My biggest mistake online is using Black hat SEO ( 4 year journey explained )

I will probably receive a ton of hate from most people here.
I will probably receive I have done everything wrong that I could have done.
And I will try to do my best to explain why all those who will leave such comments are wrong, and hopefully change their mind, and explain them that the best way, cheaper way, and easier way is White Hat SEO.


First of all.

Financing...

I have spent well over couple of thousand euro's on Black Hat SEO.

To sum a decent amount up ( i will probably miss a few things ) : 
GSA SER 99   $
GSA CB 240 $
GSA PI 57 $
GSA Indexer 20 $
Linkprocessor 25 $ (month)
Other Indexer 20 $ (month)
Money Robot  500  $
TurboWeb 2.0 120 $
(SEO VPS with tools Pre-installed) 
200 $
Senuke XCR  169 $
Proxies 25 $ (per month)
2captcha 30 -  40 $ (per month)
Dedicated Server  68 $ (per month)
Windows 2012r2 25 $ (per month)
Spinrewriter  98 $ (per year)
Kontent Machine  289  $ Lifetime
BlasterSuite 280 $ Lifetime
Scrapebox 97 $
Scrapebox EDfinder 20 $
Scrapebox Article 20 $
Zennoposter 120 $ (the only tool that I think is still useful even if you turn back on BHat SEO)

total cost aprox : 
$ 2,567 (and i haven't even listed all the tools that i have tried for several month, or the different proxy services used)
On avarage monthly spending (captcha services, proxies, servers, vps's, indexers)
$ 198 per month


Other relevant tools 
Accuranker  44 $
Backlinksmonitor 24 $ 
per month 68 $

PBN's ? Yes have done those too
Currently hold 98 domains 
882 $   (per year)
Hosting 250 $ (per month)


As you can see I have built myself a huge list of Black hat SEO tools and used many services. And as i'm writing this there are still things coming up like phone verification services, social media tools and services and many more.

Was the money worth the results?

One word... NO
Everyone who will tell you otherwise is not even considering the alternative.
The alternative is White Hat SEO and how many of you can tell me that they have went through that path? 

The problem is most of the people who use black hat seo don't have anything White Hat worthy.
Does that make sense?

Maybe it does once you start something up that's serious, something you care about and want to stay away from black hat as much as possible.

What is the Alternative?
The money spend on black hat SEO could have gotten me 100x greater results if I went White Hat.
I can outsource PR agencies for 120$ a month and get listed in google news, yahoo news, and not to forget all the thousands websites who fetch the feeds and publish these on their sites based for more local audience.
I can get a list of editors that are relevant to my niche and pitch them through the PR agency to get featured on their site.
I could have outsourced blog writers 
I could have outreached guest posts to writers who would get me backlinks not because they are backlinks but because they write a quality piece of news that is share-worthy.
I could have bought social media posts for more exposure from big networks.
I could have bought an article that gets published on buzzfeed, huffingtonpost, mashable, blogher & tons more high authority sites.

If I would sum up the price of the above it would probably be 1/4th of what I have spend on my 4 year journey, and I have came to the conclusion that Black Hat SEO is just not worth it. 

There are so many ways that I could explain how White Hat SEO is actually more fun, more engaging with your audience, more engaging with fellow online marketers and webmasters.

Rather than buying proxies, checking status of proxies, buying captcha credits from chinese type monsters.
Setting up kontent machine, Setting up GSA SER, Setting up MR, Setting up Turboweb.
Where is the fun in that ?

In the meantime you could have easily done some research and found the top bloggers and magazines with the most trending social signals and wrote them an email if you they were interested in a quality guest post. 
Add a 20-40$ to some top writer to write it for you and you would get something in return that none of the Black Hat Tools could have given you even if you would run them for 4 years.

Another problem with black hat seo is is that you think you are doing it wrong. So you go online, read more about it, and load yourself with tons more crap like PR emulator to build more "quality links" instead of quantity. 

