I’m continually astounded by the basic questions people ask me about search engine optimization (SEO) given the amount of ink that’s been spent explaining it. And, I continue to be surprised by how much bad information is out there.

That’s the problem in a nutshell, I think. Information overload and too many companies (or  so-called experts) making claims they can’t deliver. Who do you believe? You’re a small business owner. You don’t have time to figure all this stuff out, and it’s much too confusing anyway.

Google’s SEO Starter Guide

I have two trusted resources for you that will explain SEO basics. Neither will make your eyes glaze over and both are pretty informative.

1. Google’s Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide — This 30-page guide gives you a great overview of SEO basics. The reason I recommend this guide is because despite all the changes Google has made, these basics have not changed. It’s easy to read and best of all, it’s easy to understand and implement the ideas. The Guide is free — simply click the link.

2. The Periodic Table of SEO Ranking Factors — Developed by Search Engine Land, this table shows you the important “on page” ranking factors that you can control, such as quality content that engages people, keywords, and optimized title tags. You’ll also find SEO violations, such as link spam and “thin” content. You can also read their Guide to SEO that explains the table.

The best shield against bad advice is to get your “juice” from the source. Follow Google’s Webmaster Central Blog for updates as well as Search Engine Land.

Do you have a trusted source when it comes to SEO, social media or marketing? Feel free to post it here.