SEO 2020 - Safe, Effective Search Engine Optimization
4.6 (515 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
5,009 students enrolled

SEO 2020 - Safe, Effective Search Engine Optimization

Learn safe, "White Hat" SEO that works, and won't get your site penalised.
4.6 (515 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
5,009 students enrolled
Created by Andrew Williams
Last updated 5/2020
English [Auto]
Current price: $135.99 Original price: $194.99 Discount: 30% off
5 hours left at this price!
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
This course includes
  • 7 hours on-demand video
  • 3 articles
  • 1 downloadable resource
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
Training 5 or more people?

Get your team access to 4,000+ top Udemy courses anytime, anywhere.

Try Udemy for Business
What you'll learn
  • Understand the differences between SEO of a few years ago, and SEO today.
  • Why SEO has changed so much in so little time.
  • Why it is unwise to follow SEO advice you find online.
  • Know how to create the type of content that Google loves to rank high in the search engine.
  • Know how to find an unlimited supply of great content ideas.
  • Understand LSI and how to apply it for better SEO & search engine rankings.
  • Know that there are two types of keyword research and be able to carry them both out competently.
  • Know how to wring even more information out of keyword research tools.
  • Know how to find theme words and phrases for any topic using free tools.
  • Know the major SEO factors and how to optimize your pages correctly for these factors.
  • Know how to optimize each on-page SEO factor for maximum benefit.
  • Know what structured data is, and how to implement it on your own site to get rich snippets in the SERPs.
  • How to organize your site content for visitors and the search engines.
  • Know how to effectively link pages on the same site to boost rankings.
  • Understand site authority and what Google are trying to achieve with their algorithm.
  • How to boost your own site authority in the eyes of visitors, and the search engines.
  • Know about Negative SEO and how you can use the Disavow tool to remove any penalty.
  • Know the importance of links in SEO, and how to get those "holy grail" white hat links.
  • Know how to create the most effective types of link bait and then use outreach to get influencers linking to it.
  • Know the Holy Grail of backlinks, and how to maximize your chances of getting them.
  • Know the best ways to build links to your site in a way that Google approves of.
  • Know which types of link building can cause problems and are therefore best avoided.
  • Understand brand mentions and why these are well worth getting as part of your SEO strategy.
  • Why some backlinks might just be for referral traffic.
  • Understand clickthrough rate (CTR) and why it is important to your SEO. You'll also learn how to improve CTR.
  • Learn how to carry out a full SEO audit on the site to find problems that may be hurting your rankings.
  • This course assumes no prior SEO knowledge.
  • If you do know some SEO, then it might be worth forgetting what you think you know, and keeping an open mind.

Starting at the beginning, this SEO course covers everything you need to know to get your pages ranked without resorting to SEO loopholes and tactics that will get your site penalised.

The course covers all aspects of SEO, including the most important - how to get high quality backlinks that won't hurt your rankings.  In fact, since the best backlinks you can "build" are natural, Google will probably approve of them.  I'll show you how to do this as part of your SEO strategy.

Student Reviews for this SEO Course

"The lessons in this course go way beyond pure information. Andrew (the instructor) knows his stuff inside out, and more significantly, he knows how to pass his knowledge clearly so that I can take action on it right away."

"Thanks Andy, I've done the whole course and it is brilliant. It covers the full range of SEO components in a clear, practical and friendly way. I'm quite 'picky' but have no hesitation in recommending it without reservation at all levels from beginner upwards. (I'm probably around the intermediate level). It debunks many common myths and the advice is always actionable."

"Andy is one of the most thorough teachers I've seen on this subject and his knowledge of SEO is brilliant. I like his step by step teaching style and clearly produced videos. I highly recommend this course to anyone wanting to learn SEO"

"This course is loaded with important information and I know I'll be referring back to it as I improve my website. It's a great course."

"Very personable and easy to listen to. He has a tonne of helpful suggestions and is content rich. Anyone who is interested in this type of course don't hesitate to pick up this course. It is the best value for your money that you can find! Very happy with my purchase!"

"I love this course! Andrew is not shy about helping people do the right thing by working in alignment with Google to learn SEO (white hat) fundamentals. The course was thorough and highly informative. Four hours of practical and densely practical instruction that will benefit any business person or webmaster stay up to date with smart SEO advances and practical skills. I sincerely recommend this course!"

"Easy to understand — both well-structured, and great diction! Very methodical and analytical, which is what you want in a good SEO program."

"I love Andy's information. It is very thorough and what he teaches just makes sense. If you're looking for a common sense and safe way to SEO your website then I totally recommend following Andy's advice."

"I have studied SEO and Google for several years now and I think Andrew has covered many topics of importance in a short and concise way for beginners and professionals to learn SEO in depth"

This SEO Course is different because?

