On Wednesday, popular SEO toolset provider Semrush made an announcement that could change the course of the company entirely: It had acquired SEO training platform Backlinko for an undisclosed amount. To any SEO expert – or anyone who’s ever Googled an SEO-related question – both these names are well-known. Actually, “well-known” is an understatement. This is the SEO equivalent of McDonald’s acquiring Beyond Meat: Suddenly, it has a whole new cohort of customers.

In the announcement, Semrush said,

“The desire to acquire Backlinko was fueled by Semrush’s commitment to inspiring both the current and next generation of digital marketers. Today’s marketers require not only the highest quality tools, they also need best-in-class training from real experts and practitioners in the field.”

Semrush itself has always been a destination for SEO insights, thanks to its education hub, Semrush Academy. But for easy-to-understand training on everything from the simple to technical sides of SEO, Brian Dean’s Backlinko is on another level. Backlinko, for one, draws in half a million organic visits every month. Dean’s robust online resources have helped millions of SEOs, marketers and laypeople of varying expertise. And now, that audience essentially belongs to Semrush. 

With the acquisition, Dean and his Backlinko team will work on growing the Semrush Academy by creating and curating brand-new content for the platform. Currently, there’s no word on what might happen to the Backlinko.com site itself in the future. But Dean did say in a tweet that he would be working on Backlinko on a part-time basis.

How has the SEO community reacted to the news? As Search Engine Land reported, it’s been with some skepticism. Many SEOs have been questioning the motivation behind the acquisition. Is it purely for a strong backlink profile? And how much would that be worth, in Semrush’s eyes? 

But considering the fact that Semrush Holdings Inc. shares were up 5.5 percent once publications caught wind of the announcement, it’s difficult to believe Semrush didn’t know exactly what it was doing. Either way, we’re intrigued to see Semrush Academy’s next moves with Dean at the helm. 

More SEO News You Can Use

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Editor’s Note: “SEO News You Can Use” is a weekly blog post posted every Monday morning only on SEOblog.com, rounding up all the top SEO news from around the world. Our goal is to make SEOblog.com a one-stop-shop for everyone looking for SEO news, education and for hiring an SEO expert with our comprehensive SEO agency directory.