Search engine optimization can be very confusing and time consuming to learn, especially if you only have limited knowledge of web design and development – and you don’t have the time nor the desire to learn all about it. For this reason, many people choose to hire professional SEO providers to take care of it for them. That is usually the best choice, but you will be doing yourself a huge favor if you take the time to learn the basics of SEO, even if you have no intention of actually being involved in the process. Do a little homework and you will have a better understanding of what you can reasonably expect. Your SEO people will be happier too, since they won’t have to spend as much time justifying everything they do, debunking myths or explaining why you should not do certain things. Your SEO consultant will be able to spend more time doing what good SEOs do: getting your website to rank higher in search results and bring more & better traffic to your website. And you will be able to spend your time running your business or something much more relaxing.
Where do you begin to learn the basics of search engine optimization?
There are thousands of websites who claim to have all the answers, and some are very good. Unfortunately, most of them are not. There is no comprehensive “SEO 101″ course or independent certification; though there are some very good SEO resources like Moz.com if you really want to dig in to the details. If you want to get a handle on just the basics, go straight to the people that make the “rules”. Google’s Webmaster Guidelines should be required reading for, well, webmasters – and anyone who is even considering doing their own SEO. Google also has an interactive “How Search Works” infographic, and a really helpful Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide which will help you learn what you can do yourself to get your website to rank higher in searches, and how to understand why your SEO company does what it does, and why they may refuse to do some of the things you asked for because you “read it somewhere”.