The Ultimate List of Basic SEO Resources for a Kick-Ass Start

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I have plenty of people contacting me to ask to refer to some SEO basics tutorials and guides. So I decided to start a post inviting everyone to share their favorite resources to start learning SEO.

Quick note for the beginners: when starting to learn SEO, please keep in mind that there are many questionable issues. So after going through the basics and starting to go further into detail, don’t forget to take any SEO advice with a grain of salt.

I’ll start the list with the following high-quality resources:

1. Beginner’s Guide:

SEOmoz beginner's guide

The old version is a good thing to have when you are only starting but if you are serious about learning SEO, you’d better search for Rand’s updates he’s been posting for a year now (not sure if he has compiled them in one guide yet).

Anyway, Google will help collect the pieces: [ “Rewriting the Beginner’s Guide”]

2. SEObook Glossary

SEObook seo glossary

Of all SEO glossaries out there, this one is the most complete. Besides, it contains really clear definitions and good selection of terms.

3. Google for Beginners:

Hobo Google for beginners

Hobo Google for beginners is the newly published free eBook by our good UK SEO buddy Shaun Anderson. It is definitely not for beginners only, so I recommend everyone checking it out.

4. Simplifying SEO

SEO simplify

Simplify, Simplify, Simplify: this short article by Eric Enge will tune you to the right attitude which is really essential when starting: the simpler, the better:

5. SEO Cheat Sheet

SEO cheat sheet

That’s the only purely SEO cheat sheet comprising all SEO essentials:

  • Important SEO HTML tags;
  • Search engine indexing limits (common indexing limits imposed by search engines on sites that don’t hold a lot of authority);
  • Recommended title tag syntax, etc.

6. SEO Tools

SEO tools

The best way to learn something is to start acting: use the seo tools for additional research and insight.


seo faq

Jill is great at answering basic SEO questions combining straightforward attitude with humor.

8. SEO Checklist

SEO checklist

This article by Matt McGee lists all fundamental SEO steps followed by a short concise explanations – a good list to have by hand.

9. The SEO Pyramid

SEO pyramid

That’s a video guide helping you to get the whole picture: what, how, when…

10. SEO in Action

seo in action

An award-winning actionable guide by Gyutae Park details the whole SEO process: from choosing a niche to promoting the site.

11. Other SEO Learning Resources

[Updating from Tweets and email messages]

Ann Smarty

Ann Smarty

Brand amd Community Manager at Internet Marketing Ninjas
Ann Smarty is the blogger and community manager at Internet Marketing Ninjas. Ann's expertise in blogging and tools serve as a base for her writing,... Read Full Bio
Ann Smarty
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  • Tag44

    Thanks Ann for all the info and for sharing all the links of initial SEO start.

  • Kip

    Resource suggestion:
    Link Building Best Practices with Eric Ward

  • Hobo

    Hey Ann thanks for the links – it’s in great company, I’ve learned something from every other resource listed! Frankly it’s an honour to see it listed with these other great sites / writers.


    PS – We have a starter course online (instead of the PDF) which might be easier to digest for complete newbies πŸ™‚

    It can be found here

  • marty

    great list Ann, much appreciated, keep up the great work
    .-= marty´s last blog ..Virgin slashes 50Mb cost Trials 10Mb upstream =-.

  • Dan Perry

    I always share the 7-minute SEO Guide. Easy to read and lots of good info that’s easily digestible.
    .-= Dan Perry´s last blog ..Twitter Tip – Saving Links for Later =-.

  • Fili

    Great list! Glad to see so many resources out there for beginning webmasters.

    Hereby I would like to add one more resource: the official Google SEO Starters Guide (available in 40 languages): πŸ˜‰

  • MacGizmoGuy

    Ann, You are to be commended for adding the ‘grain of salt’. For all of us who dive beyond the basics – one quickly enters the world of SEO/SEM postulation, pontification, theorum — to outright EXISTENTIALISM in the pursuit of Search Engine Love. Your tempered view always helps keep me in check.