No tool can build you something of quality, it's all shit links, and to top it all of is that you placed an unwanted link. That "IF" the owner of the site is s serious he will remove eventually, or if he doesn't give a crap about his site it will stay... along with 200.000 other links from different people.

All I am trying to say is here that if you would weigh the money, the time and mostly the fun in online marketing.
Black Hat SEO is a black hole sucking in all your money, all your time and there is no fun in it at all.
White Hat SEO is cheap, the time you spend on it is fun and engaging with your fellow marketers in the same niche is just how it supposed to be.
(unless you're a very anti-social person who doesn't like human contact)

All I am trying to explain here is that Black Hat SEO is not the way to go. 
You spend countless of hours on it, you spend money on it like you're trying to put a fire off with gasoline, and you get a bitchslap from google as a reward for all the trouble.

I think i have finally woken up.
Start building something you care about...

P.S. In case you didnt got the message, or your just that retarded to not follow any advice from someone who has tried it all for the last 4 years.
Or if you don't mind all the work in managing tools, setting up new projects that gets you shit results.

Message me and I will sell you all my tools for the biggest bargain you have ever found on the internet. 
**But i really hope you do not**
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Comments

  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    You're acting like the only option you have is to choose "white hat" or "black hat" or "whatever hat". That's not accurate. You can do that if you want, but realistically you can have many projects using many different techniques taking many different amounts of risk.
  • shaunshaun http://shaunmarrs.com/ - The Ultimate Resource For Free GSA Tool Tutorials!
    "The money spend on black hat SEO could have gotten me 100x greater results if I went White Hat."

    Not sure how accurate this part is....

    Also, you missed the main one for me. I have nailed a method and moved into my scaling phase multiple times now only for an update to Googles algo to come out and crush everything I have developed.

    Although I still have a few BH projects going, the majority of my efforts are going into white hat projects right now with a massive shift in focus from ranking top for a specific keyword to ranking top for as many super long tails as possible.

    My own personal goals and circumstances are changing with me looking more towards a digital nomad life style in south east asia. I know a few lads out there already doing it and they dont need anywhere near as much cash as I do to live in the UK. I am still earning enough from my pre-panda 4 domains to live out there but I think they will be hit in the next roll out so I want to have enough from white hat stuff or social media botting before I take the leap.

    Currently I am looking to take a year out to try new stuff and then decide what way I want to go.
  • DoonDoon Netherlands
    edited January 31
    yeah i made a mistake there, it was visa versa, if i would have spend all that money on white hat seo, and on something that I can grow and build as a legit business I would have had way more growth than i have now. 

    The problem is that nothing lasts if you go black hat.
    Another problem is that 80% is promoted as "THE BEST TOOL" for Black Hat Seo.

    meanwhile there are people putting little bit of time and effort on white hat methods like pr marketing, outreach and social buzz and get tons more + it lasts.. its within the books of google's play rules.
    This is what has frustrated me, that I just keep on investing and investing and as you said yourself scaling if something works till that slap comes. 

    Why on earth would you want to keep up with that ?
    I don't see the fun in it at all.

    If you would research something of great value, that you'd love to do even if it gets you 10 cents from the start. And than spend all the black hat budget you have on white hat marketing and PR. sit on it, let it grow. You could achieve something that will generate income for many years.

    The best thing about white hat is that the longer you keep it alive the more you grow. Your Authority will at some point (maybe in 4 - 5 years) skyrocket, especially if you would calculate all the money you waste on a monthly basis. If you would spend your money wisely each month as much as you would spend on proxies, capthchas and other black hat related garbage - and instead use it for PR, Marketing, Outreach, Social media...

     
    What kind of Moz you would had in 4 years? DA / PA / TF / CF ?

