SEO Mistakes to Avoid | 3 Black Hat Techniques That WILL Get You Banned from Google
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SEO Mistakes to Avoid | 3 Black Hat Techniques That WILL Get You Banned from Google

you guys want to hear something interesting well today I’m gonna share with you all of my war stories of getting banned by Google hey everyone i’m neil patel and today i’m gonna share with you SEO mistakes that you should avoid and if you don’t you’re gonna get bad so the first one i have for you is building links through WordPress themes some people are still doing them and they’re like oh my god this works whether it’s through WordPress themes it’s through widgets it’s through you know like those little StatCounter badges or anything like that see back in the day I had a web hosting website I never provided web hosting but I ranked number one on Google for the term web hosting that’s one of the most competitive terms everyone’s going after it because they want affiliate commissions for a Hostgator Bluehost GoDaddy you name it and the way I rank really high was I bought a domain that had hosting in it or the term web hosting and then I bought a ton of WordPress themes instead of creating my own themes and putting the link at the bottom I just found all the popular WordPress themes that are already out there and that existed and I bought the themes right not just from the person for like 50 bucks I’m talking about these free themes that cost no money so let’s say the creator of one of the themes would be David’s Inc I’ll hit up David and be like hey you create an awesome theme I’m just gonna buy the whole team from you for ten thousand bucks in the whole business and the site and I’m gonna switch the bottom to say theme created by David zing to team curated by let’s say neo Patel’s web hosting site and I’m not gonna give up the euro but it was web hosting something right you can fill in the blank and by doing that I was building a hundreds and thousands of links right away because I was buying all the most popular WordPress themes out there and sites within six months I shot up to the first page of Google for the term web hosting within another three months I shot up to the first spot and you know what happen Google eventually banned my website when I was ranking number one I was generating over a hundred thousand dollars a month in affiliate income that was great I’d even spend more than fifty thousand dollars buying a ton of themed sites and I did that over a period of six months so the income that I was generating was huge compared to my investment well I got banned and they only banned me and funny enough number two and number three we’re using the same tack but Google didn’t ban them and I think it was because people have been cheap a knows my site and they want to make an example nonetheless I learned don’t do Shady link building tactics the second strategy I have for you is expired domain names there was a domain name that was named after a park one day it was battlefield something may be battlefield bypass or whatever it is and I bought this expired domain name because it was about like the civil war in America and I had all these edu links and I did something really creative and interesting and I’m no longer in this space so I’ll tell you what all about it so with this battlefield bypass site what I ended up doing is I took the expired domain II put up casino related content and then I built a few links here there well all they do is just take a really old domain name that had a ton of authority you’re talking about a domain name that cost over $10,000 that was expired and people like oh my god this thing has a high Google Pagerank and back then that matter now it doesn’t I switched it all to casino related stuff and then boom I popped up in the top three spots for the key term online casino and casino that’s crazy right a bench eagle figured it out got banned lost all my money but when I was at the top I was making again six figures in affiliate income each and every single month if you notice a trend I used to do a lot of this stuff back in the day when I was a kid I stopped really doing this kind of stuff now cuz it’s not long run and if you’re not sure if your SEO strategy that you’re using is gonna get you banned or if it’s long run leave a comment and I’ll tell you if you should be doing more of it or less of it because the last thing you want to do is put all this time and energy like I did and then get banned think long term the last strategy I have for you that eventually it will end up getting you banned or penalized or just crush your rankings is writing the same content over and over again see a lot of you guys have blogs and what you’re doing with your blog and this won’t really get you bad but more so it just drastically reduce your traffic you can be like what does all these Google updates happening why is my traffic keep going down and I used to be a victim of it myself after a while you’ve run out of topics to produce so you just regurgitate the same stuff over and over again and outright articles like the top ten marketing tools for SEO the top ten free Google tools that every SEO should be using the top 10 SEO tools for 2018 and then I would even have older ones a top 10 marking tools for 2017 and in 2016 and I did this each and every single year and I just regurgitate this information over and over again therefore SEO tools marketing tools social media tools and there are so much overlap in the content what ends up happening is when you have two articles or three articles that are on the same exact topic how does Google know which one to rank they don’t instead what you should be doing is updating your old content and changing the 2017 to 2018 and making the tools more thorough deleting the old ones that no one uses anymore and by doing that Google’s like oh cool you’re updating your old content we should keep ranking it higher and higher because it’s fresh they don’t want to rank old content that’s outdated I just recently bought a blog for a half a million bucks and this blog was like oh some months we get 1.2 million unique visitors some once we get 800,000 visitors and they’re like it’s all seasonality it’s not seasonality it’s because they have the same content that’s regurgitator over and over again and they have a lot of outdated content that talks about tools like feed runner which no marketers use anymore you delete all of that stuff and you prune the content and you update the old stuff what you’ll find is your traffic won’t just go up but it’ll be way more consistent so in your blog you probably already have regurgitated content combined the less powerful ones so go to your Google Analytics look at the one that gets the least amount of search traffic and redirect it to the other one combine the content make it more thorough you have less duplicate content and take all your old content that just sucks and no one’s reading anymore no one likes and delete it and redirect you to the most relevant post when you do that you’re gonna get way more traffic you’re not gonna get penalized and just gonna continually grow quarter-over-quarter sure if you avoid these three things there’s no guarantee that your Google traffic won’t go down but in the long run when you measure it year-over-year you should still be going up think long term and don’t do short term tricks and tactics like I always do and be like oh yeah what kind of widget can I end up buying and put my name all over it it’s not about that it’s about longevity and follow these tips and you will have longevity


