Getting Started with SEO

07 Mar 2011, 2 min read.

The internet is buzzing with discussion about Google’s latest update (Farmer or Panda depending on where you read). Is SEO dead? Hardly so, but some believe that it is no longer a viable strategy. I disagree, and Danny Sullivan wrote an article this week about this exact topic: SEO Remains A Viable Marketing Strategy For Anyone.

With all of these rumors, theories, and controversy, where should you go to get started with SEO? Is there even a reliable source for real, accurate, white hat SEO advice? Yes, there are many, but one in particular could trump them all. Google has its own SEO starter guide, so go direct to the top search engine itself for the best SEO advice.

The starter guide takes a look at all of the basics of SEO. It doesn’t tell you how to write the best title tag, meta description, or how to structure your site architecture. It does share what users and Google are looking for when they come to a website. The guide shares some best practices, and many resources for more information. Most importantly, Google declares what SEO is all about and reiterates that consumers are the end consumer:

“Even though this guide’s title contains the words ‘search engine’, we’d like to say that you should base your optimization decisions first and foremost on what’s best for the visitors of your site. They’re the main consumers of your content and are using search engines to find your work. Focusing too hard on specific tweaks to gain ranking in the organic results of search engines may not deliver the desired results. Search engine optimization is about putting your site’s best foot forward when it comes to visibility in search engines, but your ultimate consumers are your users, not search engines.”

If you want to know how to get started with SEO, the first thing you should do is try to understand what users are looking for from your site and other sites in your industry. Once you know what users want, get started with the basics from Google’s SEO starter guide.

SEO is still a viable medium to deliver your content to user who will love it. It all begins with creating content that users want to engage with, because without great content, the whole model falls apart. As the meme goes, “Content is King.”

Download the starter guide here: Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide

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