    4-5 years of 4 PR's per month
    Blogger outreach, Guest posting on niche relevant sites.
    Engaging in social groups, Finding buzz around your niche and actively responding to it everyday.

    I just don't want to know what I could have had today if my 4 years looked were spend in that way.
    Instead of wasting money on horse shit, with horse shit results.

  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    I still don't understand the need for you to post and keep posting about this. Do you want someone to validate your opinion? If you're so confident that you are correct, get to work and make some money :)
  • Make PBNs, and the rest is history. You said that you have 98 PBNs, that is more than enough to make $3000 a month.
  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    @Anonymous - I remember you giving some good advice about pbns a while back and looked up a comment from the summer about a 100-200 site pbn being enough to make 10k+ / mo. How much would you expect to spend buying up those domains from a broker?
  • shaunshaun http://shaunmarrs.com/ - The Ultimate Resource For Free GSA Tool Tutorials!
    @doon "people putting little bit of time and effort on white hat methods like pr marketing, outreach and social buzz and get tons more + it lasts.. its within the books of google's play rules."

    Have you actually did any of this? I cant see how it could be people putting in little bit of time and effort.....

    You remind me of a guy on BHW a few years back, he had spend thousands on WSOs always chasing the next shiny thing but never took the time to try any of the methods or learn any of the tools he had bought, he just kept buying the next one.

    @Anonymous I have been looking into this the past few weeks, the stuff the domain vendors are selling is a waste of time and I have tried domcop in the past for backorders and it was crazy how much time and effort it took just to get one domain.

    Do you self scrape or use backorders?


  • edited February 1
    @Doon something's not right. You need to test, fuck the tools, test test test. Once you figure stuff out manually, then use a tool to scale up the efforts (basically saving you from hiring a staff member to double up on your nailed method as @Shaun mentioned). Without a method, you're just giving these marketeers your money.

    Make another list from your list and and a reason behind why you bought each one and how much effect it had on making you money - even if it's a loss initially, work out whether it CAN make you money.

    FWIW I run an SEO agency and for 5 years only used BH tools, SER for 3 of those years. I've kept 90% of clients over Panda, Penguin, whatever. I've had one penalty and that was deliberate on my own site to prove a point to people, it's now ranking like a MFr. I only use PBNs and the odd bought BHW/Fiverr service to diversify or dilute anchors. 

    Stop spending monthly if you don't need to. I was racking up £800+pm on shit to run many licenses of SER, Sbox (seriously, you paid $97 and not $57 using /bhw code)/Gscraper before SBv2 arrived. I trimmed my costs down to £200pm and run ultra lean. Profit margin is bonkers.

    @Shaun I used to live in SE Asia, please let me give you some pointers/warnings. It's not as straightforward as people make out. There's 99 bullshitters out there for every 100 foreigner so don't believe everything you hear. Getting used to racism for starters is tiresome, being from the UK you'll find corruption unbeliveable, you have zero safety and will probably have a near miss every day from cars/motorbikes, you might save money compared to UK taxes/prices but temptations from girls/whatever (not me I went with my UK girl) you're into and/or police/gangs noticing you and wanting some/most of your bank account....put it this way, I wouldn't go back, not even for a holiday. The Internet is shit, one season (fucking hot) is loathesome you tend to stay away from the heat and chase air con, sanitation is shit (get used to diarrhoea if you can), paying medical bills....we've never been in hospital as many times as we did over there. Ah fuck I could go on, but this thread isn't about living over there. Go for 6-12 months and come back, have an open ticket. If I could go back in time I'd do 1-2 months in different places (then you realise they're all the same...). I used to hate the UK, now I have an unreal love for it. Something many residents could do with an eye-opening look at the world.
  • shaunshaun http://shaunmarrs.com/ - The Ultimate Resource For Free GSA Tool Tutorials!
    @JudderMan cheers man, I have been watching some YouTube videos about that side of it too. My end game is to live in Australlia tbh so might try jump to that and take holidays to SE Asia as and when.

