense of fair play or leads search engines to believe that the practitioner has gained an unfair advantage over someone else is considered spam.

Whether you're a search engine optimizing specialist, search engine positioning firm, or someone working to increase a Web site's ranking in the various search engines, if you truly understand an engine's fundamental policies, your interests should be very clearly defined. It is the goal of each search engine to deliver the best relevant information to all their users.

If you are targeting keywords and keyphrase searches that are in fact legitimately relevant to your Web site, and you optimize your content so that it includes those keywords, you are effectively helping the search engines in their mission to supply quality, relevant documents to users.

What will happen to people or companies that knowingly use spamming techniques or methods that are forbidden in the search industry? More and more search engines are cracking down on the use of spam techniques they consider inappropriate for gaining top rankings in their indexes.

Don't sacrifice your ethics to achieve your goals. You risk having your web site penalized or banned altogether from the major search engines. Once a web site is banned, it can stay in that state for a very long time, if- it ever recovers. You are spamdexing if you are:

         Keyword stuffing in the meta tags
         Using text that is too small or almost invisible on a page
         Cloaking or page-swapping techniques
         Using colored text on a same-color background
         Promoting keywords not related to your Web site
         Causing search results to show multiple listings for the same content

Spamming or spamdexing any search engine is never a good idea and should be avoided at all times. There are no shortcuts to professional SEO. Treat the engines right and they will treat you right in return. Rank for $ales has been in the business of professional Search Engine Optimization since 1997.

It is our experience that people who don't respect and follow today's search engines rules and terms of use will sooner or later wish they had.

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Article written by Serge Thibodeau,
President & CEO,
Rank for $ales
Copyright (c) Serge Thibodeau 2003

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