Selling Links from High Profile Websites and Other Unethical Practices
Internet ethics is coming into the media spotlight as an increasing number of deceptive practices have arisen. There’s no question that the Internet is a new frontier. Just as the Old West had gunslingers and lawless characters, you find the same thing happening today with the worldwide web.
One of the most recent scams is selling links from high profile websites to boost SEO value for a customer’s website.
BuzzFeed News recently published an article about underground marketers selling high profile links. In fact, the article gave some shocking examples.
Patricia Disney’s Memorial Site
A former Walt Disney executive, Roy Disney, had a first wife named Patricia who passed away in 2012. In recognition of her philanthropic activities, her memorial site at WeLovePatty.com enabled viewers to make charity donations in memory of her. While the domain still exists, Patty’s memorial page is gone. In fact, after her family quit paying for the domain name, unscrupulous marketers bought the domain and sold it. The domain now forwards to blaze4days.com where you see a cannabis site promoting its products.
The same thing has happened with other prominent links from Forbes, The New York Times, The Guardian, CNN, BBC and well-known news media sites.
Using a former site’s domain in this way is an example of black hat SEO.
What Is Black Hat SEO?
Black hat SEO is a coined word that describes unethical SEO practices. More specifically, a developer or web marketing company engages in practices that violate search engine guidelines. They do so with the purpose of boosting SEO rankings.
The article also gave an example of an unethical web practice that created fake websites or wrote false content to cover up a client’s criminal background. A company did this for Adrian Rubin, a convicted payday loan scammer. They used his name and created numerous fake online personalities to help him hide his criminal conviction online.
This, however, is not the same tactic as redirecting links.
An even more nefarious practice, designed to ruin a web company’s marketing is redirecting the domain to a web page containing malware. Malware is software designed to harm or access a computer system without the owner’s permission. When web viewers arrive at the page and see Google’s malware warning notice, they can’t click away fast enough.
A specific malware example is unauthorized use of keylogger software. Keylogger is spyware that captures the computer user’s keystrokes. Installing a keylogger without the user’s knowledge or consent is illegal. Even worse, criminals can use a keylogger to capture logins and steal the person’s identity.
White Hat SEO
It’s our firm policy at Web Perseverance to educate and warn clients against black hat SEO and help them understand its opposite — what white hat SEO is. White hat SEO is a term that refers to SEO practices, which are in compliance with search engine rules and policies. We can help you attract website visitors through white hat, or standard SEO, web design and development practices. We can also effectively market your site by writing engaging web content.
Web Perseverance is a web marketing company. We help businesses create strategic and productive marketing on the Internet
Directing the Website Viewer’s Attention
Negative space refers to the space surrounding the main subject/object in an image, picture or photograph. Artists have long known that negative space can make the subject stand out or get lost.
On the other hand, positive space refers to the space the subject/object occupies.
Achieving a balance between positive and negative space that is aesthetically pleasing is what graphic designers and artists typically aim for. Also, when marketing your product, there are main images and text that you want as the main focus. They should grab most of your viewer’s attention.
Positive Space to the Extreme
Some puzzles, such as the game “Where’s Waldo?” are great examples of positive space taken to the extreme. Below is an example where you can see how the items the girl is trying to find have gotten lost in the pile of objects occupying the positive space.
How Negative Space Can Create a Dramatic Effect that Draws Attention
In contrast, putting a solid dark background around the subject/object can make the object stand out and completely engage the viewer’s attention.
Here’s an example:
You can almost taste the chocolate and ice cream melting in your mouth.
Variation Can Break Up a Sea of Text
Have you ever opened up a website that was a sea of text? Paragraphs and paragraphs of text or long paragraphs with little to no variation are what we’re referring to here. The amount of text is overwhelming and sends viewers clicking away to other websites.
Through the use of different paragraph sizes, subheads, bullet points and varying fonts, interspaced with images and empty space you can transform a boring sea of text. The page can evoke emotions in the viewer that they will associate with the product.
Colors can also add variety that makes a design element stand out. The call to action “Contact Us” button created in a different accent color creates a contrast with other elements on the page and can jump out at the viewer.
How Cramming in a Few More Messages Can Ruin the Layout and Focus
All too often, clients want to cram in one more money making message. They see “wasted” space and want to be sure all of it is used. Unfortunately, when a boatload of messages hit a viewer all at once, viewers feel bombarded. They typically click away without grasping any of the messages. Hence the saying: “Sometimes less is more.”
