Not to be confused with the canned, processed meat, spam is the use of redundant or unethical techniques to improve search engine optimization. Since time immemorial –or at least since the Internet first began– webmasters have been using these stratagems to dupe search engines into giving irrelevant pages high search engine placement.
Fortunately or unfortunately –depending on your point of view– search engines are quickly catching on. Some won’t index pages believed to contain spam; others will still index, but will rank the pages lower, while others still will ban a site altogether. Of course, not all search engines take a hard-line on spam. Tricks that are perfectly acceptable on one search engine may be considered spam by another.
Search Engine optimization: Spamming Techniques
Invisible Text: Hiding keywords by using the same color font and background is one of the oldest tricks in the spammers’ book. These days, it’s also one of the most easily detected by search engines.
Keyword Stuffing: Repeating keywords over and over again, usually at the bottom of the page (tailing) in tiny font or within meta tags or other hidden tags.
Unrelated Keywords: Never use popular keywords that do not apply to your site’s content. You might be able to trick a few people searching for such words into clicking at your link, but they will quickly leave your site when they see you have no info on the topic they were originally searching for.
Hidden Tags: The use of keywords in hidden HTML tags like comment tags, style tags, http-equiv tags, hidden value tags, alt tags, font tags, author tags, option tags, noframes tags (on sites not using frames).
Mirror Pages: Don’t duplicate a web page or doorway page, give those different names. Mirror pages are regarded as spam by all search engines and directories.
Link Farms: Many search engines consider the use of link farms or reciprocal link generators as spam. Several search engines are known to kick out sites that participate in any link exchange program that artificially boosts link popularity.
Even those who are spamming right now and think they are getting away with it, should keep one thing in mind, when competitors check out your site (and they do), they will see it is spam and they may choose to report you. Once you have been reported to a search engine, you are likely to be penalized in search engine results for using your spam technique.