Today, there are approximately 1.86 billion websites. Almost every business has a website, and it needs search optimization across various search engines to reach its prospective clients. Search engine optimization (SEO) improves a website’s visibility and ranking in results from search engines, such as Google and Bing.
The fast-paced growth of online businesses and services due to Covid-19 resulted in the flurry of demand for professionals from the $80 billion-dollar SEO industry. Digital marketing and online advertising are in high demand. Therefore, learning SEO strategies is a good way to secure a fast-growing, futureproof career in tech. Read on to find out what SEO professionals do, how much they make, and how you can join them.
What Is SEO?
SEO, or search engine optimization, improves a website, page, application, or any other content’s visibility in prospective clients’ online search results. The possibility of attracting additional clients and maintaining previous clients rises with a website’s search engine ranking position (SERP).
There are various SEO strategies that SEO teams use to achieve this, such as link building to increase organic traffic, meta descriptions for online content, title tags, and keyword strategies by using relevant keywords.
Now, digital marketing considers SEO an essential factor for effective professional marketing and advertisement campaigns. Search engine marketing and advertising techniques are now incorporating aspects of SEO to come up with effective campaigns to boost visibility and SERP compared to competitors.
The growing demand for SEO professionals has pushed many digital marketing professionals into acquiring SEO skills and knowledge of SEO tools, encouraging digital marketers to learn search engine marketing and transition into SEO specialists.
What Do SEO Professionals Do?
A search engine optimization professional, or an SEO specialist, optimizes websites to gain a higher search engine results page (SERP). They are experts in generating more organic search traffic from search engines using relevant keywords, increasing keyword density, and utilizing different types of SEO tools. Below you’ll find more on what SEO professions do.
- Generate more leads. Developing organic traffic from organic searches creates opportunities to reach prospective clients, ensuring business growth and profit.
- Website or page optimization. SEO professionals increase website, page, or application traffic through link building and other SEO techniques. There are two types of optimization: On-page and off-page. On-page optimization focuses on using relevant keywords, title tags, and original content, while off-page concentrates on the volume and quality of links.
- Utilize content marketing strategies to drive content creation. SEO experts ensure the use of high-quality content for web pages with appropriate title tags, high keyword density, meta descriptions, and links to articles as part of SEO content strategy.
- Monitor and analyze search algorithms behind search engine results. SEO specialists stay updated with shifts in the SEO field and adapt to the current trends.
- Create social media campaigns to broadcast content. SEO professionals are involved with social media campaigns and promote outbound links to backlink to the website.
- Promote a good user experience. SEO experts focus on providing a good user experience to optimize the conversion rate of visitors and prospective clients into active users and clients.
- Regularly check trending search terms and rankings. SEO specialists use various analytics tools to survey a website’s performance, conduct competitor analysis, and recommend improvements.
How Much Do SEO Professionals Make?
How much an SEO professional makes varies significantly. The two main factors are their employment status and the SEO position they hold. A freelance SEO specialist working for a few hours a week may average $20,000 a year, while a director at a large SEO firm earns a salary of around $113,000.
SEO Professionals Average Salaries
The average SEO salary depends on the job title and SEO experience. An entry-level SEO specialist in a digital marketing agency or an upcoming company averages $49,589 annually, according to Glassdoor. Other junior SEO positions, such as SEO researchers and content writers, have annual salaries ranging from $30,000 to $75,000, respectively.
There are also several high-paying SEO roles available. An SEO content marketer earns an annual average of around $61,306, while an SEO manager’s median salary is around $72,652 per year. The highest-paying SEO job is the SEO director, who averages $95,370 per year.
What Is the Job Growth for SEO?
Currently, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not provide data specifically recording the job outlook for SEO professionals. The most relevant data it has is for advertising and marketing managers, which can be used to predict the SEO industry’s overall growth.
BLS data shows that the market for advertising and marketing managers is projected to grow by ten percent between 2020 and 2030. Taking this into consideration, plus the fact that digital marketing is becoming more common, the projected job outlook for SEO specialists is exceptional and has several potential career paths.
The Highest-Paying Types of SEO Jobs in 2022
- Director of SEO | $95,370
- Senior SEO Manager | $93,523
- SEO Project Manager | $81,070
- SEO Manager | $72,652
- SEO Digital Marketer | $71,164
- SEO Marketing Manager | $69,568
- SEO Content Marketer | $61,306
- SEO Strategist | $58,091
- SEO Account Manager | $55,361
- SEO Consultant | $53,765
There are several ways to increase your earnings in the SEO industry. The top two ways are to climb the business ladder and build your own high-ranking websites to get prospective clients. For both ways, you’ll need to grow your SEO skills and techniques, and incorporate advertising and marketing principles. Below are the highest-paying SEO jobs in the SEO business hierarchy.
