Every business with a website (which should be all businesses by now, really) needs to be thinking about search engine optimization. If you’re new to the concept, search engine optimization, usually shortened as SEO, describes any work a website owner or professional consultant undertakes to increase a website’s ranking in the search engines.
Think about your own online habits. When you turn to Google looking for something, how often do you click to the second page to see the results there? How often do you even look beyond the top two or three results on the page? Data shows about a third of people go for the first link, and click-through rates drop considerably from there down to only 2% for those at the bottom of page one.
SEO is competitive and therefore complicated, but nonetheless it’s worth it for every business to understand as much as possible and do what they can to increase their visibility online. If you’re a business owner or you run a website of any kind, you should make learning about SEO a top priority.
Here are a few of the best blogs online that will help you do so.
Moz is arguably the most trusted site for all things SEO. If you’re new, their Beginner’s Guide to SEO is invaluable. If you already know the basics, their blog is full of up-to-date educational resources, SEO tips, and experiments into what works best. Many of the most experienced SEO professionals contribute posts to the Moz blog and the editors are picky about the quality of the content they take, so you can count on any information you find there being high quality and useful.
Search Engine Journal goes a little broader than just covering SEO, with content on social media and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising as well, but SEO is still their main focus. They have a mix of blog posts that are good for beginners, as well as important updates and tips for more experienced SEOs to be aware of as well.
Search Engine Land provides content on any topic related to search engines, with a primary emphasis on SEO. They cover updates to search engines and any search engine related product, provide tips on doing different aspects of SEO well, and generally provide educational information useful to anyone that practices search engine marketing.
Search Engine Watch covers general trends in marketing and advertising, but as the name suggests, the site is concerned first and foremost with providing information related to search engine marketing. With a lot of content focused on helping marketers with recent and future trends (like mobile and voice search), it’s a good blog for helping you stay up to date on the fast-moving world of SEO.
5. SEO Book
While most of the blogs listed above have a broader focus that goes beyond just SEO, SEO Book is more directly focused on SEO issues specifically. They sometimes go a bit deeper into the technical side of things as a result, so this site is best for website owners that have already learned the basics of SEO.
Search Engine Roundtable is another respected resource on news related to the search engines. A lot of their content focuses on announcements and updates made by the companies that dominate the search engine space (especially Google). It’s a good spot to check in for the search engine news likely to influence your SEO strategy.
SEMRush sells a product that helps businesses do keyword and ranking research to help with SEO, so it makes sense that their blog would focus on the practice of performing SEO well. Their posts tackle tips for doing SEO effectively, ways to avoid penalties, and case studies to help readers learn from companies that have pulled off traffic and ranking improvements.
Yoast is known as the #1 SEO plugin for WordPress. The blog has helpful insights on how to use the plugin for your SEO work, as well as helpful SEO basics for content SEO, rechnical SEO, analytics, and eCommerce.
What better way to learn about Google algorithm updates than direct from the search engine itself? The blog defines itself as the “officials news for crawling and indexing” updates from Google. The Google Webmaster blog has regular posts on major updates you should know that will impact your rankings and your regular tasks in Google Search Console.
The SearchMetrics blog looks at trends and useful updates in online marketing in general and SEO in particular. Their posts often dive into more specific SEO topics, like SEO for certain industries or geographic regions.
The Ahrefs blog primarily covers SEO topics, but occasionally branches into other fields of online marketing. They often include case studies, guides, and in-depth research to help businesses gain a thorough understanding of different aspects of SEO and marketing.
The Brightedge SEO blog is yet another site website owners can turn to for general education and tips on various SEO issues. They cover search engine updates, and look at topics like guest posting and performing SEO in other countries. They’re another good site to keep your eye on for up-to-date information and a wide variety of SEO tips.
13. SEO by the Sea
SEO By the Sea is a blog focused on analyzing how the search engines work. By focusing on things like patents search engine companies file and other information they release directly, the blog is able to dive deep into the workings of the often mysterious search engine algorithms to help SEO experts better understand how search ranking works and what they can do to improve theirs.
The QuickSprout blog is focused on ways websites can grow their traffic. The posts there consistently include in depth research and examples to help readers better take actionable insights away from their reading. While the blog goes broader into online marketing than just SEO, many of the blog posts focus on tips and techniques important to improving SEO.
15. Raven Tools
The Raven Tools blog covers a lot of SEO tips and technical topics that are important to doing SEO well. The brand behind the blog provides tools that help customers create marketing reports, so a common theme in their topics is figuring out how to incorporate data and analysis into your strategy.
SEO isn’t something you can learn once and feel like you have it down. It’s a practice that continually evolves as search engines make updates and try out new things. If you care about how well your website performs, then keeping an eye on SEO tips, tricks, and updates like those covered in the blogs listed here is well worth your time.
Kristen Hicks is an Austin-based freelance content writer and lifelong learner with an ongoing curiosity to learn new things. She uses that curiosity, combined with her experience as a freelance business owner, to write about subjects valuable to small business owners on the HostGator blog. You can find her on Twitter at @atxcopywriter.