  • No SEO tricks

  • No SEO gimmicks

  • No SEO Loopholes

  • No worry about Google slapping a penalty on your site for dodgy SEO practices.

If you want to learn modern SEO and how to make a website rank in Google, safely, effectively and without resorting to gimmicks, tricks and loopholes, then this is the course for you.  With over 15 years of front-line experience in SEO, this instructor has plenty of applied experience and is well known for his high ethics when it comes to ranking in Google. 

The course starts off with an introduction to SEO, highlighting the main differences between SEO today, and SEO just a few short years ago.  You'll learn all about the major Google updates, and why they were introduced.  As you learn about the updates, you'll begin to understand exactly what Google want to achieve, and the types of content they want to rank at the top of the search engine. 

The course goes on to introduce you to the FOUR main pillars of modern SEO. 

1. Quality Content

You'll learn about two types of keyword research and how to do both correctly.  This will provide the best possible SEO platform for your web content.  I'll show you how to use that keyword research to help you rank for multiple keywords without actually optimizing for any one keyword (though I'll show you how to do that too).

You'll learn how to find the type of content that your visitors want to see and how to create it without compromising your SEO efforts.

You'll learn about all of the important on-page SEO factors that will influence your rankings and how to correctly optimize your web pages for those factors.

You'll also learn all about structured data and how it can help your SEO.  Structured data is a special type of content you can embed in your pages that only the search engines see.  Using this structured data, Google can create rich snippets in the search results making your pages stand out more and get higher click-through rates.

2. Site Organisation

You'll learn all about site structure and what is expected by the search engines.  We'll cover page hierarchy and how silos can help organise your content in a more logical way for your visitors and the search engines.

You'll learn about site organisation - why it is important for good SEO, and how to achieve a good site structure that benefits your SEO efforts and helps your visitors

3. Site Authority

Site authority keeps getting more important in modern SEO.  Backlinks are the main way to build your authority, but also the quickest way to destroy it.

You'll learn about the best types of backlinks to pursue, and how to go about getting them.  With backlinks causing so many problems for so many webmasters, you'll also learn about the types of backlinks that Google are on the lookout for, and why they punish sites that employ them.  A lot of SEO sites offering tips on how to rank will get this terribly wrong.  So wrong in fact, that by following their SEO advice,  you are likely to see your site penalised or even banned from the top search engines.

We'll throw the idea of anchor text backlinks out of the window and discuss the best anchor texts for backlinks.  We'll also cover the "holy grail" of backlinks and how to get them.  These are links from high quality, related sites.

We'll talk about broken link building as a good way to get rank-boosting backlinks, and guest posting as a way to build traffic generating backlinks.

4. Visitor Experience

You will learn why it is important to give your visitors a good experience on your site, and build their trust.  I'll show you ways of building that trust.

The second half of this SEO course answers the question many webmasters ask when they find their rankings have started to drop, or gone completely.... "What's happened and what do I do now?".  The complete SEO audit covers a complete set of both subjective and technical checks to make sure your site is not triggering red flags at Google.

Start the SEO 2019 course and begin to take control of your website traffic, visitors and profits.

Who this course is for:
  • This SEO course is designed for anyone that owns a website and wants to get more traffic but doesn't know where to start.
  • The course is for anyone wanting to learn how to build white hat backlinks using "invisible" SEO.
  • This SEO course is for anyone that is confused by all of the Google changes and wants to go forward in a white hat manner that will produce long-term positive rankings.
  • This SEO course is NOT for those webmasters that want to take risks with their SEO for short-term gain. My strategies are long-term, white hat and safe.
Course content
Expand all 93 lectures 06:59:31
+ Introduction to SEO?
5 lectures 21:18

This lecture introduces the instructor and the course.

Preview 03:03

If you have a moment, could you please answer a couple of quick questions before you begin?  Thank you!

Pre-Course Question

What is SEO, and why is it necessary? The introduction to the course identifies exactly what we'll be looking at in this course.

Preview 05:15

Before we look at SEO today, it is important to see where we have come from.

Preview 06:34

Google has battled against webmasters over the years to prevent them from manipulating the search results with loopholes and tricks.  This lecture looks at this, and why Google needed to step up.

Google's Battle for Survival
+ A Strong SEO Foundation
3 lectures 13:44

We've covered a lot of ground already.  This lecture summarizes what we know about SEO today

SEO Today

This lecture looks at the main ranking factors that you need to focus on for better SEO, higher rankings and more traffic.

Top Ranking Factors

Let's look at the 4 main areas of SEO.

The Four Pillars of SEO
+ Quality Content
12 lectures 01:04:17

Is Quality Content really necessary for long-term rankings?

Introducing Quality Content

Believe it or not, Google actually help webmasters by telling us exactly what they want. Only an idiot would ignore that advice.