    @doon GSA CB is around $150 now $250 not sure if you messed up a few other prices too.
  • How are you planning to sell your tools when license transfer is not allowed?

  • Doon - 
    I just read this link - and yes this is me to. I have bought lots of SEO tools for BH purposes.  I too use GSA as well (a happy customer).  I also agree with your white hat sentiment, at the same time I dont want to pay Google adwords.  

    SO I was stuck to - time is too valuable, life is too short to spend hours and hours doing this stuff. What I have found though is that people dont trust Google Adwords so much, and user behaviour means they will search the 'Keyword' and then look for other opinions / reviews / comparisons etc.

    I went in hunt for any tool that would monitor ANYTHING (youtube, blogs, forums, websites, social media etc) and would then alert me when it found ANYTHING on my niche products etc - so it works in the background while Im either doing something else or sleeping. 

    I could then read through the report and then chase after the discussions / debates on those platforms so I could answer specific REAL customers questions about the niche Im in.  Im adding valuable REAL content and analysis, Im giving benefit for others to read at a later date (free advertising) and the beauty of it is that I can respond as ME a business owner, or any number of other aliases - another customer, techie, sales, business owner etc - the ones I looked at were Hootsuite (but that only does Twitter) and BuzzBundle - which covers everything that I can see.

    The result - I run it once  a week - it runs over night - I then spend half a day answering questions about my niche - my sales have increased and I now spend a lot less time on SEO.  Although the rebel in me - still loves a BH seo challenge
  • BrandonBrandon Reputation Management Pro
    I just checked my email history and I bought my first copy of GSA SER in 2012. I don't care about the hat color I care about results.

    Both white and black hat tactics can get results, but their application shouldn't be the same. In the last 5 years, I've bought about 20 licenses of SER and spent probably 100x what you've referred to. Your results don't match my results even in the slightest.

    Just because you weren't able to find success doesn't mean the tools or tactics are to blame.
  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    From what I've seen, the biggest problem is that many people buying "black hat" tools don't understand basic seo concepts. For example, a few weeks ago @Doon was on here claiming that Majestic determined Trust Flow through clickstream data. No one with a solid understanding of link-based ranking algorithms would make such statements.

    To rephrase what @JudderMan said, learn how seo works before buying tools to automate it.
  • angelaangela UK
    edited February 1
    TF , CT or whatever flavour is the latest 'must do' thing in order to improve your SEO. Remember when keyword stuffing was all the rage and that everyone must do it - then Google changed the algo - and everyone had to quickly remove the keyword stuffing. Trust Flow could be the latest in a long line of 'must do' things only for Google to spoil it all for us.

    What works is whatever converts - and that usually is consumer trust or you have written something so compellingly interesting they have no option but to press the button and part with their money. Repeat business, word of mouth doesnt need SEO - it just needs good products and great service.

    Ive lost count the number of wild goose chases Ive been on - looking for the latest magic bullet to get me more sales conversions.  SEO is like a woman that men (or women) cant resist - or so hubby says.... social media monitoring tools I think are just as important as things for keyword research or on/off site seo.
  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    You didn't understand what I wrote. Trust Flow / Citation Flow have nothing to do with Google; they probably have some correlation to ranking, though it's debatable. There is nothing 'must do' about them and never has been. That said, they are models imitating the link-based algorithm that Google uses to rank websites. If you don't understand how they're computed and why, as @Doon clearly did not, you have some learning to do before going out and spending hundreds or thousands on seo tools.

    As for the rest of what you wrote, I think you would be a lot more comfortable at Moz.com. I'm not sure why you were compelled to create an account on a "blackhat" forum to lecture us about social media and "customer trust". Are you a sock puppet for OP?
  • Metrics are useless. I can run megaspamtaculars and increase TF40+ or block crawlers and have PBN links and have TF0....guess which site will rank and get traffic...
  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    Whether they are useless or not is in the eye of the beholder and wasn't my point. Here is the thread that I'm referring to: https://forum.gsa-online.de/discussion/comment/139968/

    Here is what @Doon actually said: "So basically how you could manipulate your TF ranking is by building a bot / tool. That will go to "url" to click on "target url" and maybe let it browse couple 2-3 random sites for x amount of minutes."

