The SEO Tutorial That Even a Complete Beginner Would Understand

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can be exciting and tricky at the same time. If you want to understand SEO completely, this is the ONLY practical guide you should read. In just 7 minutes, we’ll help you understand the basics of SEO, get you excited to learn even more and position yourself to become a pro. While social media provides immediate visibility, SEO is the backbone for sustained organic growth and delivers lasting results with great ROI.

It positions your business as an authority, ensuring it's discovered by users actively seeking your products or services. 

What is SEO?

SEO, or Search Engine Optimization is the step you take to optimize your website and its pages to rank higher in organic search engine results. The goal is to increase visibility, making it easier for people to find specific pages (e.g., services or a tutorial page) on your website when searching for relevant topics. 

SEO involves various strategies like keyword optimization, creating quality content, and building backlinks, ultimately enhancing your site's performance in search engine rankings.

Understanding SEO: A Beginner's Guide

The process of search engine optimization can be summarized in 3 important aspects:

  • On-Page SEO
  • Off-Page SEO
  • Technical SEO 

The table below highlights the key differences between these aspects of SEO


Content and structure on your website

External factors impacting your site’s reputation

Backend optimization of the website


Keyword optimization, content quality

Backlinks, social signals

Site speed, mobile-friendliness, schema markup


Enhance user experience and relevance

Increase authority and credibility

Improves website structure and crawlability

Impact on Ranking

Directly influences individual pages

Boosts overall site authority

Enhances overall website performance


CMS, keyword tools

Link-building tools, social media platforms

Crawlers, site audit tools, web analytics

Mastering SEO Basics: Your Essential Foundation

Mastering SEO basics is like giving your website an exclusive ticket to the digital party. It's not just about having a great website; it's about ensuring everyone notices it. 

SEO speaks the secret language of search engines (i.e., answering a specific question and making it easier to consume), making your site not only visually appealing but also easily understandable to platforms like Google. 

Keyword Research: Your Key to SEO Success

Search engines such as Google and Bing rank web pages based on the keywords they’re targeting. Keywords are the secret sauce of SEO. They are the words people type into search engines to find what they need. For example: online business ideas:

Use Google Keyword Planner to find the right keywords for your business. Focus on keywords that your potential audience is likely to use. 

For example, if you print T-shirts and you take orders at your online store, input it into the search bar to see other related keywords or variations of your primary keyword. 

Click on the “Get results” button:

Here are some keywords you could target in your pages to potentially rank on Google organic results:

Armed with these keywords, you’re now ready to ‘creatively’ use each or all of them on your content page, creating a symphony that search engines can't resist. The goal, ultimately, is to address the ‘search intent’ of the keyword. 

In other words, when people search for “T-shirt printing near me,” are they looking for free information, do they want to visit your office, or do they want to order prints online? Of course, whenever you see a keyword with the ‘near me’ suffix, the intent is clear. 

People want to visit your office or at least call your phone line to either place an order or ask a question about pricing.

The Power of Backlinks 

Link building and marketing is what off-page SEO is all about. It’s the practice of getting backlinks. Backlinks are those virtual nods of approval from other websites. A link from another website to yours, which is an important Google ranking factor (about 15%).

If you want your website and its pages to rise to the top of organic search results, you need trusted, natural, and relevant links from websites; preferably in your industry. So if you have a SaaS tool for business owners, then focus on getting links from business-related websites. These links will carry a ton of link juice (or value).

Let’s dive into the 5 most effective link-building strategies that a beginner can easily implement:

1. Creating Helpful and Engaging Content: 

Building a robust backlink strategy starts with crafting content that resonates. Think of your content as a beacon; when it's informative, engaging, and addresses your audience's pain points, other websites naturally want to cite it with a link back to your website.

Dive into your niche, identify relevant topics, and create in-depth articles, guides, or infographics that genuinely help your audience. As your content gains recognition, it becomes a magnetic force, pulling in links and elevating your backlink profile.

2. Guest Posting: 

Guest posting is like opening doors to a world of opportunities. It’s simple to implement. Find websites in your industry and contribute valuable content to help their audiences. This is a great way to create a symbiotic relationship. 

In guest posting, you find the right websites that need content, and contact them with well-crafted pitches, to showcase your expertise. When your guest posts are published, not only do you gain exposure, but you also secure valuable backlinks, fostering a mutually beneficial connection.

3. Leverage Social Media to Get Links:

Social media is more than status updates; you can leverage it to build backlinks. Start by engaging with your community, share content, and dive into relevant discussions.  About 246 million people use social media in the United States. If you could reach a tiny fraction of these users, it could translate into links back to your website.

As your social presence grows, you increase your chance of others sharing and linking to your content. Platforms like LinkedIn offer avenues to connect with influencers, forging relationships that could lead to a guest post opportunity, a podcast interview, or a direct link from a journalist or publisher. 

4. Create Captivating Infographics: 

Infographics are the visual storytellers of the digital realm. These are data-driven images that captivate the audience. Beyond videos, images generate the highest ROI, and 47% of marketers leverage images in their marketing strategy.

Use Piktochart or Canva to design visually appealing, shareable infographics related to your industry. Ensure they're not just eye-catching but also packed with valuable insights.  Share these gems on your website and promote them through social channels. 

Many websites and blogs actively seek visually appealing content. When they find your infographic compelling, it becomes a go-to reference, earning your website valuable backlinks.