What website is in your world of imagination?
Web Perseverance is a web marketing company. We help businesses create strategic and productive marketing on the Internet.
Location Based Marketing
When you do a search, what do you type into the search box? Well, it depends on what you’re searching. If you’re going to purchase something from an online store, you probably just search the store name. Convenience is at the touch of your fingers, and your purchases arrive without even having to leave your home.
However, let’s say you’re looking for a lawyer to represent you in your divorce. First you type in “divorce lawyer.” If you live on Long Island, you’re not going to want to travel all the way to New York City or Connecticut or New Jersey. Having a California divorce attorney pop up won’t be very helpful either. So you type in “divorce lawyer Long Island.” A number of directories and law firm websites pop up. Even better, wouldn’t it be great if the attorney were close by so you didn’t have to drive too far. At this point you get more specific and type in “divorce lawyer Huntington Station, Long Island.”
The beauty of life in today’s digital world is you don’t have to be sitting in front of your desktop computer either. You can pull out your iPad or mobile phone and do the search wherever you are.
What Does Geographic Location Mean for Business Websites and Web Content?
Thanks to changes in Google’s search algorithms, people typically see search items pop up that are close to their IP address.
Web developers have been savvy about including business location in website content for some time now, but in recent years, the tools have only gotten better. Google My Business has made online marketing even easier and more direct.
What Is a Google My Business Account?
Google My Business enables you to upload information in Google about your business, such as:
- Your location
- Contact information
- Website domain
- Hours of Operation
- Professional photos of your location
Potential customers or clients can find you on Google Maps and when doing a Google search for your business.
For decades, businesses have used marketing and advertising to get the word out about their services and products.
The good news is that today’s online marketing opens up many avenues to market your business online — whether through websites, social media, online searches or other tools.
Marketing professionals can help you maximize your marketing efforts.
What type of marketing is in your world of imagination?
Web Perseverance is an Internet marketing company. We help businesses create strategic and productive marketing on the web.
Attorney Advertising is subject to numerous rules set by the American Bar Association (ABA) and the New York State Bar Association. The New York Rules of Professional Conduct have sections that specifically address web design and online marketing.
While the New York Rules of Professional Conduct is broad in scope, our team at Web Perseverance is familiar with the particular rules that apply to web marketing. We have provided Internet marketing for many law firms during the early stages of web marketing and up to the present.
We ensure that all of the content and design for any website we create is pre-approved by the lawyer before launching the website. We have incorporated this practice into our web design based on the following New York Rules of Professional Conduct:
Under NY Rules 7.1 (k), attorneys or the law firm must pre-approve all advertisements.
Pre-approval applies to advertising in websites, blogs, chat rooms, list servers, emails, instant messaging, banner advertisements, pop-up advertisements, pop-under advertisements, search engines and other internet-related presence. [Rule 1.0(c)]
Restrictions for Factually Supported Statements
You have possibly seen attorney websites that claim to be the top in their field or tout the idea that they are better at obtaining compensation for clients than other law firms. They use superlatives like “the top,” “the most,” “the most prestigious,” or other marketing language that businesses can get away with in other industries. However this type of marketing promotion can get law firms in trouble in the legal profession.
The following rule specifically prohibits this type of advertising:
 Descriptions of characteristics of the lawyer or law firm that are not comparative and do not involve results obtained are permissible even though they cannot be factually supported. Such statements are understood to be general descriptions and not claims about quality, and would not be likely to mislead potential clients. Accordingly, a law firm could advertise that it is “Hard-Working,” “Dedicated,” or “Compassionate” without the necessity to provide factual support for such subjective claims. On the other hand, descriptions of characteristics of the law firm that compare its services with those of other law firms and that are not susceptible of being factually supported could be misleading to potential clients. Accordingly, a lawyer may not advertise that the lawyer is the “Best,” “Most Experienced,” or “Hardest Working.” Similarly, some claims that involve results obtained are not susceptible of being factually supported and could be misleading to potential clients. Accordingly, a law firm may not advertise that it will obtain “Big $$$,” “Most Money,” or “We Win Big.” (New York Rules of Professional Conduct, Page 173, section 12)
We look out for our clients’ interests and work diligently to provide marketing that is appropriate for the client’s industry. We share your objectives to promote and expand your businesses and will work closely with you to create a presence on the web that is right for your business.
Web Perseverance is an Internet marketing company that helps businesses create strategic and productive marketing on the web.