What Google Tells us They Want

We've seen what Google wants, so let's look at what Google doesn't want.

What Google Doesn't Want

3 Rules that govern the way you create content for your website.

General Content Guidelines

Let me show you some examples of poor quality content.  Believe it or not, this is what pages ranking in Google used to look like.

Examples of Poor Content

How do you get ideas for content that your visitors actually want to see?  This lecture looks at the methods I use to get unlimited content ideas.

Generating Content Ideas

How do you go about ranking for a keyword phrase that you have identified?

Ranking for a Main Keyword Phrase?

This lecture looks at two distinct types of keyword research that you need to master. 

2 Types of Keyword Research

This lecture will show you how to create a Keyword Planner account without needing to enter a credit card or setup an advertising campaign.

Keyword Planner Account

This lecture shows the basics of using Keyword Planner for keyword research.

Keyword Research

Get more keyword data by using this free plugin for Chrome or Firefox.

Keywords Everywhere

Learn how to find the right theme words and phrases to use when you create a piece of content.

Theme Word Research
+ On-Page SEO
10 lectures 47:29

This lecture introduces the main on-page SEO factors to get write as you add content.  We will then explore these factors in more detail in the subsequent lectures.

On-Page SEO Factors

The Page Title is very important, and there are a few rules to follow.

Title Tag

The filename is often an afterthought, especially for Wordpress users. However, it is a ranking factor.


It's not as important as the title, but it's still worth taking the time to craft an enticing, keyword rich description.

Meta Description Tag

Meta Keywords are no longer used to positively help your page rank, but it may still be used by Google to penalize your site.

Meta Keywords Tag

Headlines are important for your visitors and the search engines.


This lecture looks at image optimization and why it is important for your web pages.

Image Optimization

Spelling and grammar will certainly matter to your visitors, but what about the search engines?

Spelling & Grammar

Links create the World Wide Web, but you do need to be careful who you link to.  This lecture looks at potential issues and how to solve the problem.

Links on the page

Your content should be fluff-free. Let's see what that means.

Remove Fluff
+ Structured Data
5 lectures 33:16

There is a type of content that you can add to your pages that is ONLY for the search engines.  It's called structured data, or schema, and it can give the search engines more information about your content so they can create rich snippets for your search engine listings.

Structured Data

This lecture shows you how you can implement structured data in your web pages.

Implementing Structured Data

Google gives us a great tool for testing the structured data on our pages.

Structured Data testing tool

This lecture shows you the plugin I use on my WordPress sites for implementing structured data.  I'll also tell you why I use a plugin.

Structured Data Plugins

This lecture briefly discusses voice search and how it is different from traditionally typed searches.  Do you need to optimize differently for voice search?

Voice Search
+ Site Organization
8 lectures 20:54

It is important to get the site structure right as it is important for your visitors and the search engines.

Site Structure

A clear content hierarchy will help the search engines as well as the visitor and should be well-thought out during the planning stages of your website.

Hierarchy & Silos

You shouldn't have the same sidebar on all pages of your website as it turns links into SiteWide links, which are bad.  Context-sensitive sidebars are the answer.

Context Sensitive Sidebars

Internal linking helps your visitor navigate the site, keeps them there for longer, and will also boost your SERP rankings.

Internal Linking

Content Management systems like WordPress offer users another way of categorizing pages.  They are called tags.  This lecture explains how to use them, and how not to..

WordPress Tags

Google tell us to keep pages static wherever possible, but what does that mean and what if we can't?

Dynamic v Static Pages

A robots.txt file helps to set a few rules about your site, telling spiders and other crawlers what they can and cannot visit. Do we need one?

Robot.txt File

Its a good idea to check how your site looks in the most popular browsers.  There are services you can use to check this.

Check Browser Compatibility
+ Site Authority
13 lectures 01:07:38

Site authority is a vital part of ranking in Google today. Google reward sites with authority.

Introduction to Site Authority

Inbound links hold the key to ranking high in Google, but there is a problem...

Inbound Links: A challenge to your authority!

Anchor text is a small bit of text used in a link. It can be a powerful component of any link, in both positive and negative ways.

Anchor Text Links?

Negative SEO is where one webmaster creates spammy links to another site in an attempt to get that site penalized.

Negative SEO?

To help webmasters fight back against negative SEO, or just irreversible, poor link building tactics that were previously undertaken, Google released the Disavow Tool.

Disavow Tool

There is a special type of backlink that will catapult your site into the top 10 of Google. It's the Holy Grail of backlinks, some say mythical. Let me describe it to you.

The Holy Grail of Backlinks

Some content works better as link bait than others.  This lecture looks at what makes good link bait.