5. Link Reclamation: 

Link reclamation is an often overlooked yet powerful strategy for building backlinks. It involves identifying and reclaiming broken or unlinked mentions of your brand or content across the web. Start by monitoring brand mentions using social listening tools like Google Alerts or Brand Mention

For example, Zimbelmann mentioned the HootSuite platform in his LinkedIn post, but failed to link to it. Now, this is an opportunity for the HootSuite marketing team to get a backlink by contacting Zim.

When you discover instances where your brand is mentioned but not linked, reach out to the website owner or content creator politely, requesting a link inclusion. Additionally, identify broken backlinks pointing to your site using tools like Broken Link Checker. Reach out to the website owners, suggest the replacement of broken links with relevant, updated content. 

Link reclamation not only recovers lost link opportunities but also strengthens your backlink profile organically.

Navigating SEO Tools: Your Essential Toolkit

Waking up every day to do SEO can be daunting, but with the right tools, it becomes a more manageable and insightful process. Think of the tools below as your ‘personal’ SEO assistants, guiding you through the intricate world of optimization:

1. Google Search Console: 

Google Search Console is an indispensable free tool that acts as a virtual compass, helping you navigate the intricacies of search engine visibility. It not only facilitates the indexing of your website and content but also provides crucial insights into keyword rankings. 

When you know how users discover and interact with your website, you uncover opportunities for improvement, ensuring your content aligns with user intent.

2. Google Analytics: 

Google Analytics lets website owners track their website's performance comprehensively. With this free tool, you can track the main sources of your site visitors, understand which pages are getting the most traffic, and gain insights into user behavior. 

With insights from Google Analytics 4, you can tailor your content strategy to cater to your audience's preferences and optimize your website for enhanced user experiences.

3. Semrush: 

Semrush is a versatile tool that helps you find potential keywords and identify content gaps, inspiring new ideas. This is a paid tool, Google Keyword Planner is a great free alternative. SEMrush acts as a compass, guiding beginners to understand the competitive landscape and refine their strategies for optimal results.

4. BuzzSumo: 

In the realm of link building, BuzzSumo emerges as a beacon. This tool lets you discover share-worthy content. It acts as a catalyst for building backlinks. Use the tool to identify influential content within your niche, analyze what resonates with your audience, and leverage this knowledge for a robust link-building strategy.

5. Link Whisper: 

Navigating the internal structure of your website is made seamless with Link Whisper. As a beginner, building a strong foundation of internal links is crucial, and Link Whisper simplifies this process. This is a paid tool. Enhance the user journey within your site and improve its overall structure for better SEO performance.

Mobile-Friendly SEO: Optimizing for Every Device

Did you know that the majority of your potential customers are on the move, browsing on their smartphones or tablets? Is your website ready to welcome them? Mobile SEO is not just a trend; it's a necessity. Ensure your site is mobile-friendly, offering a seamless experience across all devices. Your users will thank you, and search engines will reward you with higher rankings.

If you’re a WordPress user, then install a mobile-responsive WordPress theme. This should take care of your website -- making sure it displays well on iPhones, Tablets, and every mobile device out there.

Staying Ahead in SEO: Trends and What's Next

Algorithms change, trends evolve, and what works today might not work tomorrow. Embrace a mindset of continuous learning. Here are 5 trends that will propel beginners into the forefront of organic search rankings, driving traffic, and ultimately, boosting revenue.

1. Voice Search Optimization 

Instead of typing queries, users are speaking them. Voice search is no longer a futuristic concept; it's here, and it's changing the SEO game. To ride this wave, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Focus on natural language in your content. 
  • Answer questions concisely, like you're having a conversation with your audience. 

As voice-activated devices become more prevalent, optimizing for voice search ensures your content is in the spotlight.

2. User Experience Takes Center Stage 

User experience (UX) is not just a buzzword; it's a ranking factor. Google loves websites that offer seamless, enjoyable experiences. Ensure your website is easy to navigate, visually appealing, and mobile-friendly. A positive user experience not only satisfies visitors but also signals to search engines that your site is worth recommending.

3. Video Content Dominance 

Video content continues to reign supreme in the digital realm. It's engaging, shareable, and favored by search engines. Incorporate videos into your content strategy; they can be tutorials, product demonstrations, or behind-the-scenes glimpses. YouTube isn't just a video platform; it's the second-largest search engine globally. So create videos to target your audience as they’re searching for the products/services you provide. Leverage the power of video to capture attention, increase dwell time, and enhance your SEO.

4. Featured Snippets 

Ever noticed those concise answers at the top of search results? 

Those are featured snippets, and they're a golden ticket to SEO success. Structure your content in a way that provides clear, concise answers to common questions in your industry. 

When Google sees your content as the go-to source for quick answers, it rewards you with the coveted featured snippet position.  

5. Core Web Vitals 

Google's Core Web Vitals are metrics that measure your website's loading speed, interactivity, and visual stability. Why does this matter? Because users love fast, responsive websites, and so does Google. 

Optimize your website to meet these core vitals, ensuring a lightning-fast and smooth user experience. It not only improves your SEO but also keeps visitors happy and engaged.

Staying ahead in SEO is not just about following trends blindly; it's about adapting and evolving with the digital landscape. Embrace these trends, experiment with your strategy, and watch as your organic search rankings, traffic, and revenue climb to new heights. 


Content is what powers SEO. You need to create the most helpful and engaging articles to win the hearts of Google. Off-page SEO (such as link building) is secondary. For businesses new to digital marketing, investing in SEO could just be the missing puzzle to attracting new customers or clients, and increasing your revenue.

Optimize your website for users and unlock the door to a world where your brand ranks at the top of Google’s organic results. The power of SEO lies in its ability to make your business discoverable to those actively searching for your products or services.