  • Justin Buhl

    A colleague and myself are having a heated debate about the effectiveness of PBNs. What are your thoughts?

  • Eric S

    Google LOVES to make examples out of people. I got disabled for a creative little trick I found in AdWords, was making few thousand conversions per month, then was "disabled for enabling dishonest behavior", even though now, everyone in my niche uses that same strategy and probably killing it..

    Hopefully they'll find out sooner or later that if they heavily depend on AdWords, they are jeopardizing their business. Fortunately for me, I was already messing with SEO, and as soon as I was disabled once, I decided not to use AdWords anymore, and have been working on my links and rankings, I must say, it takes time and effort, but is DEFINITELY worth it.

    The traffic from SEO is not "free", there is a lot of up-front investing both in time and money, and the results are not instant like with AdWords, but it's definitely been great to see the increase in first time customers over time.

    For scale, I was getting around 100-120 first time orders each week, then when AdWords dropped, I literally had about 6 first time orders the first week, which were ALL visitors who had been converted through AdWords, just purchased later.

    However, as I started building links, improving my SEO, etc, I've gone up to 15 first time orders this week.

    One final note: AdWords really makes you turn a blind eye to a lot of key factors in the success of your business, like my on-site SEO was absolutely trash, my CTR was under 1% when I started, and I hadn't even thought of things like my basket size, and repeat orders (not totally SEO related or AdWords fault, you kinda disregard important things), even my product descriptions were very poor and I didn't even care because I was still getting orders.

    Once I realized all these things, fixing descriptions, tags, images, and some email marketing, over the last month and a half, my average order size has increased by 28%, and my repeat orders have gone up by… 58%… even though I get about 20-30% of the traffic I used to get from AdWords!

    Keep going my friends, you can ALL get there!

  • Indra KumaR

    Hii. Neil bhaii…I'm running my blog (tech) so on every post I needed an image that suits the post. Instead I used an image from particular official site and posted it on my blog so is it healthy or not??..Also is there any method to protect a domain name or is there any threat to it??..

  • Ohana Girls Guide To Life

    My Friend I am so glad that I found your channel. I need to watch at least one of your videos a day and take notes . Mahalo For Sharing!

  • Igor Leonardo De Macedo Corrêa

    Hello Neil,
    I need your help. Creating a website using an expired domain of authority is a good strategy? And what should I take into consideration in such a domain?

  • Adil Rashid Lone

    Hey , Neal! I am new in this field and i been going through some of your blogs and videos , Its helping me out , Thanks…

  • Mad Mike Sports

    I do, web 2.0 website linking. WordPress blogging to my personal website.

    Is this something I should continue or am I wasting my time?

  • Dan Pryde

    Trust me Neil, any SEO hacks that I could perform would be lucky to generate me 6 dollar per month, let alone 6 figure per month haha! Thanks for sharing your insights. Very interesting to hear about old tricks!

  • Tim Bradley

    I am a beginner SEO.

    Sadly, I've realised some shady tactics clearly still work well with google et al.

    I know this because I see blatantly dodgy sites (sites with thin and low quality content) dominating extremely competitive search terms – one example I can think of is even insecure, and we are talking globally competitive areas here.

    While google has worked well to crack down on spammy practices, it still has a way to go IMO. In particular, I suspect google struggles counteracting PBNs and WEB 2.0 hacks.

    SIDE NOTE: Even in areas where the players are not using dodgy tactics, I think google could and should shake up incumbents a bit more, and a bit more frequently: i.e. "retest the waters", so to speak.

    Like the Australian Cricket team, it can be extremely hard to get into the team ( the say ~top 10 results or so in competitive areas ) but once in it is also extremely hard to be kicked off the team.

    I see plenty of outdated established sites in competitive areas kicking the backside of newer ( but NOT new ) established sites that have MUCH better content, better user experience, same or similar links, more and better reviews, and better technical build ( structured data, page load, pwa etc ).

    I suspect the reason for this "Establishment Bias" ( for want of a better description ) is that the outdated sites got a great score from google using the easier metrics of yesteryear ( for example, from say 15 years ago ), and which score has never been re-evaluated since or never been properly re-evaluated since.

    That said, I am not FOR constant and total re-evaluation. That would cause a constantly evolving mess of one upmanship. We want to reward sites that work consistently and work well.

    Moreover, established, tested, and mature sites have usually earned the right to a good rank presumption.

    However, I do think google could achieve a fairer market place by applying a bit more pressure – "raising the cooking temperature" so to speak. Even if it takes a site "type" approach, for example, re-evaluating "location-specific business" type sites a bit more tougher and regularly than say a "platform site" type site like reddit.

    Just my 2 cents (using lay terms – that are certainly open to semantic debate on a technical level), and acknowledging that I'll probably learn more then look back at this post and laugh at my stupidity.

  • Ritik singh

    Hii Neil
    I have started my seo agency I have no experience how can I get my first client please make a video on this

  • Yasinzaii

    This man said that if you have any question leave it out in the comments. He doesn't give a shit about your questions, He just wants youtube to beleive that is the video is super cool. Lol, he will not answer dont waste your time in commenting

  • Abiding Happiness

    That is what people do – they share what already does not work. And when thousands of people are given the same advice, it is not unique anymore, and creates more competition in already competitive place. But it is good to watch for inspiration , to keep in mind that you need to be ahead of the crowd.

  • Fazal Mayar

    My site is still indexed but struggling to get serp since blog comments spam like a year ago . Google doesnt help when its an algo penalty

  • Fredrik Sjödin

    Hey Neil (and everyone else). When you said to "delete the old posts"…. followed by "and redirect it to the new most relevant post". How does that work?

    If I delete it, there's nothing to redirect…..right?

    I'd be happy if someone who knows can explain this to me.

    Thank you guys 😀


  • Kunou's

    But what if you want to create a series of posts like "Best X of 2018" and then "Best X of 2019" and then 2020 for the year after? Each would obviously be unique as you wouldn't be writing about the same items or whatever. Do you still have to update the 2018 version or can you just freely make another one for the 2019 and so on?

  • mominik

    To be true i am tired of link building or seo, noting works now days ! Or you need to be big company an give crazy ads then real seo! an if the work you do is great so or so people who come will come again! thats how it is… rest is for people who dont have much money! The world is still same, if you dont have money, yes clime up with nails… thats what we do!!!!

  • healthcare 'nt' sickcare

    Hey Neil, what about buying local expired domain name with high BL and do 301 redirect it to our main domain. will you suggest this strategy?

  • Andy O Dea

    Hi Neill, could you tell me what is the most accurate software or sights to use when researching low competition keywords with good search volume to rank YouTube videos. best suited to a channel just starting out. Thanku!

  • 24SevenMarketing

    My client is building a 25,000 square foot showroom for home improvement contractors … plumber … electrician … tree service … solar energy … room additions … etc. There will be a total of 30 to 40 tenants plus a mega kitchen and bath showroom. I will build a website for the business with a page to promote each tenant. With the intent to get a top ranking in Google local listings for each service category.

    It will take about 9 months for the building to be ready. I want to start building out the website now using generic location-based names for the different tenants (Tampa Plumber … Tampa Painter … etc.) … I will have a unique local phone number for each business category … and a separate suite number. I want to get this built out and use the leads generated as leverage to get tenants signed up while we do the buildout.

