White Hat SEO vs. Black Hat SEO: (In Less Than 100 Words)

I’m trying to grow my investing knowledge because it’s critical for growing wealth over time.

The current book I am digesting is The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham.

This book is one of Warren Buffet’s favorites.

Buffet claims to base his investing model on the principles laid out in the book. With a recommendation from Warren Buffet, I felt I had to get it.

I was only about 37 pages in when I read a quote that related to white hat SEO vs black hat SEO.

Here it is:

“Imagine that two places are 130 miles apart. If I observe the 65-mph speed limit, I can drive that distance in two hours. But if I drive 130 mph, I can get there in one hour. If I try this and survive, am I “right”? Should you be tempted to try it, too, because you hear me bragging that it “worked”? Flashy gimmicks for beating the market are much the same: In short streaks, so long as your luck holds out, they work. Over time, they will get you killed.” – The Intelligent Investor

Remember that quote whenever you are trying to decide between using white hat or black hat SEO.

I have nothing against SEOs who use grey or black hat tactics.

In fact, I used to be one of those guys.

I just realized the time and effort I was spending was actually detrimental.

Both to my business and to my personal growth.

Having the ability to manipulate Google’s algorithm is not an evergreen skill.

What happens if Google goes out of business tomorrow?

What happens if Google unleashes a complete AI-based algorithm?

If your entire strategy relies on manipulating Google, then you will be in trouble.

You spent your time learning trickery instead of learning evergreen skills.

Evergreen skills that are not reliant on Google.

Evergreen skills that make you a great MARKETER.

Stop being a geek and obsessing over Google’s algorithm.

Change your mindset.

Start thinking about how to explode your business by giving insane amounts of value.

LEARN skills that will allow you to make money for the rest of your life.

Not for the rest of Google’s life…

Here are evergreen skills that every SEO should learn:

  • How to create VALUABLE content
  • How to market your content
  • How to build relationships
  • How to grow an email list
  • How to write copy
  • How to sell

Notice that keyword research, on-site SEO, and social media are not on this list.

Are you wondering why?

Because understanding how to manipulate a third-party website isn’t evergreen.

Google, Facebook, Twitter, and any other website can go out of business tomorrow…

You can use your evergreen skills to succeed on those platforms, but you must never RELY on them.

Your income should never be hog-tied to something out of your control.

Do you think Gary Vaynerchuck wouldn’t be successful if social media didn’t exist?

Do you think Grant Cardone wouldn’t be successful if he wasn’t able to sell online?

Do you think Marie Forleo wouldn’t be successful if she couldn’t produce videos?

The answer is “NO”.

Vaynerchuck, Cardone, and Forleo would still be successful without those mediums.

They have developed evergreen marketing and sales skills that will last a lifetime.

Focus your effort on learning evergreen skills.

THEN, learn what it takes to be a successful white-hat SEO.

To succeed in white hat SEO, you need to develop the following skills:

  • How to do keyword research that actually produces ROI
  • How to develop SEO content around keywords that Google and your readers fall in love with
  • How to structure a site for search engines AND users
  • How to identify technical issues that are hurting user experience
  • How to get powerful backlinks through outreach
  • How to nurture relationships for continued content promotion and business growth

Don’t be a clown and say, “All link building is black hat SEO.”

It’s not.

Reaching out to influencers and promoting your content is MARKETING.

Building your circle of influence is MARKETING.

The end result is more search engine traffic, more referral traffic, and more relationships.

Relationships that will help you grow your business.

Let me reiterate.

White hat SEO is simple:

  • Find great keywords
  • Create great content
  • Please your users
  • Build relationships

Listen to me.

Today is the day to think bigger.

Stop thinking about how can I make money quickly.

Start thinking about how you can make money for the rest of your life.

The compound effect is real.

Play the long game.

Remember this important fact:

Warren Buffet earned 99% of his wealth after his 50th birthday.

No, you don’t have to wait that long to be successful in SEO.

But you need to change your mindset from algorithm manipulator to business grower.

A funny thing will happen when you do this…

Your SEO results will explode.

My rant is complete.

Do you have something to say about this?

Leave a comment below, and let’s keep the conversion going.

– Gotch

Photo of author

Nathan Gotch

Nathan Gotch is an SEO professional with over 10 years of experience. He's the founder of the #1 SEO business training program in the world, Gotch SEO Academy. And the author of The SEO Entrepreneur. Nathan's SEO expertise is featured on Semrush, Ahrefs, and Search Engine Journal.