SEO Tutorial 2014 – Updated September 2014
Welcome to the best SEO Tutorial online with regular updates for almost a decade, here you will find answers to common and not so common search engine optimization (SEO) questions. WordPress users should also take a look at the WordPress SEO Tutorial as well.
Unlike a lot of SEO experts I do most of the SEO research myself, avoiding the guesswork and speculation so many SEO consultants and experts rely upon when they acquire their search engine optimization information from webmaster forums, Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups, Twitter etc…!
You will NOT find contradictory information within the tutorial like you tend to find in even the best SEO forums and SEO Facebook groups which are filled with clueless amateur SEOs, if I’m not sure about an SEO hypothesis or theory I’ll include my thought process and arguments why I think in a particular way rather than SEO bullshit my way through the information.
Want to take advantage of my 10 years plus SEO research and experience, buy my WordPress SEO Package which is a culmination of my SEO expertise. You found this SEO Tutorial because this website runs on my WordPress SEO package and you can have a search engine optimized website just like this one.
SEO Tutorial Step by Step for Beginners
To obtain maximum search engine rankings, it is essential to understand how your target audience is searching for information via search engines like Google.
When your potential visitors and customers use search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo… to find products, information and online services, they type a set of keywords or phrases. Google in particular has an advanced search engine algorithm called Hummingbird which can even handle the nuances of natural language. A natural language search like “Where can I find an SEO Tutorial for Beginners?” for example.
For the target audience to find your website on the search engines in 2014, your webpages should contain not just basic keyword phrases (like SEO tutorial or search engine optimization tutorial), but natural language phrases and semantic derivatives in preparation for the future. 2014 is only the beginning of where Google will take natural language search engine optimization in the future, we need to get ahead of the SEO game and be ready for Google SEO 2015, 2016 and beyond.
I appreciate the above sound like a bunch of technical waffle and you might be asking what is natural language searches and semantic derivatives :-)
Hummingbird SEO Natural Language Searches and Semantic derivatives
If a webpage on your site is about an “SEO Tutorial” the phrase “SEO Tutorial” and its semantically related derivatives (i.e. Ethical SEO Tutorial, Search Engine Optimization Tutorial etc…) should be used throughout the text (this is basic semantic SEO), within the anchor text of links and other important areas of the webpages code. Also individual keywords of a multiple keyword phrase should be used, so in the above example the words SEO and Tutorial should be used throughout the text, not only together, but alone or in association with other relevant keywords and phrases (this is SEO 101).
As important are natural language derivatives, for example a simple search in Google for SEO Tutorial at the bottom of the results are the Google “Searches Related to”:
You can get more results like these at Google Trends https://www.google.com/trends/explore#q=SEO%20tutorial you’ll note the two results don’t match up, use them both to determine what your target audience is ACTUALLY searching for, not what you think they should be searching for and try to add the phrases, derivative phrases and semantic alternatives (tutorial synonyms: guide, training, coaching….) of what is being searched for: use a thesaurus to find synonyms http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/tutorial.
A natural language search related to SEO tutorial is “SEO tutorial step by step pdf 2014″, this is a search phrase a user might use to find a PDF version of an article, what the user is looking for is a Step by step SEO tutorial that’s in PDF format and up to date, but real people using Google won’t type:
I’m looking for a step by step SEO tutorial in PDF format that’s up to date please
Real search engine users break the query down into the important parts and Google is getting quite good at understanding this type of search, what the visitor is really looking for.
A semantic derivative of this sort of search might be “Search engine optimization tutorial step by step pdf 2014″.
Is Your Website SEO Optimized?
The above SEO advice to use your keywords might seem like common sense, but take 30 minutes to read through your web sites important pages before continuing this SEO tutorial and ask yourself “do they shout about your product or service, are they optimized for the search engines?”
If not you’ll find this Search Engine Optimization Tutorial an essential aid to the future SEO success of your web site.
Quick SEO Tip – note above how rather than writing “If not you’ll find this Tutorial useful” we added the important phrase “Search Engine Optimization Tutorial” another derivative/semantic SERP of SEO Tutorial. Being long winded is a prerequisite to good SEO copyrighting!
What’s Covered in by the Search Engine Optimization Tutorial
When a search engine spider like Googlebot analyzes a web page, it determines relevancy based on the search engines algorithm, a formula that calculates how web pages are ranked in that search engines results pages (SERPs). The most important search engine (generates most traffic), Google bases it’s algorithm on at least 200 factors with both onpage SEO factors; body text, title tag, headers, anchor text, images etc… and off page SEO factors; text links to the page, especially the anchor text and PageRank (PR) of text links ranking highly.
