How to Become an SEO Manager
SEO (search engine optimisation) management involves improving the search engine ranking of a website through keyword research, link building and more, primarily on Google search. Whether you’re after a robust full-time career or an exciting freelance lifestyle, becoming an SEO manager is a great career option.
What Qualifications Do You Need to Be an SEO Manager?
If you’re looking to land a full-time job in SEO marketing, it’s worth researching the courses available to you.
Most SEO managers have a bachelor’s degree in a field such as Digital Marketing, IT and E-Commerce or a business-related degree. Although this isn’t always necessary, degrees in this area could give you a solid foundation to build on.
Specialised Digital Marketing courses can give you a great overview of SEO strategy and content marketing. However, you may find that prior knowledge in marketing, web design or business will help you to get the most out of these courses.
Lastly, although a knowledge of social media isn’t a core part of SEO, having a good social strategy to go alongside your SEO practises can be an excellent way to drive up engagement. With this in mind, a course in Social Media can help you truly step up to become an SEO expert.
As a Beginner, Where Should I Start in SEO Management?
First up, you should start your journey towards becoming an SEO expert. One of the best ways to learn SEO is through hands-on experience, for which you can launch your own website or an SEO campaign for family, friends or a charity.
You can also brush up on your know-how by reading SEO blogs like Moz or the Official Google Webmaster Central Blog, traversing LinkedIn for the latest developments in the SEO industry or using SEO tools like SEMRush to develop your keyword research and backlinking skills. As you start to gather SEO expertise, you will soon see whether this career is for you.
Hackathons and internships are also some fantastic ways to develop a real-world understanding of SEO best practises while making you a more desirable candidate in the eyes of employers. During these industry events, participants undertake a variety of SEO tasks and coding challenges while competing with others.
Skill Set Required for an SEO Manager
SEO management is a varied role that requires an equally varied skill set. To be a truly effective SEO manager/marketer, you need to possess diverse skills and feel confident in a number of disciplines, from IT and data analysis to stakeholder management and basic psychology.
What Does an SEO Manager Do?
SEO managers help websites attract more traffic through analysing competitors’ SEO, compiling reports through Google Analytics and creating relevant content. You will conduct keyword research while also being expected to stay abreast of the latest developments to the Google algorithm. Your focus will primarily be on organic search, but you will also work on paid search marketing efforts.
As an SEO consultant, you will identify strategies, techniques and tactics to increase the number of website visitors and obtain a higher search engine ranking for your clients. You can gain the skills needed to understand complicated data sets through courses in Google Analytics and other analytics courses.
Typical Duties for an SEO Manager
Working in the field of SEO marketing is likely to keep you on your toes as you take on many different tasks at once, such as:
Churning out content and getting it out for the public to consume makes up a large portion of SEO marketing. It’s also instrumental to ranking highly and getting noticed, which is why every SEO manager needs to be knowledgeable and tactical in this area. You will need to learn a wealth of skills including how to write snippets, title tags, and how search engines work.
Getting content out and hoping for the best doesn’t usually cut it. Monitoring the performance of your content and adjusting your SEO strategy to what’s proven to work is just as (if not more) important. You may work alongside a marketing team on this aspect of search engine marketing. Alternatively, in smaller agencies, you may work alone to boost organic traffic.
Drive organic and pay-per-click (PPC) traffic to websites
Content production and analysis won’t be worth much if no one’s visiting your website. Every SEO manager understands the importance of PPC advertising in getting their content and product noticed, especially when starting out.
Popular Career Pathways for SEO Managers
SEO management is a highly versatile career pathway and. You could become an in-house SEO specialist working for a small business or large corporation or could work full-time at a digital marketing agency managing SEO campaigns for numerous clients.
The SEO industry also gives you room to freelance, working as a one-person agency with a variety of clients, or you could expand into SEM if you become qualified in Google Adwords through a Digital Marketing course. When you’ve completed your SEO training and are comfortable implementing marketing strategies, you may want to consider going it alone. The truth is that you can excel in this career as a sole trader and many SEO professionals choose this option.
Starting off as an SEO manager could lead you down the path of becoming a Marketing Manager or the head of the SEO team, or even into an adjacent role such as a Copywriter or Social Media Manager, it could be worth exploring digital marketing courses to further your skillset.
Staying up to date with the fundamentals of the industry will help you in a variety of career paths. With that in mind, it’s always wise to sharpen your SEO expertise.