May 28, 2008
The Advanced Search Engine Optimization course from the SEMPO Institute is one of the two courses that make up their "Search Masters Series," which have been "designed for experts by experts."
Like the "Insider's Guide to Search Marketing" course, everything is done online in a distance-learning format. It is self-paced so you can do as much or as little of a lesson or module as you want at any given time. The Advanced SEO course expands on SEMPO's introductory course by providing more advanced tips and knowledge on critical topics in search marketing. Like the introductory course, this one has been authored by experts in the SEO industry and peer-reviewed by additional SEO professionals in order to provide you with current and accurate tips, techniques and best practices.
The course consists of five modules, each containing three lessons:
One of my favorite modules was "Advanced Keyword Research." I really liked how it presents a ton of tips and tricks and then wraps it all up in one final lesson where they give you free 30-day access to Wordtracker /wordtracker so you can follow along and do it yourself. I hadn't used Wordtracker before, so it was fun to try it out.
My least favorite module was "Reporting & Analytics," as I thought it was a bit too brief and lacking in substance. They present some solid basic tips, and I understand that this is not an analytics course, but they could improve this module by adding some more in-depth how-to information.
I thought the material as a whole is very educational and thorough. In some cases, however, I did scratch my head in doubt or confusion on a tactic or idea. Also, some of the same issues that plagued the previous course pop up in this one as well, such as grammatical errors, typos, non-functioning links, and ambiguous test questions, to name a few. I can understand why some questions would be ambiguous, as things are constantly changing and nothing in search marketing is an exact science; but there's no excuse for a professional course of this caliber to have typos and grammatical errors.
What this course does well is provide you with loads of new or reinforcing information that you can use on your own website or on those of your clients. Each lesson in the modules is thorough and can take some time to complete if you are truly interacting with the material as you should. There is a lot more how-to information in this course than in the basic one, which is great.
For the price, there are other specialized training workshops or seminars that may be more beneficial in terms of cost-effectiveness, but when compared to other online training vehicles, this is a very solid solution. Plus, if you're after a certificate of completion that you can add to your résumé, you get that with this SEMPO Institute course.
[Note from Jill:
Get the High Rankings Discount!
The full cost for this SEMPO course is $1399; however, as a High Rankings Advisor reader, you get a 10% discount! Simply use the discount code of HIGHR10 when you enroll, and you'll automatically receive the lower price. Here's where you enroll.]