Webcology #398 – Is SEO as Dirty as Ever?

Is SEO as Dirty as it’s Ever Been?

Air date: July 7, 2016


As a technical practice and marketing channel, Search Engine Optimization has built credibility over the years but spammers, poorly trained SEOs, and black-hat practitioners continue give it a bad name.

Jim Hedger and Dave Davies discuss a recent Search Engine Land article by  who wrote, “As much as the SEO industry wants to grow up and shed the shady reputation it had in the past, it seems many don’t want to change and still cast a shadow over the industry. For every company doing things right, it seems there are many more who have not updated their practices or still want to take shortcuts.”

It’s a good article and, for a week where little happened in search, a fun topic for the show.

Stox, who is an SEO Specialist for IBM and an organizer for the Raleigh SEO Meetup, notes mistakes and outdated practices but he also writes about

  • Shady sales tactics that misrepresent SEO or abilities
  • Absurd contracts that lock clients into bad services
  • Proprietary CMS systems that trap clients to a platform
  • Withholding log-ins and passwords
  • Building bad links
    • private blog networks, paid links and spam
    • link networks
  • Removing links
  • Noindex tags
  • Multiple websites on different domains
  • Bad canonicals
  • Reusing or recycling content creates duplicate content
  • Reviews
  • Rollbacks
  • Lawsuits
  • No conversion tracking
  • 301’ing a penalized site


Jim Hedger

Jim Hedger is an organic SEO and digital marketing specialist. Jim has been involved in the online marketing industry since 1998 and a SEO since 1999. Best known as a broadcaster, interviewer, content writer and search industry commentator, Jim is a frequent conference speaker and organizer. He hosts the search focused radio show Webcology on WebmasterRadio.FM and is a WebmasterRadio.FM conference interviewer. Jim brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, passion and creative thinking to each project. Preferring a teamwork approach, Jim strives to inform and train his clients and their staff to run and maintain their own search and social media efforts.

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