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The Beginner’s Guide to SEO

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Welcome to the beginning of your educational journey in SEO! To make the most of this guide, let your keen interest in learning about search engine optimization be the driving force behind your actions and experiments.

This guide aims to cover all the essential elements of SEO, from identifying the key terms and phrases (known as keywords) that will bring targeted traffic to your website, to optimizing your site to be more search-engine friendly, to engaging in link-building and promoting your site’s unique offerings.

While the realm of search engine optimization can seem intricate and in a state of constant evolution, understanding the fundamental principles can be straightforward. Even a basic grasp of SEO can lead to significant strides in web performance. Fortunately, there’s no lack of free educational resources on SEO available online, including guides like this one – and that’s something to celebrate!

By combining the knowledge from this information with real-world practice, you are setting yourself on a path to become proficient in SEO.

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Understanding the Foundations of Search Engine Optimization Have you ever encountered Maslow’s hierarchy of needs? This psychological framework arranges human necessities from the most basic, such as air, water, and safety, to more complex needs like esteem and belonging. The concept is simple: without meeting the fundamental needs first, the more complex ones remain unattainable. Similarly, social connections mean little in the absence of sustenance.

Inspired by this concept, our founder, Rand Fishkin, crafted an analogous pyramid to elucidate the approach one should take to SEO, which has been fondly named “Mozlow’s hierarchy of SEO needs.”

Here’s what it looks like:

As you can see, the foundation of good SEO begins with ensuring crawl accessibility, and moves up from there.

Using this beginner’s guide, we can follow these seven steps to successful SEO:

  1. Crawl accessibility so engines can read your website
  2. Compelling content that answers the searcher’s query
  3. Keyword optimized to attract searchers & engines
  4. Great user experience including a fast load speed and compelling UX
  5. Share-worthy content that earns links, citations, and amplification
  6. Title, URL, & description to draw high click-through-rate (CTR) in the rankings
  7. Snippet/schema markup to stand out in SERPs

We’ll spend time on each of these areas throughout this guide, but we wanted to introduce it here because it offers a look at how we structured the guide as a whole.

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