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  • Writer's pictureMordy Oberstein

How to Learn SEO

Darwin Santos joins the SEO Rant Podcast to talk about SEO knowledge and what he calls "standing on the shoulders of giants":

  • The impact of individual SEOs on the career paths of new search marketers

  • Why remembering we all learned SEO from someone else is vital

  • Realizing SEO knowledge is a give and take scenario

We all take things for granted. Such is life. This is why every once in a while it's important to get some perspective. There are certain things in the world of SEO that are givens. There are certain ideas and practices that are no-brainers at this point. But if we stop and think for a second we'll quickly realize that these things are only obvious because of the ingenuity and hard work of other SEOs. And while we might have our own novel ideas, they're very often built on the foundation of someone else's ingenuity.

In this episode, Darwin and I talk about the continual building of SEO knowledge and the appreciation of those who made this possible for us.

Here's a summary of what we talked about.

SEO Rant Podcast Banner with Darwin Santos


Building SEO Knowledge by Learning From Others

Knowledge is a continuous conversation. Where one generation leaves off, the next begins. The same is true for SEO. Ideas we take for granted now are only "givens" because someone who came before us worked hard to be innovative. Our SEO knowledge piggy-backs on the ideas of those who came into SEO before we did.

SEO Knowledge-Sharing And Learning SEO

One of the unique things about SEO is that the community surrounding it is built on knowledge sharing (although one might argue there is less knowledge sharing these days). Most SEOs realize this. However, a point this often gets taken for granted.

To that, we often don't realize the potential impact we as individuals can have on other SEOs.

There are certain members of the SEO community who are both so brilliant and giving that they leave a lasting impact on the community. They inspire people to learn more about SEO and to do better SEO. The late great Hamlet Batista is a clear example of this. He inspired an entire community of SEOs to learn more about Python and beyond.

However, anyone can have a lasting impact on the career of another SEO. It doesn't have to be something grandiose. A simple gesture or a small piece of advice can have a lasting impact.

The point is, while we often look at the SEO community as a whole and the immense amount of knowledge being shared it pays to understand the role we as individuals play. As we share ideas and insights it can inspire others to continue our work and extend those ideas to all new places.

How We All Got Started Learning SEO

While it might be hard on our egos, remembering that we all learned SEO from someone is such an important point. No one was born knowing SEO (well, maybe John Mueller was). SEO is a slow learn. It's not like you can plug yourself into the Matrix and come out knowing some SEO kung fu. Remembering the folks who helped us learn SEO is a vital part of continuing the great SEO conversation in the sky. It keeps us humble and appreciative which in turn helps us pass on our knowledge to the next generation of SEOs.

That's why it's so bothersome to see new SEOs fighting with the old SEOs and old SEOs fighting with the new SEOs. A breakdown in the cycle between the previous generation of knowledge sharers and the incoming generation is detrimental to the continuation of said knowledge. That applies to any knowledge community, SEO included.

For the record, SEO vets can certainly stand on the shoulders of the next generation of SEOs and the innovation they produce. It's a give-and-take relationship.


For more of the SEO Rant Podcast check out our previous episode on how education impacts search behavior.

Learn more about SEO Rant's host, Mordy Oberstein.


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