If you are looking for a new and exciting career to join, then you may want to join SEO.
Now is the perfect time to join!
In this guide, I am going to walk you through what is an SEO specialist.
Before we get into how to become a specialist, let’s go over what is SEO worth joining:
Now let’s explore what an SEO specialist is
What is an SEO Specialist
An SEO specialist is a person who specializes in helping businesses rank their website on the top of search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. The specialist does this by “optimizing” or modifying the website’s pages in order to help search engines easily find, crawl, index and display the content when someone searches for a specific question or topic. They can do this through technical modifications like adding or changing “meta tags”, or through creative means like writing content that is “keyword-rich” and more search engine friendly.
Read my post 5 typical SEO specialist task to learn more about what the job entails.
The reason why businesses will pay top dollar to someone who is an expert of this, is because traffic from search engines like Google, is extremely profitable and essentially free. As in business do not have to spend on ads for SEO, like they would for pay per click or social media ads. But that doesn’t mean it is an easy feat to get this traffic, because as you could imagine, everyone is vying for this lucrative placement. But if you are able to do this for a business, the rewards are immense. So again that is another great reason to learn how to become an SEO specialist.
Here are some common tasks that an SEO specialist may be asked to perform:
1.Perform Keyword Research
The first task an SEO specialist may be asked to do is to conduct keyword research. This involves looking into which words people are using to search for your service or offering on the internet, and determining which ones would be best suited for your clients’ website or blog.
It can be difficult to determine which keywords to target, but a good way to get started is by conducting a search for your niche on Google. I typically use a combination of Google’s “Auto Suggest”, the “People Also Know” section and the “Related searches section”.
You can also use keyword research tools like Google keyword planner, Ahrefs, SEMrush and Moz, but they are not required to do your job well.
In my experience, while at an agency I didn’t really do a lot of research, but if you freelance and have multiple clients then you may be more likely to do research. Regarding in-house roles, it is more an initial thing you do, not necessarily on-going.
2. Write Title Tags, Meta Descriptions and Alt text
This task by far was one of the most that I completed during my time at an agency, for every new webpage we created I had to come up with a Title tag, Meta description, and a description for the images (Alt text). Also there were times where I had to rewrite them because they weren’t performing well in the search results.
Quick tip: You definitely wanted to use SEO based copywriting methods.
Here are some examples of what I mean:
- Using questions and hooks
- Highlighting benefits and not features
- Placing main keywords as close to the beginning of the tag
The last method can also be referred to as “front-loading” .
My supervisor told me that when it comes to getting clicks, if you have two search results that look nearly identical, how does the user pick which one to go with?
And what he told me was they’re going to pick the one where there question or keyword is closest to the beginning of the title and description, so from that point forward I always make sure to front-load my keywords.
While there is not data to support this here’s what Kendall Copywriting has to say about this:
“Put your key details at the front and your readers are more likely to discover the key messages – and less likely to get bored.” (Kendall Copywriting)
3. Write Schema Markup
So schema is definitely a hot topic in today’s SEO field and I can definitely say knowing how to write schema is very impressive to recruiters. The reason being is that you are going to be asked to write a lot of it.
Now, I know there are a lot of different types of schema markup, but honestly the only schema I really had to write was FAQ schema, but there were times where I had to write other types of schema like local business, medical business, heck even review schema once or twice.
So, if you’re an SEO specialist you can pretty much bet you’ll be asked to write schema.
Here’s another small tip: you don’t have to code it by hand, you can just use a schema generator such as the one.
You will be amazed at how many people in the SEO field don’t know that you can do this, even though it can easily be accessed from Google… I digress.
4. Pull Google Search Console data and keyword rankings
So what I mean by “pull” is you need to be able to interpret a client’s search rankings. So being able to tell a client how many clicks they got, how many impressions they had, and most importantly where the keywords are ranking.
Now, in my particular instance I wasn’t client facing, so I didn’t meet with clients but if you do you will definitely have to be able to explain this information to them so they understand.
You are definitely going to get questions like “Why is my click through rate so low” or my favorite “Why am I not on page 1 ?”. So you definitely want to get in the practice of being able to read this data and explain this to clients in a way they understand.
5. Work with Web Developers, Content Marketers and management
All right so number five, and I have to say my favorite one, is working with web developers and content marketers. As a part of being a specialist, you will definitely be asked to diagnose technical issues and report them to developers. These could be things like slow site speed, poor navigation, broken links, or poor indexing.
For content marketers, you will definitely have to communicate keyword research to them and work with them to follow each client’s particular content strategy.
There may even times where you may be asked to outright be an SEO content writer where you are responsible for helping to write and research content ideas.
I think this is great because as an SEO specialist you have to be both versed in technical capabilities, but also creative thinking.
Also, I think worth mentioning is that you also have to be well-versed in data analytics, and story telling.
In your role, you are also going to be working with your Director or manager, and trust me they care about data very much.
Is SEO a good career
You may have heard about automation and worry if SEO will be dead or if it will still be profitable.
I know that you might be worried that if you invest your time and money into learning SEO and getting an entry-level job that it may not be what you expect.
I understand, I had the same thoughts when I first got into the field, but with the average entry-level SEO job paying $23 – $35 per hour it is worth joining the career path.
Also there is ZERO chance of automation because SEO requires creativity, data analyses, collaboration, and out-of-box thinking. No of which a computer can do. So as a current professional in the field and currently making over $100,00 a year from SEO I believe it is well worth your time joining.
For more information on wether or not SEO is worth pursing, read my how much do SEO specialist make guide.
Who should become an SEO Specialist
You should learn how to become an SEO specialist if you are someone who is a self-starter, data-driven, a good problem solver, and loves to read and write.
Unlike paid marketing, SEO is more about researching, analyzing data and writing content.
Another good reason to become an SEO specialist is because all the jobs are in high demand.
Companies of just about any niche need someone to help them grow their traffic on Google.
Watch the video below for more information on what makes someone a good SEO specialist:
What knowledge do you need to become an SEO specialist
To become an SEO Specialist you need a strong understanding of all three domains of SEO. On-Site, Off-Site, and Technical SEO. Also it is helpful for you to know what a search engine is and how they work.
Another thing you may be asked to do is data analysis. So a basic understanding of Google Search Console, Google Analytics and Tag Manager may be helpful as well!
Get Your SEO Career Starter Pack
I remember when I was becoming an SEO specialist, and how confusing everything was to learn.
So I understand if right now all this information is a bit overwhelming.
To help you unpack the ins and outs of the SEO profession, I would like to offer you a career mentorship opportunity, where I can coach you on how to get your first job in SEO from start to finish.
If you are interested in this opportunity, please leave your name and email in the form below and I will send you a cover letter, resume, and portfolio example that you can download to modify for your job.
Along the way through my emails, I will also send you an email with information on how to schedule a mentoring session with me.
Now I do want to preface that this opportunity is only for individuals looking to become a United States SEO Specialist and the reason being is I personally have only worked in this market so I can only give you information based on that market.
But nonetheless, if you are interested leave your information in the form below to get started!