Hi friends, it’s me Dan. Your friendly SEO curmudgeon in training.
Recently the SEO community (cough cough, SEO Twitter) has been caught up in a veritable tizzy about knowing HTML. Beyond the obvious epistemological considerations, I think there is a real ontological question raised by the primacy of HTML as a programming language in the SEOs toolkit.
It’s hard to have these conversations when we probably aren’t all on the same page about what “knowing” something means.
When can I say I “know” a language? How technical do I have to be to be a “Technical” SEO? It requires a conversation within a conversation.
— Kim Doughty (@howdydoughty) September 3, 2020
So I ask you:
What even is an SEO, and can you even be one if you reject the fundamental nature of HTML?
Spoilers, yes and I do.
Let’s start up front, HTML is a front end web development language. If you don’t do front end work, things like HTML don’t really mean much to you. Here is a spoiler for you; not all SEO roles involve front end auditing. I guess I can see why this is a little controversial, as the traditional conception of SEO is based around this idea of an SEO freelancer jill-of-all-trades. However, this doesn’t make much sense as a way to organize modern SEO functions. First of all, because teams are cool, and collaboration is cool. Even if your teams have 10x SEOs (think mythical 10x engineer) the idea of a freelancer centric model of SEO feels…