As an SEO consultant I’ve analyzed and reanalyzed almost every aspect of the search engine algorithms and this SEO Tutorial will reveal the SEO secrets of the major search engine Google.
Ethical and Unethical SEO Techniques
There has been a lot of discussion in the SEO community/forums about ethical and unethical SEO techniques (or whitehat and blackhat SEO). I do not consider myself ethical nor an unethical SEO consultant and so this SEO tutorial is neither ethical nor blackhat.
I research ALL aspects of search engine optimization using my own domains (it would be unethical to use clients sites for SEO tests like my ethical SEO expert test) and have in the pursuit of SEO knowledge had more than my fair share of domains penalized/banned by Google. Through this free tutorial we will deal with both the recommended SEO techniques (no to low risk white hat) and the not so recommended SEO techniques (possibly unethical to some SEO firms and high risk black hat) detailing potential risks and rewards.
It will be up to you which search engine optimization techniques you employ to your website: would suggest whitehat SEO techniques since a banned website makes little revenue!
On with the SEO Tutorial
Let’s start at the very beginning. You have a great idea for a million dollar business; you’ve researched your niche market and ideally have a business plan in place so you have a good idea what you need to do to make your business a success. Since you are reading this SEO tutorial it’s reasonable to assume your business needs a web site that you want to rank highly in the search engines (especially Google).
One of the first things you have to do is choose a domain and a business name for your web site. Even if you have your business name and domain name etc… already I advise you don’t skip the first section Domain Name SEO since there are some very important concepts and SEO techniques that I’ll be introducing.
Don’t limit yourself to these SEO tutorials, I’ve a SEO WordPress Tutorial series as well, even if you don’t use WordPress it’s worth a read.
SEO Tutorials Covered
1. Business and Domain Name Choice : You might think what’s the name of my business got to do with search engine optimization (SEO)? If you choose the correct business and domain name in the first place it makes the whole optimization process so much easier….
2. WebSite Optimization : In this section of our SEO Tutorial we’ll broadly introduce on site optimization, how to optimize your web site for better search engine rankings with good Google rankings our primary goal….
3. Title Optimization : The TITLE element of your web page (found within the HEAD) is very important, probably the most important part of a page (especially for placement in Google and Yahoo) and should ideally be optimized for a small number of keywords or phrases….
4. Meta Tags Optimization : There used to be a time when the contents of a pages Meta Tags was very important, it was around about the same time the Berlin Wall was still standing!! Today meta tags hold little value to Search Engine Optimization (SEO)….
5. Anchor Text Optimization : Google (and to a lesser degree other search engines) heavily weight it’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) towards the anchor text of links to a page. This can be demonstrated by looking at extreme examples where a pages high ranking can only be attributed to anchor text and no other SEO factors….
6. SERPs Competition : Your websites Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) are determined by various SEO factors, on page content (your body text, the title element etc…), anchor text of links to your web sites pages, the search engines algorithms tweak of the day and of course the number of websites/pages competing for that search phrase. In this section of the SEO Tutorial I’ll deal with estimating the number of competitors for a SERP….
7. PageRank PR : PageRank or PR for short seems to be misunderstood by so many that this part of the SEO Tutorial will try to explain the ins and outs of PageRank without getting too technical….
8. Google Sandbox Effect : A lot has been written about the so called Google Sandbox Effect in SEO forums over the last few year or so, but not much of it is backed by reality or facts. Find out what the sandbox really is….
9. Fresh Content SEO : An SEO question that arises from time to time is does Google prefer fresh SEO content? And if Google does prefer fresh content, would on a database driven website automatically varying the important SEO areas of a webpage: title tag, meta tags, alt text of images….
10. Buy BackLinks : As a business considering buying quality backlinks, if you are willing to accept the risks of Google banning your website for buying links for SEO gain, when purchasing text links you must think long term (a year minimum) as otherwise you are wasting your time and money….
11. SEO Services : Is this the time to hire an SEO firm? Depends on what the SEO business is offering you, your SEO budget and what you expect from your investment….
12. SEO Checks : This Amazon SEO Check guide isn’t how to rank high on Amazon, this is literally SEO checking Amazon.com for SEO mistakes that will impact their Google rankings….
Other SEO Tutorials and Resources
Hope you enjoy the SEO Tutorial.
Author: David Law (SEO Expert)