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Common SEO Job Titles Explained

One of the most frustrating things about trying to get a job in the SEO field, in my opinion, is knowing what jobs to apply for and which ones fit your skill-set.

Why?

Because not understanding the job titles and their responsibilities may lead to you doing more work than what you should be doing for that particular job.

Which is bogus!

So in this post, I’m going to explore with you five common SEO job titles, their duties and the type of work they do.

This will help you better structure your time so you are actually applying for jobs that fit your current skill set.

 Let’s get started:

1. SEO Specialist

An SEO Specialist, sometimes referred to simply as an “SEO expert”  is somewhat of a generalist in the SEO field as they may be asked to do a variety of tasks, from link building to technical SEO. 

Nowadays, a specialist may even be asked to write content for a website, so a creative thinking process is required.

In a company structure, they generally report to a manager, director or someone who is more senior than them, as this is typically an entry-level position.

Salary wise; they typically make anywhere from $38k – $79K a year depending on the company, experience, and the type of projects they work on.

Here are some common task they perform:

  • Perform Keyword research
  • Optimize On-Page content for Title Tags, Meta Descriptions, Heading and Alt Texts
  • Monitor data via Google Analytics and Search Console
  • Make SEO Suggestions for blog and landing page content
  • Build internal links

For more information on what SEO specialists do, refer to my SEO specialist career guide and my post 5 typical task SEO specialists perform.

In my opinion, this is the best job to get started with if you are new to SEO or have been freelancing in the field for a while.

As you will have an opportunity to learn and gain experience, and you will be able to work with many different types of clients, if you work at an agency.

2. SEO Analyst

The next role is an SEO analyst, which is a position that is typically filled at a larger company and it’s a position that will require you to be more analytical in your work.

Essentially, you are responsible for running SEO audits for the client (s) that you are working for, and then making suggestions for improvements to their websites based on the results of those audits. 

SEO analysts can expect to make anywhere from $44k – $96K a year, and need to have;  2 – 4 years experience on average.

Here are some common task they perform:

  • Perform Keyword research
  • Use Google Analytics to track organic traffic
  • Monitor and report on SEO trends and performance
  • Use Excel spreadsheets to compile reports
  • Find and implement Link-Building strategies

If you are someone who loves tables, and graphs and you have a great understanding of how to interpret data, then this is a great role to get started with.

3. SEO Strategist 

A strategist is responsible for creating and executing the SEO plan for a client, and they are generally tasked with doing more of the strategic and more of the tactical side of the job. 

Also they may evaluate and recommend changes to the SEO strategy based on data and analytics.

SEO strategists can expect to make anywhere from $47K – $100K a year, and need to have;  3 – 5 years experience on average.

Here are some common tasks they perform:

  • Perform Competitor analysis
  • Perform Keyword analysis based on sales funnel and buyer’s journey
  • Audit and fix technical SEO errors (HTML and CSS knowledge is a must)
  • Monitor Implementation of backlinks
  • Report and analyze SEO KPIs

I would recommend this position for anyone who is strategic and loves data.

4. SEO Manager 

Okay, so for an SEO Manager this is often the most confused position.

I’ve seen companies post job postings where they are asking for a manager but provide compensation that is comparable to an SEO specialist.

So to set the record straight: an SEO Manager is a senior level role ( 5 – 7 years experience) and should be making anywhere from $80k – $120K a year, but depending on the size and level of responsibility they should be making more.

At some companies you may be the only SEO on their team, while at larger companies you may be working under a director or head of SEO. 

So definitely make sure you ask for compensation that is comparable to what you would be doing.

Here are some typical task they perform:

  • Manages companies SEO Initiatives
  • Fix and audits Technical SEO errors ( HTML, CSS and Javascript knowledge is a must)
  • Perform Competitor analysis
  • Perform Keyword research and analysis
  • Build backlinks
  • Record and analyze SEO data
  • Manage a team of SEO specialists and or content writers

If you are a people person, and enjoy leading then I would recommend becoming a manager.

5. SEO Director 

An SEO director is essentially the same role as an SEO Manager, but this is more of a role at larger companies where you may be responsible for a large team of SEO specialists, analysts, strategists and content writers.

Again, I’ve seen a lot of confusion on job postings on what this role actually entails, as I mention this role is more of a coordinator role with a lot of decision making power.

So compensation should match that; an SEO director typically makes anywhere from ($100k – $150K)

Here are a few key responsibilities for this role:

  • Headlines SEO initiatives
  • Fix and audits Technical SEO errors ( HTML, CSS and Javascript knowledge is a must)
  • Perform Competitor analysis
  • Performs Keyword research and analysis
  • Build backlinks
  • Record and analyze SEO KPIs
  • Manage a team of SEO Specialists, analysts, and or content writers

This position is typically a senior level role and may require ( 6 – 8 years experience).

Get your first SEO job

I hope this post helps you better distinguish between each type of SEO job you see. 

This will ensure that you know what to expect so you can be adequately paid for your services.

If you are interested in receiving further career coaching; enter your name and Email in the contact form below, and I will follow up with you with coaching details.

Also for signing up, you will receive a free resume, and cover letter template that you can modify to apply for your jobs.

Till next time!


 


 

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