Director of SEO
Average Salary: $95,370
An SEO director’s annual average salary is $95,370. They supervise the performances of SEO managers and lead SEO strategy development and implementation. SEO directors also liaise between campaign clients and the SEO teams to ensure that the projects are implemented within the time frame and budget and meet the SEO standards.
Senior SEO Manager
Average Salary: $93,523
A senior SEO manager’s pay range is $59,000 to $147,000 with an approximate average of $93,523 per year. Senior SEO managers spearhead the comprehensive development of effective search strategies, research and analyze upcoming SEO and market trends, and collaborate with different departments to generate steady organic search traffic.
SEO Project Manager
Average Salary: $81,070
The SEO project manager oversees project planning, resourcing, budget, and timely project completion. Many successful project managers have a project management professional (PMP) certification, keen attention to detail, and excellent communication skills. Their yearly wage averages at $81,070.
Average Salary: $72,652
The average salary of SEO managers is $72,652. They lead a team of SEO specialists in improving the SERP of the company and boosting its presence in online directories. They present different SEO strategies to the client and help them choose the best one for their business.
SEO Digital Marketer
Average Salary: $71,164
SEO Marketing Manager
Average Salary: $69,568
An SEO marketing manager pushes high-volume organic search development while planning and implementing SEO programs, such as opportunity analysis, campaign planning, and audits. They determine possible opportunities and recommend launches, updates, and expansions to increase search visibility.
SEO marketing managers monitor and observe a website’s performance in organic search in comparison to its top competitor sites.
SEO Content Marketer
Average Salary: $61,306
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Average Salary: $58,091
SEO strategists are the main developers of the overall SEO strategy a website will use. They have an in-depth understanding of the overall marketing strategy and adjust the SEO strategy to satisfy the set objectives and reach the target audience. These strategists are skilled researchers who have a knack for finding the right keywords for each project.
SEO Account Manager
Average Salary: $55,361
The SEO account manager manages several assigned accounts’ SEO and cross-channel strategies. They oversee the performance and development of each account team under them to meet the set goals and timelines. An account manager builds and maintains a strong business relationship with clients by sharing marketing performance, timelines, and campaign progress.
Average Salary: $53,765
SEO consultants plan, implement, and manage the overall SEO strategy of a business. They have a wide variety of tasks like online digital marketing, web analytics, link building, copywriting, and content and keyword strategy planning. They work in teams pinpointing prospective clients, identifying essential SEO key performance indicators (KPIs), and monitoring page redirects, click rates, and bounce rates.
SEO Career Path
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a relatively new field. Although there are related fields of study, currently, there are no traditional four-year college programs specifically for SEO. Below are steps you can take to become an SEO professional.
- Attend an intensive, specialized digital marketing bootcamp.
- Earn a bachelor’s degree in marketing, advertising, or other business-related fields.
- Take an SEO online course and earn a certification.
- Self-study to learn the basic to advanced SEO concepts, SEO tools, and digital marketing practices.
- Develop and practice your SEO skills through optimizing your own sites.
Should You Become an SEO Professional?
Yes, you should become an SEO professional if you have an interest in tech and digital marketing. Becoming an SEO professional is one of the best careers today. It is a stable and financially rewarding field with diverse opportunities.
Nowadays, everything is connected to the web, from sales to customer services. This creates a consistent demand for SEO professionals. SEO skills are extremely valuable as they’re tricky to master and are beneficial to almost all businesses.
Types of SEO Careers FAQ
No, SEO is not hard to learn. You have to be adaptable and quick-thinking to keep up with the market demands. With the abundance of online resources available, you can start learning SEO to become an SEO expert.
To become a good SEO specialist, you’ll need critical and analytical thinking, excellent communication skills, and adaptability. Skills in digital marketing, data analytics, content writing, competitor analysis, and link building are also essential in a successful SEO professional.
SEO professionals use a wide variety of tools and software for analytics, content publishing, keyword generation, copywriting, and website graphic designing. Some of the most popular SEO tools include Google Search Console, Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools, Data Studio, and SEMrush SEO toolkit.
SEO specialists work in almost every industry. The majority of job openings for SEO specialists are in the marketing and advertising industry. A lot of SEO specialists work for content marketing and advertising companies.
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