Five of the Most Despicable Online Marketing Techniques

Enjoy today’s guest post from Tom Koh. Tom is an SEO enthusiast who runs his own internet business and is sharing some of the more unattractive SEO ploys he has run into during his time doing so.

SEO can sometimes have a bit of a bad reputation. While good SEO is of course a perfectly legitimate and effective way to market a website or online business, many people view it as a ‘dodgy’ technique with dubious morals and many people are somewhat distrusting of SEO and online marketers in general.

Why is this?

Well mostly it’s thanks to a handful of bad eggs, people still using ‘black hat’ SEO and unscrupulous marketing strategies to bring traffic to their sites. These are the people who ruin it for everyone else, and they’re also the bane of both visitors and the other marketers who do play by the rules.

Here, we will look at five rather unfair SEO and marketing strategies that the bad guys are employing. Know to avoid these techniques and be ready to defend yourself against those who do.

Negative SEO

Negative SEO is a reverse form of SEO. Here you are doing bad SEO for a competitor’s website with the intention of thinning out the competition.

If you are targeting the keyphrase ‘Make Money Online,’ then you might find the site at the top spot and build lots of low quality links for that page with the intention of getting them penalized. Negative SEO is something you need to be aware of and stay on the look-out for in case it is used against you. It’s also completely evil…


Calling spam bots evil would be to give them too much credit – they’re hardly even effective enough to be classified as evil. All they are is completely and utterly irritating, and they’re made more so by the fact that they probably took some smart coding to create in the first place that could have been put to some much better use.

Still, they involve mooching off someone else’s success and damaging their ranking by stealing link juice. And that’s fairly evil…


Spam bots scour the web in a similar way to search bots, and then bombard sites with links and promotional material. What’s more evil is actually hacking a site in order to alter the code and give yourself a contextual link on someone else’s page.

It’s highly frustrating for the web owner and is the internet equivalent of breaking and entering, then putting graffiti all over someone’s walls.

Bad Reviews

Giving someone a bad review to thin competition is a simpler version of negative SEO, one that you can use for services, for products and for apps and e-books. Of course this really isn’t playing fair, especially when you think of the work that person might have put in to create their product.

Push Notification Advertising

This is one of the most annoying and upsetting new marketing strategies to be used by site owners these days. Essentially this involves creating an Android App that’s ‘free’, but then making it stick notifications at the top every hour or so advertising porn or other unwanted apps. Both the app developers who allow this and the marketers who use the service are to blame here.

Tom Koh is an avid blogger and an expert in internet marketing. He explains the perils of buying free traffic for your website.

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