If I were teach SEO Basics to new students of search engine optimization, I’d tell them they need to think of the search engine marketing field in 3 larger sections:
- Keyword Research
- On Site or On Page Optimization (with or without the hyphens)
- Link Building
There are potentially other parts of SEO that some in the profession who’ve been around for years might argue we could add or subtract, but these are the basics of this field that’s no more than 12 years old in it’s current iteration. I define SEO as having two larger periods of time “pre-google” (approximately 1993-1999 when the likes of Lycos, Altavista and Yahoo dominated) and “post-google” (1999 and beyond). In the first period of SEO, it wasn’t as much SEO as it was possibly SEM or what I like to more accurately define as PPC Marketing or Paid marketing. You paid for your way into peoples’ faces in search engines. There was less of an organic dominance…even though some people found ways to “trick” the system at all stages of Search Engine Marketing from the beginning of the Internet.
With the adwords tool, Google tells us the top 5 relevant phrases (sorting them via an [exact] search query) are:
- seo techniques
- small business seo
- seo prices
- learn seo basics
- google seo basics
Obviously, google would be biased and place it’s own search engine in this list, but it’s probably not just because they have an obvious subjective opinion on the matter, but it’s because approximately 65% of the searches are actually conducted on Google in the U.S. and even higher throughout the world. So, understanding how to SEO Google is probably more worth your time in truly understand SEO Basics. The other phrases in the list make sense minus “seo prices”, but it does if you think of “basics” not from an academic perspective. If you think of what are some “basic” things you would like to know from a financial perspective, you would probably need to know the pricing of the services. So, this “relevance” is definitely determined by what people are searching for and interpretation can have multiple meanings.
Some great sites to learn SEO Basics include:
- google’s search engine optimization starter guide (warning, this is a .pdf download); other languages available from this post on the google blog
- “Search Posts” on Google’s Official Blog
- seobook & aaron wall even wrote a good knol that is titled “seo basics“
- matt cutt’s and his google/seo posts
- google webmasters article about seo (warning, this url could change & so just searching for this phrase can probably get to you to it as well)
I could probably share some more, but this will keep you very busy I’m sure. It took me 4+ years to get “comfortable” with SEO.
p.s. Here’s a nice infographic on how SEO works from Google’s standpoint.