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Keywords: Google, web development, search engine optimisation

Title: The ABC of SEO

Author: David George

Publisher: Lulu Press

ISBN: 1411622510

Media: Book

Level: Introductory

Verdict: Recommended

As suggested by the title, 'ABC of SEO' is an alphabetic romp through the often arcane world of search engine optimisation. Now, an ABC book is often as interesting to read as a telephone directory, but not in this case. Author David George has succeeded in writing a book that is interesting, engaging and can be read cover to cover.

All of main SEO topics, such as ranking, keyword selection, page rank algorithms and so on are well covered. The definitions in the book are quite extensive in some cases, discussion of Google's PageRank algorithm, for example, extends across many pages and goes into a lot of detail. However the aim of the book is not simply to provide accurate definitions or to act as an search engine lexicon, the aim is to impart some best practices so that the reader can optimise and increase traffic to his or her web site.

Here again the book succeeds in providing good and bad practices. The good includes sound advice on ensuring that a site is richly linked internally so that good page rank gets shared around, pointers to useful online resources, discussion of keyword selection and much more. Note also that while Google does have a major share of the coverage, it's not the only game in town and the book makes sure that other search engines and directories are also mentioned.

In terms of things to avoid link farms, keyword stuffing, jump pages and so on are clearly described and health warnings attached accordingly. Trying to design a site specifically for search engine spiders, for example, is also greatly discouraged. The advice proffered is both sensible and practical.

The writing is well-pitched and should present no difficulties for the average web master/mistress. While no in-depth knowledge of search engine optimisation is assumed, it is assumed that the reader understands how web sites are put together and what search engines do. Even technical issues, such as web spiders and robots, are discussed is a manner that is both informative and useful to the web developer.

In all this is a good read and likely to be of value to most web developers. While it can't promise to drive millions to your site, it can certainly come up with suggestions of things to do (and not to do) to help improve things. Recommended.

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Contents © TechBookReport 2005. Published April 25 2005