Ethics and Promoting Your Site Ethical Research Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Ethics and Promoting Your Site

Ethical Research

Search Engine Optimization -- SEO techniques is the methodology of making a website and its content more relevant for search engines and eventually for the user community who search them through 'keywords' and 'phrases' for getting appropriate results. The entire process includes making strategies to enhance web pages so that they are able to gain a higher ranking in actual search engine results. The ideal scenario is the particular enterprise's website to get listed on the first page of search engine results when the targeted keywords and phrases are searched and for this the enterprise's website needs to be optimised for these terms. (Majchrzak, 2008)

Unethical marketing techniques used in e-business:

An ongoing debate often encountered is what is "unfair" or "unethical" in promoting website for e-business. Essentially the objective of SEO is to manipulate the search engines into ranking the particular site higher. However the methods employed are either ethical or unethical. Unethical practices are called 'black hat' practices which are deliberately employed to gain unfair competition which are widely accepted by the SEO community as wrongful practice. Black hat practices are designated as they result in aberrant rankings since they have no loyalty for website visitors and their sole aim is getting ranked higher in search engines. (Rognerud, 2008)

Black hat SEO techniques are judged as 'spamdexing'. Spamdexing which includes content spam, link spam and cloaking are immoral practices which attempts to manipulate search engines indexing so as to generate higher results in ranking. A good example of spamdexing is keywords stuffing wherein the web pages are packed with competitive keywords just to manipulate search engines instead of producing useful content for the website visitors. Mirror sites or duplicate content is putting the identical content on a different web page in the same site and are applicable to allied sites that are linked heavily. Black hat duplication is copying and pasting identical content paragraph by paragraph from one page to another. Adopting this practice will in all likelihood lower the site rankings with the risk of possible exclusion of content from the primary index. (Rognerud, 2008)

Another unethical procedure adopted is link farming which is the process of exchanging shared links with website with a view to increase search engine optimization. The motive behind link farming is increasing the number of sites that link to the enterprise's main website, as Google the dominant search engines rank sites as per the quality and quantity of sites which link to the particular enterprise's website. The higher the number of sites that link to the enterprise's site, the higher is the ranking in search engine results as more links is a pointer to a higher level of recognition among the user community. Google however strongly advocates against use of link farming as it considers it to be type of spam and have executed methods to evict websites which adopt link farming and hence the practice has acquired negative implications across the Internet users. A link farm is basically a webpage which is page of links to other sites. Besides, link spamming constitutes another type of link farming wherein software are used to produce a deluge of links over a short period of time which Google frowns upon since these are not built in a natural process with varying anchor text changes. (Rognerud, 2008)

Consequences of Unethical SEO techniques:

The consequences of using these unethical practices entails putting an enterprise's website at stake as majority of search engines punish websites which adopt link farming thus reversing the proposed outcome. The above practices are Black Hat practices or unethical as it goes against the accepted polices of search engine governance. At an extreme step, Google may impose severe penalty by banishing a particular site to the existing supplemental index popularly known as 'Google Hell' without even the website knowing what took it there. Google's supplemental index is akin to what is called as the 'digital basement'. An enterprise's website might continue to be listed on Google, but does not show up in the more visible core index which can considerably impact website earning potential. (Rognerud, 2008)


Unethical SEO techniques are Black Hat techniques which although might be beneficial for an enterprise's website in the short-run by improving its page rank, eventually gets detected by Google and other search engines and…

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