One of the newest books in print about search engine optimization is "The Art of SEO," published by O'Reilly and written by Eric Enge, Stephan Spencer, Rand Fishkin, and href="http://www.alchemistmedia.com/blog/">Jessie C Stricchiola. So what do you get when you pull in four of the most respected people in the SEO business to write a definitive book on the subject? Pretty much exactly what you'd expect: lots of juicy SEO goodness.
While the authors cover some of the basics of search engine optimization, and definitely lay out a good case for the value of SEO for non-believers, this book is not for SEO newbies. This book is more suited to those who already get SEO and have at least a decent grasp on the technical elements that go into good search engine optimization.
While it's not a beginner's guide, this book does cover the entire spectrum of the SEO process from keyword research to implementing on-page optimization, to link building, to measuring the success of your SEO efforts.
"The Art of SEO" also gets into some of the nitty-gritty details that most other normal sized books don't get into. Examples of what I'm talking about include the following:
- Canonical link element
- Search spider control
- CMS issues
- Optimizing Flash
- 301 redirects
- URL rewrites
- Hidden content
- Changing servers
- KPIs for long-tail SEO
I also really like how they cover various topics on how to evaluate and select an SEO firm and how to best utilize your in-house team for maximum search engine success.
It's a big ol' book (600 pages!) and it didn't flow smoothly from one chapter to the next at times, maybe because it was written by four different authors, so it's not really the kind of book you're going to cozy up with to go to sleep. In fact, if you're a search geek like me, it will get your brain juices flowing and you won't be able to think at all because of all the new ideas and things you remembered that you should be doing to optimize your site.
Overall, I was very impressed with The Art of SEO and I think it's the best book on the topic of search engine optimization. You won't be disappointed with the quality and quantity of content in this book. To be fair, I haven't yet read most of the other books listed on SEL's Best SEO Books of 2009 list. It did edge out Kris Jones' book on Lee Odden's poll of the best books of 2009.