Google has overhauled its official SEO Starter Guide for the first time in over 7 years with the release of a new, web-based starter guide.
Google is removing the old starter guide, as well as depreciating the Webmaster Academy which had overlapping content.
Google’s new SEO Starter Guide builds off both of the previously available resources. The updated guide also includes new sections emphasizing the need for search engine optimization, how to add structured data markup, and tips for mobile-friendly websites.
Technical SEO is also incredibly important Technical SEO refers to the process of optimizing a website to meet the technical requirements of modern search engines, such as Google. Achieving great technical SEO allows a website to achieve better organic rankings in search engines. These optimizations are crucial because, even with great content, a poor technical SEO score can prevent a site from ranking in search engines, reducing its visibility to potential customers. There are many factors that contribute to a great (or poor) technical SEO score, but the most significant item to focus on is page speed and load times, which have a significant impact on a site’s performance. Our secondary goal was to ensure that our sitemap, robots.txt configuration, internationalization, and meta tags were all configured correctly, enabling search engines to crawl our pages.
Google recommends its starter guide to anyone who owns, manages, monetizes, or promotes online content via Google Search. Google’s revamped guide does not reveal any previously unknown secrets of how its algorithms work, although it does serve as a nice primer for beginners.
Hiring an SEO Expert
Google’s new SEO Starter Guide does not shy away from telling the reader that it may be worthwhile to hire an SEO professional. In fact, this recommendation is highlighted in the very first chapter of the guide!
Google briefly details the type of services an SEO can provide, and links to further resources such as Help Center articles explaining how to hire an SEO. When is the best time to hire an SEO? The earlier the better, Google says, as this will help ensure a site is search engine friendly from the ground up.
As you can imagine, since Google’s SEO Starter Guide hasn’t been updated in 7 years, a lot has changed when it comes to SEO for the mobile web.
Google’s previous guide focused on SEO best practices for websites with separate mobile pages, which was the more common practice at the time.
The new guide has been updated to reflect the current state of the mobile web, featuring best practices for creating mobile-friendly websites that can be accessed by all devices.
Linking Out to Other Sites
Google’s new SEO Starter Guide does a better job of advising site owners to be careful about who they link out to.
“Be careful who you link to. You can confer some of your site’s reputation to another site when your site links to it.”
The new guide goes over some of the most common ways people can take advantage of another site’s reputation— such as adding links in comments— and how they can be combated with the “nofollow” attribute.
These are just a few examples of what’s been added to Google’s new SEO Starter Guide. The new guide is currently available in nine languages, with sixteen more to be added “very soon.”