SEO – Learn to think like an SEO developer

SEO - Learn to think like an SEO developer

Today’s marketplace demands that SEO practitioners understand more about website development than ever before. You don’t have to know programming to be good at SEO, but a genuine technical SEO has the ability to develop a website using nothing more than a text editor.

What SEO practitioners and web developers have in common is that we all use search extensively as part of our jobs, although each profession’s particular searches are quite different. As a technical SEO or SEO developer you’re going to search for programming error messages you encounter to solve specific problems when you get stuck.

A new series to learn programming for SEO

As a search professional, you have an advantage over others learning to program who don’t have an SEO background. That being said, it can be difficult to navigate the information on programming for SEO that is distributed across the web. There are standalone articles, including pieces from Google, that tackle intriguing but highly specific subject matter for developers. Important but isolated blog posts can be hard to understand when you’re just starting out. Courseware on programming languages can prove disappointing.

If you are looking for a path from SEO to technical SEO or SEO Developer, we will be presenting a series of articles to help you navigate methodically, rather than haphazardly seeking guidance from the far corners of the internet.

Get ready to learn

We will be publishing this new series on programming for SEO over the next several months. To participate along with us, you will need:

  1. A serious interest in ramping up your programming skills.
  2. An idea of where you are and where you want to be on the technical spectrum.
  3. A compatible workstation with networking and connectivity.

There are exceptions, but the general rule is that nearly all web programming is done on workstations running MacOS Unix, Gnu/Linux, or Windows Subsystem for Linux. Your operating system GUI is designed to hide the complexity of your computer from you, and we’re going to spend more time with a command-line interpreter (CLI) interface.

It’s not as hard as it sounds, and we’ll follow a logical game plan. We’ll delve into thorny issues such as application security and user privacy rights. We’ll explore ways to communicate marketing ideas to technical people by gaining valuable insight with real world technical experience. Primarily, we’ll be discussing how you can begin creating prototypes of websites using popular frameworks in order to learn technical SEO in the modern age.

Initial steps

Here is an outline of where we’ll start:

  • Terminal (open the emulator).
    • Begin with Bourne shell command-line interpreter (CLI).
    • Exploring your workstation.
    • Open a secure remote shell session.

As referenced above, we’re going to use a CLI for accessing your computer — “closer to the metal” — than by way of the GUI, which normally windows your operating system interactivity. You’ll trade the familiarity of using computers through file explorer windows (like Finder on Mac), for “hacking” — using a terminal emulator window running the CLI. Terminal may open in a window, but at least it’s a window to the innards of your computer.

  • Command line text editors
    • Why vi?
    • Other popular choices
    • Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP)

We’re going to go far beyond a simple text editor to get you familiar with the basics of using a proper programmer’s text editor. We’ll also tinker with stream editors, but vi (pronounced Vee-Eye) has been around since 1976 and is still going strong because it has the kind of power that programmers demand. You’ll also find it essential for doing work in the cloud.

Package managers are the “plugins” interface for programming languages. Since we’re going to learn how to prototype websites using various frameworks, we’re going to explore several coding languages which means you’ll learn how to update, upgrade, and install programming language packages, which is accomplished using package manager programs.

Once you’ve tackled these subjects, we’ll get into software version control so you can clone sample projects. You’ll soon be on your way to becoming an SEO developer.

About The Author

Detlef Johnson is Editor at Large for Third Door Media. He writes a column for Search Engine Land entitled “Technical SEO for Developers.” Detlef is one of the original group of pioneering webmasters who established the professional SEO field more than 20 years ago. Since then he has worked for major search engine technology providers, managed programming and marketing teams for Chicago Tribune, and consulted for numerous entities including Fortune 500 companies. Detlef has a strong understanding of Technical SEO and a passion for Web programming. As a noted technology moderator at our SMX conference series, Detlef will continue to promote SEO excellence combined with marketing-programmer features and webmaster tips.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *