Non-marketers – here’s how you can build your SEO skills
Search engine optimisation (SEO) skills are incredibly useful to know whether you’re a marketer, a content writer or an entrepreneur.
For the uninitiated, SEO is “the practice of increasing both the quality and quantity of website traffic, as well as exposure to your brand, through non-paid (also known as ‘organic’) search engine results.”
Moz explains it further by saying that SEO is about understanding what people are searching for online, the answers they are seeking, the words they’re using, and the type of content they wish to consume. Understanding this allows you to connect to the people who are searching online for the solutions you offer.
For some, SEO can be a complex topic to grasp; it doesn’t help that its rules are constantly changing, but that doesn’t take away its significance.
You can easily pay money to increase visits to your site via Pay Per Click (PPC) (a form of paid digital marketing where advertisers pay a fee each time their ad is clicked), but your visibility tends to disappear once the money stops. Which is why utilising SEO improves the staying power of your content or website.
Applying just a small amount of SEO practice can make a huge difference to your business or work. If you’re on a tight budget, for instance, you can use SEO to your advantage to help make your website more visible to potential customers.
Build your SEO skills
If you want to gain more familiarity with how SEO works, short courses or microcredentials can be a good way for an introduction. If you wish to develop more in-depth skills, you can opt for more advanced courses to gain deeper knowledge in the area.
Coursera, for instance, offers Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Specialization, a beginner-level course that will teach candidates the theory behind Google search and other search engine algorithms.
Students will also build practical, real-world skills that they can apply to a career in digital marketing or online content development, including on-page and off-page optimisation, optimising for local and international audiences, conducting search-focused website audits, and aligning SEO with overall business strategies.
Many universities also offer SEO-related courses, some of which have no admission requirements.
University of California Irvine’s Division of Continuing Education’s SEO course helps students understand how search engines such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, and Baidu rank websites; develop the skills required to optimise website structure to maximise rankings, site visits, and sales; effectively utilise Google Analytics and learn the latest SEO tools and techniques, to name a few.
York University offers a Post-Graduate Certificate in Digital & Content Marketing, which also touches on the topic of SEO.
So whether you’re looking to develop skills that would help you work remotely, or if you’re eager to learn a new skill to complement your current skill set, building your SEO skills can be incredibly useful in an era where it’s never been more important for you and your business to have an online presence.