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Black Hat SEO?

Hi,

We have a client who has engaged a SEO specialist. That company has advised the client to insert a javascript file at the footer of the page, which opens up when you click on an appropriate link. The mark up written to the page just contains a bunch of paragraphs with his chosen keywords in which link back to the home page.

The questions I have are as follows:

1. given that this content is not designed for users - just for search engines, would Google grumble about it.
2. given that the content is contained within a JS function, would Google even bother to read it

As an aside, and slightly unrelated to the above, let's say we had a bunch of paragraphs which which were heavily SEO optimised - (designed for Google and not users!) which we put in a div, and set the display to none; or say indented the text so it was off the page.... would
Google read it anyway and thus assist us in SEO efforts? Would they realise that the display was set to none? If so how?

Any help much appreciated!

Daisy
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daisydoos
Asked:
daisydoos
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1 Solution
 
Mr_SplashCommented:
Hi Daisy,

Google does everything it can to not list black hat optimised sites. Plus if someone sees blackhat seo on the site it's quite easy to report it to Google who will then check it and remove it from their indox.

Firstly yes google would not like your site if it realises you have sections of pure keywords.

Secondly google ignores anything inside elements that have display set to none or hidden.

Thirdly Google does not run javascript.

The way the "Specialist" (Although to be honest if he's using black hat techniques I wouldn't call him that). may have done it is to have the keywords on the page, then as soon as the page has finished loading some JavaScript hides the keywords from humans. But as Google doesn't run the javascript the keywords remain.

The best way of achieving a well optimised page that will STAY highly ranked is to use white hat techniques, Google wants you to write for the user not them. You should also limit the amount of times you use a keyword to about 4 per page.

These links give some good information on whitehat techniques.
http://www.webdesignerwall.com/general/seo-guide-for-designers/
http://www.seomoz.org/blog/the-web-developers-seo-cheat-sheet
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daisydoosAuthor Commented:
Hi Mr Splash,

Thanks for your comments.

I'm not sure if this company is doing what you suggest (ie hiding the words when the page has finished loading) - but it's a good suggestion!

Thanks also for your comments on Google igoring elements displayed to none.... if the styles are in an external style sheet (which they will always be of course :-) ) does Google check every single class or id to check if it's display property is not none or hidden - I can hardly believe it does! So, how would they know? This has been bugging me for a while - and I must stress I have no intention of using such a technique!

Appreciate you comments and the links - any other thoughts much appreciated.

PS this is the JS the SEO company are using:

<noscript>
</noscript>

<script language=javascript type='text/javascript'>
<!--
      cstring = 'newresourceextranoted';       cdisplay = cstring.substring(16,17) + cstring.substring(17,18) + cstring.substring(0,1) + cstring.substring(19,20) ;
      function closeResources()
      {
            if (document.getElementById)
            { // DOM3 = ie5, NS6
                  document.getElementById('resources88742').style.display = cdisplay;
            }
            else
            {
                  if (document.layers)
                  { // Netscape 4
                        document.resources88742.display = cdisplay;
                  }
                  else
                  { // ie 4
                        document.all.resources88742.style.display = cdisplay;
                  }
            }
      }
      function showResources()
      {
            if (document.getElementById)
            { // DOM3 = ie5, NS6
                  document.getElementById('resources88742').style.display = 'block';
            }
            else
            {
                  if (document.layers)
                  { // Netscape 4
                        document.resources88742.display = 'block';
                  }
                  else
                  { // ie 4
                        document.all.resources88742.style.display = 'block';
                  }
            }
      }
-->
</script>

and then

<a class="resource_link" href="#resource_info" onClick="showResources();">Resources</a><div id="resources88742" class="resource_link"><a name="#resource_info"></a><br><div align="left" id="resource_item1"><h1 class="resource_title"><span class="resource_title"><a class="resource_title" href="somedomain.com">keyword rich title</a></span></h1><div class="resource_text">load of text with keywords </div>

Cheers,

Daisy
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Mr_SplashCommented:
You shouldn't underestimate Googles tenaciousness. Google crawls through each page on the site and checks all id's or class's that are being used in that page.

It does look like that's what the company is doing because if you take away the javascript there's nothing saying the content should be hidden. (Unless there is a css rule in the stylesheet.)

It's also worth mentioning that Black hat can probably get you the results you want in terms of index placement quicker that white hat, however it will not stay there for long. Whereas white has is for the long term.
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daisydoosAuthor Commented:
Hi Mr Splash,

Thanks for your comments.

While I have no intention to use any Black Hat techniques - belieiving as you do that results are not long lasting, I do question Google's tenacity given the number of sites I have seen which are clearly using spamming techniques (eg using colours the same background as the text - the oldest one in the book!) and other Black Hat techniques which they don't even pick up!

Anyway, appreciate your comments.

Cheers,

Daisy
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