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Future of SEO Training - What Are Your Best options 
for a Career in SEO?

By John Alexander


SEO Training of the Past:

If you think back to just 10 Years ago, when it came to studying search engine optimization skills, there was very little in the way of solid educational resources that were comprehensive and kept up-to-date. Any type of career training in search engine optimization or even just basic SEO skills training was being sold online - and in the early days, often by people who where not really educators in but might be better classified as marketers. 

Fair enough because In the earliest days, there was no acronym for search engine optimization because it didn't even exist. In the earliest days, what was that phrase again - I think most referred to it as "web Positioning."

Earlier than that, it was not even about ranking in the beginning. But the message was usually about "search engine submissions" with a pitch that you must submit to thousands of search engines regularly in order to be successfully found. Usually a plug for some type of submission software that would promise to get you traffic "through massive submission." Most of us in those days fell for it and gave it a try, but the end result of these types of programs was that it usually generated a ton of junk mail from FFA  (Free for All) sites.

There was the occasional newsletter type publication. Some free and some were paid. Some were worth it and some became pretty obsolete quickly. Then there were others that leaned eventually more towards hyped up "get rich quick" type pitches rather than sharing any valuable information such as it was back then.  

Then there were the SEO forums which were great and still are (but then some of the forums were not so great) as topics might sometimes be skewed to a degree to try and make SEO much more difficult than it is. But the forums were free and there still are some decent forums today. One of the problems with some of the forums was the arguing and flaming that seemed to go on (only in some of them.) It was nearly like some people were posting attacks on other people just to try and gather a crowd of observers. The other challenge with some forums was that everyone went by an alias, so you never really knew where the advise was really coming from. 

Forums still exist today and there are some good helpful ones around too. 

SEO Forums:

Search Engine Watch Forums - Many of the students who attend our Workshops recognize Search Engine Watch as one of the more established forums. Many of the long time SEO industry names participate in this here.

Webmaster World Forums - is a very large forum started by SEO Brett Tabke

Crea8asite Forums - Well established with some good information sharing from time to time. Plus there are others.

My own early discovery of early SEO Training Type Resources:

As someone working away at SEO myself back in 1997 - I  had a client that mentioned someone he had met that seemed really sharp with search engine optimization. And that is where I first learned about what was known as the Academy of Web Specialists which was Robin Nobles first online training company back in 1998. All my client had said to me was that this person he had met was a student of SEO and had her training at the Academy, so I looked into it. Back then, here was the very first SEO training program I found that seemed to be organized, comprehensive and loaded with value driven content. The other thing I liked was the fact that the courses had been reviewed, approved and recognized by the University of Southern Mississippi for the option of earning "University CEUs"  (Continuing Education Units.)  Someone had taken the time to get the courses recognized by the US educational system - now that was different. Cool - I thought so I joined. 

Over time, little did I know, that in just a few short years, eventually I would be inviting Robin Nobles to come help me teach my very first live hands-on Workshop in San Antonio, Texas and after that, by January 2002 we would form our first brand new business together as Search Engine Workshops.

SEO Skills Training from the comfort of home  

The Academy of Web Specialists no longer exists, but Robin's complete online SEO courses are available both in self study and in Instructor Facilitated Versions through Online Web Training. For certification through online training, you are required to take the "instructor led" online courses as certification can only be earned online this way. 
Okay, enough about the old days. 

Let's fast forward to today SEO Training Today and for the future:

Today search engine optimization training comes in many forms and styles. In fact, like SEO itself, there are some types of offerings that are very different than others. 

Major Seminars and Conferences: 

There are still the big seminars which are often excellent places to network, learn the SEO basics in a seminar format and they usually have a range of different types of conference speakers as well as guests from the major search engines such as Google, MSN or Yahoo. There are often trade-shows with little booths displaying various companies products as well.

These seminars usually attract many beginners as well as some professionals and are an excellent place to attend if you enjoy the conference style of learning. You pick and choose which speakers you want to listen to, organize your day so that you can catch most of what you feel will be interesting to you. You will often meet friends at these conferences or make new friends and it's fair to say you'll have a good time.

Major seminars and conferences you may want to check out: 
Search Engine Strategies
Webmaster World
Search Marketing Expo

Other Online SEO Communities:

The SEO Workshop Resource Center gives you access to courses, Webinars, live SEO Instructional sessions, SEO Professionals Group, plus access to 4 years of archived instructional sessions. Not an SEO Forum so much as a community of SEOs who share strategies, regular instructional on-screen sessions, live Webinars on every topic, plus on-demand webinars and access to all basic and advanced courses at one low price.

Free SEO Training Programs: - things to be aware of occasionally

Free SEO Training Programs appear from time to time where you can attend a conference for free. 

The one thing to keep in mind with some free SEO conferences, is that from time to time you may be surprised by the delivery of the information in a variety of formats. Sometimes, because the conference is "free to attend" there will be a certain amount of psychological or manipulative tactics or high pressure sales may be employed.

Things to keep in mind when attending free events...

What are these tactics and why are these tactics employed? 

Most likely there are always a percentage of the attendees than can be pressured or bullied into spending. Anytime you feel that you are being put into a feeling of awkwardness about saying no thank you, then it's usually nothing but awkwardness from there in (if you don't stand your ground.) 

Most people are tired of strong arm methods for high pressure sales.  

Nevertheless, always remember that if the event is a big one and 100% free - there is more chance of high pressure sales because someone has to pay the bills at the end. These tactics can take you by surprise if you are expecting to just attend a seminar to learn new things, then find that after every presenter finishes speaking that they are allotted up to an 1 hour to lay on high pressure sales tactics. 