    Will these work? Will Google slap us because we have only generic business names? (We can set up a marketing LLC for each generic business if that will help legitimize us with Google.) While the construction is going on I would like to use our construction office as the address since we can't receive mail at the building until the construction is done…will this be possible or will Google reject 40 businesses operating out of a small office?

    Any suggestions you can make will be VERY much appreciated. Once this prototype is operating my client plans to expand this concept nationwide with 500 or more locations eventually….so I am looking at a huge amount of work potentially.

  • I Want A 6 Pack Motivation

    Hi Neal, if one runs across an amazing expired domain but contains 2 or 3 spam considered casino backlinks, does the whole site lose it's value or it can that site being that its now in new hands be cleaned up to benefit for the backlink value and profile it does contain? thank you!

  • Everyday Ape

    Hi Neil,
    I have a question – If I delete some of my old articles because they are not suitable for my site, is it bad practice to use a 301 redirect for the old URL to the homepage?
    Look forward to hearing your thoughts:-)

  • Chicago Website Service

    Thanks for the warning. What if you legitimately make a WordPress plugin, is it ok to have a link to your site from the wp store and should it be nofollow or can it be do follow? Also if you build websites for people, is it ok to have a powered by link in the footer as long as it’s nofollow? What if the website owner decides to make a link page and include one single do follow link saying something like if you like this site, we recommend you use xyzwebdesign? Thanks

  • Achal Saini

    Hey Neil,
    What will happen if I build two similar websites on the same laptop and internet connection? Will google ban the both the websites?

  • Destroy the Box with Brooks Conkle

    #3 Question: we have a local media company. In our blog section, we promote the top items happening in our area each week. So it's calendar based and comes out each week. Think it's ok to leave these older posts? Or what would be an appropriate strategy there?

  • Fahad Khan

    Hey Neil, I am using link building strategy by boosting a post in facebook ads? Is it okay to promote the article on Facebook and getting a social signal for the article? REGARDS!

  • Nyla Cione

    Neil, what do you think about Go Daddy’s GoCentral relative to seo? Is it effective or limited within that if I’m making sense.

  • Lee Knights

    Hey Neil , I recently purchased an expired domain with lots of banklinks and then set up a redirect from that domain to my lakstore uk website domain. Am I at risk of getting banned from google ?


    Some great tips man. Thank You. 🙂
    What do you think of answering quora questions with links to relevant YouTube videos?

  • Jason Stallworth

    Man I’m guilty of writing the same type of content, not on purpose, but just covering a different angle.

    In fact, one another site, I deleted some posts that were similar and just created on new super long post.

  • Miftahul Khoir

    Content is king, not reupload content, but fresh content or renewal content (upgrade old content)

    Thanks sifu you're very familiar in Indonesia, when you coming here? 😀


    If the there tube algorithms are what decides what gets first dibs in the recommended then I guess it doesn't make a difference hitting thumbs up on this video? Not being facetious that's a real question.

  • Je nsz

    Why does Neil PAtel always talk in fragments and also he claims he bought themes for $10k when he had a hosting site. What he doesnt mention is where did he get that money to start with? Doesnt make any sense.

  • G Mail

    Wow!! You I haven;t heard that phrase in a long time. . . "longevity". Everyone needs to stop a moment and give this thought some consideration as it will make you a success with time.

  • HVMA Social Media

    Wow, some very interesting points you made in this video. Google is such a huge facet of the social media sphere and getting banned could be a disaster for any aspiring social media patrons. Definitely good to be careful when constructing SEO!

  • MrBrandongoodwin

    Can I post my bio at the bottom of each blog or will Google penalize me for re-posting the same content over & over?

  • jumpman858

    Wow… your delivery on videos have improved a lot Neil… I remember when you started out with a ton of energy and almost yelling. Nice to see your progess, congrats!

  • Fawad Malik

    I Neil i have created a word press website with some free spa theme and i am working on a bunch of seo especially local seo that are famous just now added my business of this web on Google maps and its showing for some key words
    Is there anything i am doing wrong or should i be increasing my content on that web page gradually with more massage spa related terms.
    Any thing wrong u see in all that process

  • James White Photography

    SO let me clarify something…

    If you have an article on your wordpress site, say "7 mistakes people make when planning a wedding", eventually you run out of topics to right about with regards to weddings. So you could go back to that article, re-write parts, expand on parts and go more in depth, and then hit 'update'. And to google, this signifies basically, 'new content' that it should rank, just as though this was new content?

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