You can learn how to do Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, for free. All you need are solid resources written or created by SEO experts.
We’ve compiled an up-to-date list of the 28 best SEO blogs, courses, videos, podcasts, conferences, and tools to get you started.
28 Free Ways To Learn SEO
The Best SEO Guides and News Sites
Is there a better place to start than Google’s own SEO Getting Started Guide? While search engines and SEOs tend to have different goals in mind, it’s definitely worth listening to what Google has to say about ranking sites.
Moz creates useful tools for SEO and web marketers. Its Beginner’s Guide to SEO is one of the most trusted pieces of content on the subject and a must-read for beginners, and it was recently updated in March 2021.
3. Google (Search)
New features are being created all the time and the best way to find them is through a search engine like Google. SEOs tend to focus almost exclusively on Google as the market leader, but don’t forget about Bing and other competitors.
Designed as a companion piece to the periodic table of search factors, the Search Engine Land SEO Guide is a nine-step tutorial.
This SEO guide explains how you can use the SERPStat tool to improve your website’s SEO.
The 10 Very Best SEO Blogs
6. Backlinko (Brian Dean)
Described (by his friends) as “a unicorn among a sea of donkeys”, Brian Dean is a superstar in the world of SEO. Anyone who wants to learn more about SEO should read his blog on the skyscraper technique, a method of building backlinks, at an absolute minimum.
While you’re on Backlinko, check out its SEO Guide. This guide has two distinct features: 1) it is very up-to-date with 2021 best practices, and 2) it is focused on helping you learn as quickly as possible.
7. Watch Alexis Sander’s Class: “Developing Search Strategies”
This class, hosted on Skillshare, teaches students how to create and implement organic search strategies.
8. Quick Sprout (Neil Patel)
Another famous figure in the search world, Neil Patel, is someone you can’t get very far within SEO without listening to him. Their free keyword research tool, Ubersuggest, is a good quick and dirty alternative to some of the more complex (and paid) tools out there.
This advanced SEO guide covers some points not covered in other guides, such as search verticals.
10. Yoast SEO Blog
This blog is brought to you by Yoast, the person behind the ubiquitous WordPress website SEO plugin. To this day, I recommend that new SEOs read Yoast blogs about page titles and meta descriptions, which are essential for a successful Google ranking and to ensure organic traffic.
Among other innovations, Copyblogger founder Brian Clark coined the term “foundational content” in blogging and search marketing. This is the first resource on the list that considers SEO from a copyright standpoint, and the site includes some great introductions to copyright.
The Best Free Tools for Learning SEO
There is no substitute for going out and trying to do SEO yourself, and you really can’t do SEO without your own website. WordPress allows you to quickly create your own website and start playing with some of the techniques you have learned so far.
13. Google Analytics
After creating a website, it’s time to dive into the data using Google Analytics. Google Analytics is possibly the best web marketing tool to measure the success of your campaigns.
Use Google Analytics to review your traffic sources, drill down into your user demographics, and more. You can then use this valuable data to improve the performance of your website.
According to the Google website, “Google Search Console helps you monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot your site’s presence in Google search results.” Everyone who wants to learn SEO should take a look at a Google Search Console account and understand how to submit pages to Google and review any warnings, at a minimum.
Are you intimidated by Google Analytics? You’d have to be superhuman not be! But fear not: Analytics Academy is an extensive online course that explains how you can get the most out of this powerful tool. You will still get a grade after completing all the modules!
An important module of Analytics Academy, Google Tag Manager Fundamentals teaches you how to use Google Tag Manager, a tool that allows you to track almost everything on your site without overloading it with additional code.
The Best Videos for Learning about SEO
I’m surprised more people aren’t praising Google’s webmaster YouTube channel. These totally free videos, which include some of the most technical SEO videos I’ve ever seen, are recorded by Google’s own team of webmasters.
Google’s John Mueller also hosts Hangouts for webmasters in English and German, where webmasters from around the world talk to Google about issues with their sites live on Google Hangouts.
Surprisingly, there are webmaster Hangouts in many different languages and time zones, so there is a good chance that you will find something relevant to you, anywhere in the world.
This new video series from SEO technical mentor Aleyda Solis is worth watching! Aleyda’s channel combines instructional dives in technical SEO with interviews with SEO professionals.
The fast-talking and foul-mouthed Greg Gifford is one of my favorite SEO speakers and I make sure I never miss his lectures when he’s at BrightonSEO. His weekly two-minute videos tackle a particular SEO topic, with a particular focus on local SEO.
Whiteboard Friday is the 800 pound gorilla of SEO videos. Although founder Rand Fishkin has moved to new pastures, the Moz team still creates or provides a fifteen-minute video each week. The videos range from beginner-friendly to seemingly advanced.
The Best Places To Learn SEO in Person
21. BrightonSEO (FREE tickets!)
Normally “free” and “conference” don’t match, but BrightonSEO distributes thousands of free tickets by voting every six months. The conference, which takes place twice a year in Brighton, England, is arguably one of the largest SEO conferences in the world, with over 4,000 participants and some of the most innovative speakers in the industry.
There are hundreds of groups dedicated to SEO on MeetUp, a social media platform designed to facilitate face-to-face meetings. If you live in a large city, there is a reasonable chance that there is already one near you. If not? Why not be the right person to start one?
I recently started attending the Content Club in Brighton, where we discussed content marketing in a coworking space or, better yet, in a pub.
Social Media Accounts to Follow to Learn About SEO
23. Quora SEO
Over 94,000 SEO questions have been submitted to Quora – this is a frighteningly large data dump. If you add related topics, including SEO tools, search engines, and web marketing, chances are any SEO questions you have probably already been asked somewhere in this huge forum.
With 90,000 subscribers, the SEO community on Reddit actively discusses everything related to research, from algorithm updates to the fine line between black and white hat practices.
John Mueller is a webmaster trend analyst at Google and a leading Google spokesperson on SEO issues. It’s worth following on Twitter and through Google’s Webmaster Hangouts.
Free SEO Courses with Certificatio
26. HubSpot Academy
HubSpot Academy contains a more content-oriented set of courses, including videos on inbound marketing, email marketing, and even Instagram marketing. While I love and appreciate the content that the HubSpot team has created, I highly recommend that you view this content at 1.5x speed; You’ll see what I mean after your first module!
27. Udemy SEO
One of the kings of online courses, Udemy has a substantial library of free SEO courses. To find them, visit the Udemy website and filter by price (selecting free).
Codecademy isn’t necessarily an SEO-focused site, but not a week goes by without me using some (extremely basic) HTML or CSS that I learned in one of their free courses. Highly recommended.
There are so many great places you can learn SEO yourself, including many that are not on this list.
Start learning SEO today and you will also know how to increase organic traffic to your website or online business.