What Is Grey Hat SEO And Should I Be Using It?

What Is Grey Hat SEO?

SEO savvy businesses will understand the difference between the terms White Hat and Black Hat SEO. Grey Hat SEO is where things get a little cloudy. What is it?

When creating an SEO strategy that works for your business, you need to know the best possible techniques that will work, right? You may have stumbled across the terms White Hat and Black Hat before, but what about Grey Hat SEO techniques?

Grey Hat SEO involves a bunch of techniques that are sometimes seen as a riskier option, but not as frowned upon as Black Hat. These techniques tend to bend the rules and little, making them much more of a gamble. Thorough research into these techniques is needed before you begin.

Researching grey hat seo techniques

Grey Hat SEO tactics


The practice of Cloaking involves showing a user a different result than what they expect to see from a search engine results page. Google considers this as a high-risk method, one that definitely isn’t recommended to use.

High volumes of pages can be optimised with the right keywords, and are used to trick users into visiting a site they didn’t want to land on originally. This is because the site owner wants to rank highly for as many keywords as possible, but it isn’t an ethical SEO method.

Duplicate Content

Content is King, we all know it! However, when it’s duplicated, it’s a completely different story. Having the same content on multiple web pages can hinder your SEO efforts and can even affect them negatively. It should be an avoided practice at all costs.

Text spinners are a way to reword your content so it isn’t duplicated. However, this method can be pretty shady and low quality, and can even result in incoherent sentences and poor grammar. Not something your customers will want to see on a business site!

Purchasing Links

You can expect an automatic penalty from the off if you begin to regularly purchase links. If you get found, all the effort you’ve put into your site and link building opportunities will have zero effect. However, some link purchases are accepted.

Listing your business information and website links on online directories is a great way to build up links naturally. Paying for business listings is also an accepted way of purchasing links, but be sure to only submit to legitimate sites or directories.

Buying followers and Social Automation

Social media is becoming bigger and better than ever before, and the way we use it has transformed an awful lot. Today, businesses have the opportunity to buy social followers or to automatically follow or unfollow thousands of accounts at the touch of a button.

Having a large number of followers may look like you’re the most popular, trusted business in your industry, but beneath the surface, it can be quite the opposite. With unreliable ‘bot’ accounts, you’ll get no engagement on your posts and you could lose the trust of your genuine following.

SEO squatting

SEO Squatting refers to the process of buying expired domains, ones that are relevant to the keywords and phrases you want to target. People who practice SEO Squatting then put in some well-placed backlinks to their original site, making it more relevant for the right terms.

This Grey Hat technique relies on top quality, informative content, but the new content here must be similar to the content that was originally posted. Keeping a site’s rank and authority high can be time-consuming, however, but will keep those links strong.

What about White Hat and Black Hat SEO?

White Hat SEO comprises of Google-approved strategies that bring you more traffic and higher rankings. Although this process can take considerably longer than other techniques, it ensures long-lasting results that won’t get your site penalised. White Hat SEO tactics include:

  • Keyword Research
  • Satisfying User Intent
  • User Experience and Readability
  • On Page SEO
  • Internal Links
  • Strategic Keywords
  • Image Optimisation
  • Link Building
  • Technical SEO

Black Hat SEO is the wrong way to get results. It consists of unethical, inappropriate and illegal tactics that can seriously hurt site traffic if caught. This may seem like a quick fix to boost your rankings, but the results don’t last long and the chances are your site will be penalised. These tactics include:

  • Paid Links
  • Spam Comments
  • Duplicate Content
  • Article Spinning
  • Cloaking
  • Doorway Pages
  • Keyword Stuffing
  • Invisible Text

Are you practising the correct SEO strategies? Find out here:

Claim your free website audit, right now:

Practice the right strategies with Bigfoot Digital.

Just like the name, Grey Hat SEO is very much a grey area and can be a gamble. To ensure the safest and best results, it takes time and determination. Here at Bigfoot Digital, we only practice the right techniques to ensure your site won’t get penalised.

To find out more, call us on 01226 720 755 or send an email detailing your enquiry to enquiries@bigfootdigital.co.uk. We work with a range of business of different sizes and industries, so you can be confident we can boost your business online.