  • Tom Demers

    Very nice list; the SEO Book training program is an amazing way to learn about SEO, IMHO.

    The Moz beginners guide is also a really thorough, easy to understand resource for beginners.

    I also really like David Harry’s stuff, and he has an SEO Handbook available:

    Anyway nice list!

    .-= Tom Demers´s last blog ..Google PageRank Update: July, 29, 2009 =-.

  • Karl Kleinbach

    Excellent list, and have used most of them to great benefit. Have to add one book, “Search Engine Optimization: Your Visual Blueprint for Effective Internet Marketing”. Best I’ve read so far for clarity, approachability, and breadth.

  • jackmo

    fyi your site looks like sh!t on chrome

  • Jamie Low

    For your consideration: πŸ˜‰

    We’ve recently launched a new SEO visibility monitoring service at; it tracks and reports your (and your competitors) keywords, backlinks, PageRank, and other data to calculate a standardized visibility score. It provides a peak into how (and why) your site stacks up to your competitors in each of the major search engines.

  • Andrew Koblick

    This is a great list but seems to omit a “In the Trenches” resource and that is StomperNet.
    I am not a reseller of StomperNet but I have been through the comprahensive course. Check it out.
    .-= Andrew Koblick´s last blog ..Picking a Product to Sell =-.

  • Neyne

    No such list is complete without Brett’s epic post on WMW from 2002 (!) Succesfull Site in 12 months with Google alone
    .-= Neyne´s last blog ..Google Ranking and CTR – how clicks distribute over different rankings on Google =-.

  • Hunter Boyle

    Great list, Ann. These are very good places to start with SEO. Thanks for pulling them together and posting — you’ve made it nice and easy to retweet, and add to our weekly blog post roundup. Cheers.

    .-= Hunter Boyle´s last blog ..Marketing tips and tricks: 5 posts packed with ideas =-.

  • Nick Stamoulis

    Great list, here are 2 more resources that I provide:

    Search Engine Optimization Journal:

    Brick Marketing SEO Newsletter:

    Hope this helps! Thanks!

  • Terry Harmon

    I think all people new to SEO should check out the SEO Bible by Jerri Ledford. It’s a great book with a lot of basic information and helps people new to the field learn about basic terminology and practices.

  • Scott Salwolke

    Excellent post. I was familiar with most of these, but had either forgotten them or failed to bookmark the sites. Thanks for putting them all together on one page I can bookmark and refer back to.

  • Bennie Stark


    Your posts is such a kick ass smart start, not even for SEO begginers but also for Pro’s.

    Thanks for sharing all of these guidelines with us.

    Keep them coming.

  • Kruse Internet Services

    Newbies to SEO should maybe Google for SEO Tutorial as anything there or thereabouts could have some merit.


  • Vikas Shukla

    Referencedesigner blogs have a number of good SEO articles – all for free

    Search for referencedesigner blogs


    It is hard to point them a single source when friends ask about SEO. This article will make it easy for me now.

  • Noah

    Keyword research and targetting should be below the content on that pyramid. How else are you gonna know what to create content about???

    Other than that, though, very nice list of resources. πŸ™‚

  • Darryl Taylor

    Nice collation of useful information there, these are the kind of posts that can be referred back to and even handed to friends who wish to start off in SEO, it would give them a great grounding!

  • Roger Ewing

    This article comes at just the right time. I am launching an initiative in my real estate company around community blog sites. Getting great content is the first challenge, strong SEO is the second.
    I am thinking the two go hand-in- hand.

  • Craig Maxwell

    I recommend Justin Brooke’s little SEO book called “SEO LIES” very thorough and simple to follow.

  • Mike S

    Great List!

    Many of these I have never heard of before.

  • evinco

    #5 Cheat sheet & #8 check list are really useful.