Lesson 1: Introduction (Free Preview)

Lesson 1: Introduction (Free Preview)

This is a preview lesson. Please purchase the course before starting the lesson.

Welcome to iMod Education and congratulations on taking the plunge into the wonderful world of Search Engine Optimisation!

In our first lesson and free preview, you will get a look at who we are (and why you should listen to us) and what’s in store for you as a student of iMod Education.


Who Are We?

First things first, let’s get the formalities out of the way and introduce ourselves. We are iMod Digital, the crew behind the iMod Education platform. We are an experienced team of search engine experts that has provided services to the likes of Foschini, Tsogo Sun Hotels, Gary Kirsten, Takealot, Bidvest and a number of other wonderful companies, both local and International. We’ve been doing this for well over a decade and through the years we’ve crafted highly successful campaigns, so we know what works and what doesn’t. It’s this gold mine of practical experience that we want to share and educate you with so that you can optimise a website and feel confident in doing so.

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What Is SEO?

Before we explore what SEO is, the most important thing to remember is that as long as search engines exist, so will the requirement for SEO in some form. There will always be a need to get a website ahead of another website and this is not going to change for a very long time. Google is a near $400 billion company and they are hardly going to disappear any time soon!

By definition, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s unpaid results – often referred to as “natural”, “organic” or “earned” results and has been around for nearly 2 decades.

That’s quite a mouthful isn’t it? Simplified, SEO is the practice of getting people to your website from search engines without paying for their advertising (known as Google AdWords / PPC).

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The better the visibility your website has within a search engine, the more potential there is to get people to your website. The more traffic (people) you get, the more business you potentially generate – the important part is that getting traffic to your website is not enough, you want people who are interested in your website and this kicks off everything that is SEO.

During the course, we’ll present you with more videos like this. These videos will provide you with deeper insight and should be watched.

Here is a great video that simplifies what SEO is:


Why the iMod Education SEO course is unique?

At iMod Education, we focus on teaching you real skills that you can apply. While the vast majority of other online courses are incredibly theoretical, we have taken a different approach. Throughout the course we will support all theory with examples and practicals where you can see your learning come to life and get real feedback from the experts to aid your progression.

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Here’s why the course works:

  • Practical learning where we show you the tools we work with daily
  • Feedback from the SEO experts on your assignments
  • Our material is alive and constantly updated as the industry changes
  • The course is written by practising SEO’s, not educators
  • You are not only a student, but a member of an active community
  • You implement your skills right away

SEO is not about theory; it is all about practical implementation and results only come from practice and application. We want to teach you SEO from an up-to-date and x stand-point, where we are more about results than definitions, with the objective being by the end of this course we want you to feel that you’re ready to use the tools rather than knowing what the tools can do. Let’s get our hands dirty, get more organic traffic and make some money!


ie-lesson-1-image-3What you get:

When you sign up for our course, you will gain lifetime access to the course material, meaning that as it is updated, you will be too. As a student of iMod Education, you will also become part of our exclusive community of like-minded people where you are free to engage with us and other students outside of the iMod Education platform in a no-fuss social environment. The learning doesn’t stop when the course is over. We will also keep you updated with all our latest blog posts to keep you motivated and informed of what’s happening in the industry.


How the course will be run:

In this course we’re going to teach you a lot, we’re going to share with you how we go about optimising a website, the tools we use, the resources we learn from, who to follow on Twitter and a long list of other valuable items that will put you in a position to greater understand what SEO is, how you would go about getting started and how to decide on a strategy to get results! Because let’s face it, talk is cheap – unless you’re dealing with a lawyer.

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Below is an outline of our structure:

  • Theory
  • Our secrets, tips & tools
  • Practical Examples
  • Additional Resources
  • Quizzes &Practical Tests

At the bottom of every lesson, we’ll share some valuable resources, we encourage you to read these resources and experiment. Truly successful SEO’s spend hours reading and experimenting – by just stepping over these resources you’ll be cutting your experience short. We’ll be updating these resources on a regular basis to ensure that you’re getting the latest information. We would like to encourage you to do your own additional research if at any point you feel that it is necessary or if you are faced with a completely unfamiliar topic, after all, Google is our friend. Not only will this answer some queries you may have, this will improve your own resourcefulness and you may even come across some great tools yourself.

As you progress through the course you’ll be met with multiple choice questions which require correct answers in order to proceed to the next lesson. These questions test the basics and ensure that you’ve understood the lesson at hand. In and among these multiple choice questions will be practicals, which you’ll have to complete and submit. One of our practising search engine experts will mark the practical and present you with your marks and feedback. The combination of multiple choice questions, practical exams and the final exam will determine whether you have achieved a pass for the course.


Meet our cat!

Here at iMod Education, we’ve always wanted to have a mascot, so we adopted Pixel to live here on our website. He’s here to help you out, take the edge off, and knock things over. When he’s napping, the iMod Education team will be here to help you with any queries and questions you may have.Pixel Introduction

 


Important SEO statistics:

Here are several really important statistics to keep in mind which will also motivate you to realise just how important SEO is.
SEO Statistics


So how do you achieve success?

A few paragraphs above we mentioned, “the important part is that getting traffic to your website is not enough, you want people who are interested in your website” – what we’re talking about here is high quality traffic. High quality traffic comes from high quality content that is produced on an authoritative website. Think of it like this, if you produce a really interesting piece of content and publish it on the Internet, the more interesting it is the more people will want to read it. If lots of people want to read it, Google will recognise this and in turn Google will reward you – this is a very crude way to explain it but it drills the point home.

Knowing some of the techniques that are no longer valuable, what are the techniques that are valuable? Don’t worry if you don’t know what these techniques are, we just want you to become familiar with the terms for when we cover them in depth in further lessons.

SEO Success

  • Quality Content Creation
  • On-Site Optimisation
  • User Experience and Design
  • Load Speeds
  • Link Acquisition
  • Keyword Research & Targeting
  • Internal Linking
  • Increasing Engagement and Conversions
  • Mobile Optimisation
  • Local SEO

 

 

Beware! Here’s what not to do:

To understand what SEO is, we also need to understand what to avoid. SEO is a fluid industry with many different techniques that come and go as different methods are discovered to work, and then often get abused by black hat spammers. The term “black hat” refers to someone who is using SEO techniques that are against Google’s Terms of Service and/or abuse search engine algorithms. These techniques need to be avoided and can land up doing more damage than good if you are not careful nor abreast of the latest requirements. The problem is that thousands of resources online still talk about the old techniques and it is really important that we address them upfront so that we can avoid them at all costs.

Black Hat SEO

  • Keyword stuffing and spoofing – Keyword stuffing was used in the past to force the same keywords all over a website to try and rank higher. It is now seen as an unethical technique that is against Google’s Terms of Service and can get your website banned from search engines. Spoofing is a technique of hiding keywords on a website so that user’s don’t see them, but search engines do. Spoofing is just as frowned upon as stuffing. If your website gets banned from search engines, it means that it will not appear anywhere anymore!
  • Duplicated websites across multiple domains – One might think that one way to dominate the results in a search engine search is to register hundreds of domain names and place the same website/content on all of them. This is one of the most frowned upon approaches by search engines and will ultimately damage your visibility considerably – have unique content.
  • Content spinning and automatic content generation – Many moons ago people used to write articles with links back to their website and then get them published on multiple websites in order to get lots of links back to where the article was originally published. Just like duplicated websites, duplication of any form is no longer a technique worthy of a search ranking. Furthermore, generating links in this manner will more than likely result in your website being penalised. If this happens, the process of getting your website back into the search engines is a painstakingly long and expensive one!
  • Cloaking – Cloaking is a black hat SEO technique where people would present the content of a website differently to the user and the search engine.
  • Link buying and trading – Buying links on other websites to point back to your website was a technique that worked for many years and has now become a huge problem for SEOs. Search engines have caught onto this technique and anyone caught buying links could receive a rude awakening when their website completely vanishes due to the search engine penalising them.

Although these are all techniques that once upon a time had a place in SEO, they no longer do and if Google, for example, finds you performing these techniques you stand the chance of getting penalised. We’ll cover penalisation in future lessons, but right now it’s just important to understand that there are techniques that are no longer viable at all and you need to be careful about where you get your information from. Google continually changes the way it handles techniques and it’s for this very reason that SEO cannot be theoretical and outdated – in an ever changing world we have to be street smart. Google handles this through things called algorithm updates and although we’ll cover this in another lesson, the takeaway is that Google is ever changing and we need to understand what Google wants in order to achieve success. Since there are different types of tactics when it comes to SEO, we would like to encourage you to do some research of your own on the topic to ensure that you understand the difference between black hat SEO, white hat SEO as well as the sneaky middleman, gray hat SEO.


Let’s make this official!

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In this course we’re going to teach you a lot, we’re going to share with you how we go about optimising a website, the tools we use, the resources we learn from, who to follow on Twitter and a long list of other valuable items that will put you in a position to greater understand what SEO is, how you would go about getting started and how to decide on a strategy to get results! Because let’s face it, talk is cheap – unless you’re dealing with a lawyer.

As we’ve mentioned, this course is here to teach you what to do. At the bottom of every lesson, we’ll share some valuable resources, we encourage you to read these resources and experiment. Truly successful SEO’s spend hours reading and experimenting – by just stepping over these resources you’ll be cutting your experience short. We’ll be updating these resources on a regular basis to ensure that you’re getting the latest information. We would like to encourage you to do your own additional research if at any point you feel that it is necessary or if you are faced with a completely unfamiliar topic, after all, Google is our friend. Not only will this answer some queries you may have, this will improve your own resourcefulness and you may even come across some great tools yourself.

As you progress through the course you’ll be met with multiple choice questions which require correct answers in order to proceed to the next lesson. These questions test the basics and ensure that you’ve understood the lesson at hand. In and among these multiple choice questions will be practicals, which you’ll have to complete and submit. One of our practising search engine experts will mark the practical and present you with a part. The combination of multiple choice questions, practical exams and the final exam will determine whether you have achieved a pass for the course.

Below you’ll see the button to take the first quiz, we’ve made the first one easy!


Are you ready?

If you have signed up and joined the iMod Education family, welcome and thank you! If you are viewing this lesson as a guest, we invite you on-board to come and enjoy the course with us and spruce up your knowledge, skills and gain an edge over the rest by being able to actually implement SEO instead of only knowing the lingo.

If you’re a student, click the button below to move on to your first quiz (we made the first one easy, promise).

 


In each lesson we’ll share some resources with you. These resources are a gold mine, make use of them!

Useful Resources

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