    It's incredibly stupid and shows a very poor understanding of seo. Which is fine, we all started from somewhere, none of us were born experts. However, to say stuff this stupid and then to turn around and lecture the rest of us is totally obnoxious and unacceptable.
  • edited February 3
    I'll also purchase any of the licenses you are not using these days!

    Best of luck with whatever hat you decide to put on for Google!

    I personally like "$$$GREEN$$$" hat!!!
  • edited February 3
    Was reading another of your post and you commented;

    The problem is that nothing lasts if you go black hat.

    Welcome to the world of SEO, my friend...

    You might be tempted to believe this only applies to what you define as "Blackhat", but it applies to GOOGLE, not any particular hat.  "Whitehat" has also changes constantly and nothing works for long.

    So I think we should quit calling it a color.  Let redefine it by what it really is:

    What Google Wants (Whitehat)
    What Google Does Not Want (Blackhat)

    I've been around doing SEO since about 5 year before Google started in 1999.  Since Sergey and Larry have been around they have done nothing but bully people to do what they want.

    Over the years "What Google Wants" changes from one thing to another.

    During the 2000's Google would tell you to ask for Recip Links and it was only a few years later that would get you banned.

    Nothing lasts in SEO PERIOD!!!

    Google does;
    • what they want
    • when they want
    • who they want
    • where they want
    • how they want

    It doesn't matter if you do not play by their rules or cuddle up in their bed next to daddy Page and Brin!

    White Hat
    Gray Hat
    Black Hat

    It doesn't matter, we are all competing against "What Google Wants".  There is no governing body that dictates this, ONLY GOOGLE!

    I've personally posted in the forums 3 years ago that this forums itself should be closed darkweb. https://forum.gsa-online.de/discussion/14433/am-i-the-only-person-disturbed-by-the-fact-we-use-google-to-search-gsa-forums

    I believe the fall from success SER has experienced is partially due to these forums being public and have been monitored to reverse engineer SER by Google top brains.

    Seriously, think about it. They have the world biggest research tool Google itself to investigate SER and combat it.  Imagine how easy it would be to rank in Google if we all had luxury of the same access to Google's ranking factors inner workings as they had to SER.

    But the element of surprise was lost years ago.  Thought if you just think of SER as a content delivery system you can submit whatever content you choose.

    Whether I have Ernest Hemmingway write an award-winning article and submit it with SER is all the same.

    SER is just a delivery tool for whatever "YOU WANT"; NOT what Google Wants.

    You get to wear whatever colorhat you like.
  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    You are STILL pushing this nonsense about how Majestic works? No wonder you've had nothing but failure for four years.
  • You could have built a PBN for the 2.5k.SER is dead for the most part.
  • 2Take22Take2 UK
    edited February 6
    @doon - White hat, black hat, it's all just SEO. You just need to use the right approach for the outcome you want. That could be pure churn and burn with link spam, pure white hat outreach, or somewhere in the middle.

    It seems strange to limit yourself to one approach or the other though if trying to rank, especially seeing as you can make your white hat 100 times more effective if you run a bit darker in the background, which is in fact what most of the big brand 'white hat' sites do anyway.

    My personal experience has been that regardless of the strategy you choose, google will almost never have the same site ranking in the top 3 for any commercially attractive keyword for too long anyway, almost like they hit the shuffle button from time to time. Unless of course you're a big brand site, then the rules will obviously be different.

    You're right in one way though, it's never a bad idea to diversify away from relying on google rankings as much as possible.
  • redraysredrays Las Vegas
    Diversification is really the key. The folks that I've seen get hit the hardest have been those who went all-in on one strategy, one traffic source, one whatever and then lost suddenly lost it for whatever reason. Plenty of websites who thought they were doing "white hat seo" got destroyed by panda / penguin. Plenty of affiliates who had moved to Adwords after panda / penguin got destroyed when Google nixed the right rail ads. So it goes when you don't diversify.
  • vignesh676vignesh676 Mumbai,India
    Doon : You have excellent variance of tools and many of those tools are very effective even now, if used in a streamlined manner. You need to be patient and try out different strategies. 
    Take a pause, Analyse what you were doing till now, Try something different   , monitor them.

    Moral is that this is a long journey and no shortcuts even though using tools.
    Internet marketing is a ever green area of expertise, So the knowledge you have learned till now is not wasted and can always be used.

  • kxpkxp United States
    Sorry to drag up an old post but @Doon, I just wanted to educate you a bit on Trust Flow. When Majestic's tooltip pops up saying "... which is weighted by the number of clicks from a seed set of trusted sites..."

    They're not literally meaning "clicking the link." What they're talking about is degrees of separation. So, let's say whitehouse.gov was one of their "trusted seed sites" and that site links to NASA.gov and NASA.gov links to JoesSpaceBlog.com and JoesSpaceBlog.com links to DoonsSpaceBlog.com. The degrees of separation looks like this:

    whitehouse.gov > nasa.gov > joesspaceblog.com > doonsspaceblog.com.

    This means that NASA is highly "trusted", Joe's Space Blog is trusted, but not as much as NASA, and Doon's Space Blog is trusted, but not as much as Joe's or NASA. There are 4 degrees of separation between Doon's Space Blog and whitehouse.gov.

    Each of those "hops" is what Majestic refers to as a "click" in your screenshot. So, literally clicking will not increase your trustflow (Majestic isn't omnipresent, they have no way to track all of the literal clicks every website on the internet receives).

    What Trustflow does is this: it has a core set of trusted sites. The more hops it takes to get to a site from one of those "seed sites" the less trusted it is. Trusted sites don't link to spammy blogs, which means that your average spammy blog will have a much higher degree of separation from the trusted site.

    Hopefully that makes sense.
  • royalmiceroyalmice WEBSITE: ---> http://asiavirtualsolutions.com | SKYPE:---> asiavirtualsolutions
    Many people think that the more BH or SEO tools they buy the better they will rank.
    Unfortunately most people never fully master even one of the many tools they buy, some people end up not even using all the tools they buy, because they find it "too hard", "too complex", "too difficult", "takes too much time", and then simply move on and buy yet another magic tool that improve rank with push of a button.

    If only you spend time and FULLY master 1 of the tools you buy, you will save allot of money and see better results.

    STOP BLAMING THE BHW TOOL'S - BLAME THE IDIOT USING THE TOOL WRONG

  • or there is this. So-called white hat operators are among the biggest black hat people around. to label anyone or anything as one or the other doesn't make sense. there is a set of best practices that always hold true across all algo updates. stick to those. tools don't matter. they are just a way to get point A>point B. Nothing more. The white hat items doon outlined, I do those and I am active in black hat. so what. I am color blind. The only thing that matters is ranking. If you're not ranking it's not the tools, it's your strategy. I got caught up in Fred in March. Had to go back to basics and I am back to ranking. It's not so hard when you stick to the basics.
  • Doon

    I don't agree with you at all. There are tons of BHters include me which having huge sucess.  i do youtube and super spammy niches only with GSA SER and RankerX and few outsources works @Doon

    you should understand its come and@Doon

    if you don't trust me just type some niches and check their backlinking profiles.you will see how many users sucess with bh@Doon

    theres nothing called bh or wh@Doon


    you have spent you have purchased that doesnt mean you have knowdlge@Doon


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