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What is the best way to learn SEO?

How have you learned SEO - did you study a course on SEO fundamentals or did you pick it up as you went along? What would you say is the best way to learn SEO?

Top voted answer
Hatty Bell

Hatty Bell, Community Manager at

Would love to hear your thoughts on this @Quentin Aisbett @Tom Valcanis @Adrienne McLean !

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Quentin Aisbett

Quentin Aisbett, Founder at

This is a good question and one that will no doubt attract varying opinions. I typically recommend people spend the time to identify trusted experts and resources and then lean on them before getting out and simply working on your own site's SEO. 

My point about spending the time in identifying the trusted sources is an important one because different 'experts' have different opinions.  And with only a few publicised ranking factors, much of it is subjective, so no experts can be definitive in their own opinions - They can, however, have their own theories based on comments from Google and tests they've run themselves.

I would recommend starting with Brian Dean and his website Backlinko.com.  He has compiled some incredible resources and he makes it very easy to follow for beginners and seasoned veterans alike. The Yoast.com blog also has some great posts, although they're far from the in-depth resources that Brian Dean publishes but perhaps well-suited to beginners. Others I always recommend following once you want to get a little more advanced include - Kevin Indig, Marie Haynes, Glenn Gabe, Brodie Clark,  and Cyrus Shepard. Also, be sure to check out the Ahrefs blog and listen to the Evolving SEO podcast.

But you do need to complement the theory with your own practice. Work on your own site, test your own hypotheticals and see what works. 



 

Hatty Bell

Hatty Bell, Community Manager at

Thanks for your insight @Quentin Aisbett ! Some fantastic resources here. Is each site different in terms of what works then? There's no step-by-step SEO manual?

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Luat Duong

Luat Duong, SEO Lead at

Backlinko, NeilPatel, Ahrefs, SEMRush, SearchEngineJournal, @SEOsupre.me

All the blogs above are great except for one thing - email templates. Do not use their templates. It's completely overused and people recognize it every time. I made the mistake of using their templates when starting out and the conversion rate of my outreach was horribly low.

You can use a template to scale outreach but do write your own template and personalize the heck out of it.

It's always a learning process with SEO. You read up on how a pro does something, you do it, you find out that something is not working, you tweak it for future campaigns, you try it again, it works, you get results.

 

Hatty Bell

Hatty Bell, Community Manager at

Great approach @Luat Duong - what do you use the templates for? Outreach to sites for backlinks?

Luat Duong

Luat Duong, SEO Lead at

Yes! Email outreach templates from a lot of sites are available for everyone and it's easily recognizable. You can take inspiration from them and make your own version, though!

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Janice Wald

Janice Wald

There are many ways I'd recommend to learn SEO that I'd recommend. First, study. I spent many years reading articles written by SEO experts such as Neil Patel to learn how to optimize my website content for search engines. I still read as many articles as I find time for. Then, I incorporated listening to podcasts about SEO in addition to reading articles. I recommend the podcast Search News You can use by Marie Haynes. Next, I added watching videos to listening to podcasts and reading blog posts. I watch Ahrefs videos many nights a week. Finally, I learned by trial and error-- seeing what works and what doesn't. For instance, I learned the hard way what keywords my content can rank for and the difficulty level of the content my keywords can't rank for. All these methods will help you learn SEO and save you thousands of dollars on SEO courses you don't need to spend. 

Hatty Bell

Hatty Bell, Community Manager at

Thanks @Janice Wald - so many great tips here!

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Hatty Bell

Hatty Bell, Community Manager at

Would love to get your insight here too @Emanuel Petrescu 

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