In all fairness, I'm sure this is not the case with every "free training event" but just be aware that it can (and does) happen. If you attend the free style training, just use good wisdom and go prepared. 

Free SEO Training Groups that are the exception:

You can usually attend Free SEO Meet Up groups without concern - but the pressure tactics are connected more with the bigger free conferences. Usually ones that heavily push wealth creation or say they are giving away huge bonuses and get rich quick schemes. I could write and entire article around this, but let's get back to discussing still other legitimate real SEO skills.
There is still yet an entirely different approach to SEO skills training and this is the model that I believe is one of the most effective as far as actually imparting the genuine skills to a participant in minimal time and with the highest degree of accuracy and success. Nothing quite matches personalized training face-to-face with a good ongoing support even after the training has been completed. 

A Real World Local Community Approach to SEO Training:  

This is the SEO Training that based on imparting genuine SEO skills to each participant in a face-to-face Workshop that includes ongoing support after the class ends with the Free 6 month Mentoring Program. Training with fresh approaches to SEO accuracy, individual and group exercises, demonstrations, examples but most importantly, each class is delivered to only to a tiny group of individuals (so each participant gets personalized coaching.)

No sneaky up sells or expensive mentoring programs because the free mentoring program is included in the cost of tuition. No hidden agendas or surprises. Just face-to-face search engine optimization training and Internet Marketing skills imparted to each attendee with tremendous attention to detail focusing on each participant.

With today's educational options in SEO, making a swing more towards "real world" training it's a fact that more and more businesses want to bring SEO skills excellence in-house. And they are no longer going to feel like they have to put their staff on a plane - because the Workshops are available locally.

One of the things that came from our first years of teaching students in many different class styles, was the secondary new business concept that was born in back in 2004 - with the Search Engine Academy Local SEO Skills Training.

"SEO skills training with a difference"

  • The idea with Search Engine Academy was to establish local SEO schools in business communities right around the globe so that people can attend a Workshop right in their own community.
  • A Workshop focused on personal interaction with each participant (rather than a traditional "run of the mill" seminar.) Small class size instead of having hundreds in attendance.
  • A place close to home - where students could be updated and even have the benefits of ongoing support and mentoring (at no extra cost.)
  • Classes that offer more flexibility but always had the freshest research and most up to date information - yet delivered in a way so that the business owner gains understanding. 

Search Engine Academy

The Science of exactness in SEO
 delivered to each participant with ongoing mentoring & support .

SEO Skills Training, Certification and 6 month Mentoring in a Community near you

The idea with Search Engine Academy was to establish local SEO schools in business communities right around the globe so that people can attend a Workshop in their own community. 

Students seem to love the aspect of SEO skills taught in small groups and face to face and with a 6 month free mentoring program after class plus no need to travel our fly out-of-State.

Search Engine Academy teaches basic SEO, Advanced SEO and offers SEO certification training in 2 Day, 3-Day and Complete 5-Day Workshops in business communities across the country in US, Canada and in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia too.

The Search Engine Academy Workshops offer:

  • Comprehensive, current and value-driven content that teaches you how to measure SEO influences accurately
  • A curriculum that reflects the "real world" exercises
  • Recognition and tracking of learner achievements - with daily evaluation process
  • Consistent high-quality and cost-effective training - followed 6 month free mentoring program
  • The most sophisticated SEO training for exact accuracy in the minimal time and with zero guess work
  • the Search Engine Workshop is delivered exactly as Robin Nobles and I do, but right in your own local community. For Workshops dates and locations see our future dates page here.

Unique Search Engine Academy Benchmarks:

  • Search Engine Academy and Search Engine Workshops is one of the fastest growing families of "real world" SEO educators with community locations now delivering Workshops in over 20 different cities locally across the United States, Canada and in Asia.
  • Toronto Search Engine Academy and Montreal Search Engine Academy has assisted Yahoo! Canada in rolling out of one of it's programs.
  • Search Engine Academy was chosen by the US Patent office as the organization to deliver a series of SEO trainings to about 150 US patent office clerks. The US Patent office requires the very best sources of training since they are the same ones who must review new patents being presented to them by Google, MSN, Yahoo and any other search engines for consideration of the patent process of granting a patent. 
  • Search Engine Academy was one of the very first SEO training organizations to deliver an advanced workshop to staff attending from a major search engine.
  • Search Engine Academy and Search Engine Workshops collectively have delivered SEO training to small groups of all types of ordinary businesses people from retail, wholesale and manufacturing to such professional services such as legal services, real estate professionals and accounting. SEO skills training has been delivered to artists, to hospitals as well as to both Canadian and US governments including the Royal Canadian Mint. 

Search Engine Workshops

Search Engine Workshops are the live workshops that Robin Nobles and I personally conduct together from time to time. These also include options for 2-Days, 3-Days Advanced or 5-Day Complete Workshops. For next Search Engine Workshops next dates, please see the registration page for locations will be in Orlando and Las Vegas and various dates.

Check our list of Local Community SEO Workshop Locations and Dates here.

Read student success stories after the Workshop here.

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About John Alexander:

John has taught onsite search engine marketing sessions to small groups of people from over 80 different countries, and he's worked as a professional in the search engine industry for years. John Alexander and Robin Nobles teamed up together in 2002 to create the Ultimate SEO Mastery Workshop. For more information about their newest live, personal, SEO Training Workshops, please visit Search Engine Workshops. For local SEO Community Workshops visit Search Engine Academy for a Workshop located near you. John and Robin also offer complete online SEO Training Courses and John writes Free SEO Tips daily.

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