There are a few books and courses online that are free and really helpful when it comes to learning some of the things that will make you a better SEO. Knowledge can make a difference, and having an idea of how search engines work can possibly give you a competitive advantage over others who haven’t had a chance to learn about such resources. I’ve come across a few books that are online and free, and worth spending time with, and thought it might not be a bad idea to share them.
The first two volumes I found are ones that focus on one of the important ways that search engines understand the content of web pages, rating them based upon information retrieval scores. Having an idea of how a search engine might rank a page, based on more than just something of an understanding of how PageRank works can be really helpful.
Introduction to Information Retrieval by Christopher D. Manning, Prabhakar Raghavan and Hinrich Schütze
Modern Information Retrieval by Ricardo Baeza-Yates and Berthier Ribeiro-Neto
In the last couple of years, we have seen significant changes to how search results look at search engines. It doesn’t include knowledge panels or featured snippets or structured snippets or sitelinks, but this book does leave lots to think about when it comes to how search results are organized:
Search User Interfaces by Marti Hearst
Having a sense of how HTML and CSS and java script works can be helpful to anyone involved in SEO. This book covers the latest version of HTML which hasn’t been adopted everywhere on the Web yet, but is still worth digging into:
Dive into HTML5 by Mark Pilgrim
Online Courses and Presentations
Google has been going through a number of transformations in the past 5 years or so, and Andrew Hogue was involved in many of the changes that took place. His presentation on them is insightful:
The Structured Search Engine by Andrew Hogue:
Last September, Jeff Dean introduced us to a Google that was going to be incorporating Machine Learning into what they do – hearing some of the details behind this movement is like peeking behind the curtain:
Jeff Dean Talks Google Brain and Brain Residency:
These tutorials were pointed out to me on Twitter a couple of days ago. I started watching them, and decided quickly that they were worth sharing: