12 Must Read Blog Posts That I Always Refer Back To

I'd like to take a step back for this blog post and highlight some fantastic blog posts that I always find myself referring back to when speaking to clients or working on problems.  There are some in here which are "old" in SEO terms that go back to 2010, but I still refer to them now because they really are that good.

If you haven't read this already, go read them now or bookmark them for future reference.  Also let me know in the comments which posts you'd add to this list!

Keyword Research Using Categories by Richard Baxter

This is a great, step by step post by Rich and is super actionable.  It contains some Excel magic which we all love and lets you play with large datasets.

You can basically go from this -

To this -

Best Social Media Metrics by Avinash Kaushik

I could have put a lot more of Avinash's work on this list, but this one stood out for me and talked about a topic in a very clear and actionable way.  The key thing for me was how Avinash related social media metrics back to more real life metrics that non-SEOs can relate to.

If you follow the steps, you can end up with something like this -

Panda Update Timeline from Search Engine Land

I've referred back to these posts countless times.  This is the latest one I could find and includes details of all confirmed Panda rollouts and updates so far, very handy when checking back over analytics for suspected Panda issues.

Surviving a Site Migration by Richard Baxter

Another entry from Rich that I always refer back to.  In this post Rich clearly explains the steps needed if you are carrying out a site migration for a client and all the important points you need to consider.  Whilst I have my own process for this, I always find myself double checking that I haven't forgotten anything!

Perfecting Keyword Targeting and On-page Optimisation by Rand Fishkin

This is an old post from 2009 but I still love the simplicity of it and the diagram that Rand opens with.  Some of the details of the exact elements and their impact has probably changed over the past two years, but the core principles are the same.  I often use the diagram at the start to explain basic on-page elements of SEO to clients.

The Noob Guide to Online Marketing by Oli Gardner

Seriously, if you haven't read this, go read it now (after you've finished this post of course!).  Its a very definitive guide to virtually every element of online marketing and goes into a lot of detail.  I don't think I've ever read the post in one go, but I often refer back to various bits of it that I'm working on.

Content Based Outreach for Link Building by Justin Briggs

My first link building entry on the list is a great post by Justin over on Outspoken Media.  He outlines a great process which he has used himself with great success.  I think one of the key parts that I liked was the diagram of how you can classify the link targets into buckets:

Competitor Backlink Analysis by Jane Copland

Jane doesn't blog that often any more which is a shame when she produces these kind of posts.  I love the process she goes into and the ideas of classifying the links you find are very actionable.  Also take note of her thoughts around links from C-Class IPs.

Link Bait Guide by Ed Fry

I still struggle to believe this was written by a 17-year-old.  Ed has done a great job on this piece of content which includes videos as well.  Again I don't think I've ever actually read the whole thing in one go, but I still refer back to various sections of it all the time.

Googlebot is Chrome by Joshua Giardino

I only read this a few days ago but have still referred back to it a lot since then.  Even if the concept that Joshua discusses isn't true, the detail he goes into when explaining how it may be possible and feasible is amazing.  Definitely a good educational resource for anyone wanting to learn how crawlers and browsers work.

This diagram alone is great reference material -

I Want to Learn to Code Thread on Hacker News

I know coding isn't for everyone, but if it is and you are just starting out, this is a great discussion thread which I still look at now.  It goes into detail about different opinions on different languages and the pros and cons.  If you are getting started in coding, this is a good one to bookmark.

Why Knowing Everything About SEO Doesn't Mean Shit

I know this is self serving (mainly why its bottom of this list) but I genuinely do refer back to this post a lot.  To be honest I refer to it most when I'm struggling with clients and struggling to get stuff done, or if I just want to refocus.  Plus some of the comments and feedback offer some great ideas on getting SEO done which I often find useful.

Well thats it for my list.  These are the blog posts I refer to and reference the most.  What are yours?  Feel free to leave a comment and let us know!

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