Effective Link Bait

Email Outreach, combined with link bait, is the most effective way to get high quality, white hat backlinks that can skyrocket your traffic.

Email Outreach

Broken link building is an effective way to build high quality links.

Broken Link Building

Guest posting is not as effective as it used to be.  In fact, it may not help your rankings at all.  However, there are other reasons why it is a good idea - perceived authority.

Guest Posting

While backlinks are the answer to good rankings for competitive terms, they are also the reason so many sites get penalized.  Learn about the types of backlinks to avoid.

Backlinks to Avoid

Brand mentions are an increasingly important ranking factor that may be easier to get than backlinks.

Brand Mentions

Backlinks can help rankings, but they can also help bring referral traffic to your site.

Backlinks for Traffic
+ Visitor Experience
8 lectures 33:43

What is visitor experience and why is it important?

Introduction to Visitor Experience

Do people hang around your site, reading the content, or do they leave as quickly as they came? Let's use Google Analytics to find out.

Website Stickiness

When someone clicks on your link in the SERPs, you don't wan them hanging around while the page loads. Check your load speeds and try to remove bloat that is slowing down your page load times.

Site Load Times

Modern Wordpress themes are responsive, that is, they adjust to the screen they are displayed on. This makes responsive themes great for viewing on desktops or mobile devices, and you definitely should be using a responsive theme.

Responsive Design

What do visitors see above the fold on your website?

Above the Fold

Modern SEO is about building trust with the visitor and the search engine. Let's consider ways we can do that.

Build On-Site Trust

CTR is the clickthrough rate of a page from the SERPs.  Is it a ranking factor?  Maybe, maybe not.

Is CTR a ranking factor?

This lecture looks at ways you can try to improve CTR, which in return will bring you more traffic.

Improve CTR
+ SEO Audit
29 lectures 01:57:11

This lecture introduces this section of the SEO course.

SEO Audit

Your domain name can affect your ability to rank, but not always in a positive way.

Domain Name

Your page needs to use it's real estate carefully, especially above the fold.  This check looks at what you are putting on your web pages.

Web Page Real Estate

You know what the structure should be like, so let's check.

Site Structure

Comments can be a possible cause for concern, so this lecture makes sure you have your bases covered.


This check will make sure your visitors can share your content with their social media followers, but also make sure they can find your social media channels.

Social Presence

Trust is huge, so this check makes sure your web pages contain trust signals.

Would you trust this site?

Visitors can funnel information about your pages back to Google because of Bounce rates and time on site.  Let's check these factors on your site.

Bounce Rates & Time on Site

Legal pages are really important, so make sure you have the ones you need.

Legal Pages

Can you evaluate the quality of your own content in a constructive way?  You need to.

Content Quality

Check the links pointing at your own pages, and make sure they don't scream "link scheme" at Google.

Inbound Link Profile

This lecture shows you a few real cases where SEO was done badly.  Can you spot why SEO is so bad in these examples?

What's Wrong?

The Screaming Frog SEO Spider is the most complete all in one SEO tool that I know of, and there is a free version which will work on smaller sites.

Screaming Frog SEO Spider

For Screaming Frog Pro users, it's a good idea to connect Google Analytics and Search Console to the spider.  There are also other APIs that you can connect to get even more data about your web site.

Connect Analytics and Search Console

Let's get the technical audit started by crawling our website.

Crawling your Site

Response codes tell us if pages on the site have problems that need to be fixed.  This check will go through the response codes and highlight the important ones you need to check for your own site.

Response Codes

Are the pages you want indexed by Google available to Google?  Are those pages you want Google to ignore setup to be ignored?


Not to be confused with page load times, server response times are the first part of that equation, and the Screaming Frog spider can tell you yours.

Server Response Times

Outbound links are those that point at other websites.  Make sure that all of your outbound links still point where you think they do.

Outbound Link Issues

Page titles are one of the most important tags on a web page, so carry out these checks to make sure they are optimal.

Page Titles

Let's check those meta descriptions for common errors and mistakes.

Meta Description

Meta Keywords are something to avoid in my opinion, but if you do use them, or your clients use them, then make sure they are being used responsibly with this check.

Meta Keywords

H1 headers should be used for the main headline on the page, but are often misused by theme designers.  This check will look at yours.

H1 Headers

H2 headers can be checked using the spider, though the checks are slightly different to H1 headers.  H3 headers cannot be checked with the spider, but should follow the same guidelines as the H2 headers.

H2 & H3 Headers

Images should be optimized, so let's use the spider to check the important factors.


The most important pages on your site should have the most inbound links from other pages on your site.  Do they?


Word Count might be useful to help identify thin content, but it's not something I generally look at.  I'll explain why.

Word Count

Now that you have finished the course, would you like to help me make it better?

Post-Course Questions

Containing all of the resources and links mentioned in the course.