How to Get Started
as an SEO Manager

Refine Your Skills and Remain Relevant

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a way for companies to bring organic traffic to their websites. Businesses use keywords and search engine analytics to ensure that their website is one of the top results on search engines like Google.

A higher search engine ranking is crucial because it generates traffic, leading to better digital marketing. As an SEO manager, you’ll implement SEO strategies that enhance your client’s presence on search engines. Read below to learn how to become an SEO manager in 2021.

What Is an SEO Manager?

An SEO manager is a professional responsible for planning and facilitating SEO strategies. They help organizations increase their organic search rankings. In simple terms, an SEO manager is in charge of helping their clients generate user traffic to their site. SEO managers can find careers in tech, advertising, and entertainment.

How Does an SEO Manager Relate to Data Science?

An SEO manager uses data science to gather insights that improve an SEO campaign. The main goal is to use data analytics to find patterns in web user behavior and market trends. Data science involves planning, analyzing, and cleaning data before drawing a relevant conclusion.

Data science is an essential area of knowledge for SEO managers. It facilitates keyword research and digital marketing campaigns and helps SEO managers understand buyer preferences. SEO managers can also use data science to delve deeper into indexing, response errors, and site traffic.

How Long Does It Take to Become an SEO Manager?

It takes around four years to become an SEO manager. A bachelor’s degree is necessary to pursue a career in SEO management, and most programs take four years. Any degrees, certifications, and courses you choose to pursue may add additional time to your career path.

Aspiring SEO professionals should consider a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing, Computer Science, Information Technology, or Business Administrations. Some SEO professionals opt for a different education pathway. You can attend data science coding boot camps and take short-term online courses.

Where to Study SEO Management

You can study SEO management at a university, at a community college, or in an online program like a bootcamp. If you are a recent high school graduate, then pursuing a degree is the logical first step. You’ll spend time learning essential foundational SEO skills. Afterward, you can also pursue other online courses in subjects like data science.

You can also opt to further your technical SEO skills through coding bootcamps or higher degrees. The market is competitive and ever-changing, which means SEO training is continuous. You can even go further by acquiring certifications to maintain relevance in the field.

Below is an overview of the education pathway to becoming an SEO manager.

SEO Management Community Colleges

Community colleges are an excellent way to transition into university. They work well for students who can’t afford university tuition or those already working. A community college education takes two years and you’ll graduate with an associate degree.

Associate degree holders have the opportunity to transfer to a traditional university and complete the final two years of a bachelor’s degree. You can study computer science, business administration, or other relevant courses. Keep in mind that an associate degree can only get you an entry-level job as an SEO manager.

SEO Management Universities

University education is an essential part of becoming an SEO manager. A Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Information Technology, Marketing, or Business Administration has an affiliation to SEO strategies.

However, as you select a degree program, you need to look for opportunities to major in SEO-related fields. Some degrees offer courses or concentrations in content marketing, SEO strategies, Google Analytics, consumer behavior, and social media marketing.

Working SEO professionals can also enroll in university for a master’s degree or doctorate. Remember, the higher the education level, the higher the SEO manager salary. Modern technology also offers opportunities to pursue degrees completely remotely.

SEO Management Coding Bootcamps

Online coding bootcamps are perfect for anyone who needs to acquire extensive information within a short period. For example, a boot camp can equip an SEO specialist with technical SEO skills.

You will learn coding, keyword research, Google Analytics, and how to maximize search engines.

With the rise in demand for tech-savvy employees, coding boot camps have been increasing in popularity. Bootcamps courses perfect for professionals and recent graduates looking to hone their SEO skills. Bootcamp programs generally take a couple of weeks to a few months to complete.

SEO Management Online Courses

Online courses allow SEO professionals to improve their skills through short-term SEO training. They can offer a baseline of information for beginners or a refresher for professionals. Some great courses include SEMRush SEO Toolkit, Coursera’s SEO specialization, and SEO training from Hubspot.

How to Become an SEO Manager A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Become an SEO Manager A Step-by-Step Guide

The process of becoming an SEO manager is straightforward. You will need to get an education, start with an entry-level job, and work your way to a management position. Most SEO professionals will enroll in coding bootcamps, undertake online courses, and gain certification to become high-level SEO specialists.

Below is a step-by-step guide on how to become an SEO manager.

Get an education

Education is paramount if you want to become an SEO manager. You can start by pursuing a bachelor’s degree, which is the minimum education requirement for this job description. However, some people enroll in a community college and combine that education with bootcamp experience.

Find an entry-level job

You’ll need the experience to thrive as an SEO manager. Find a fitting entry-level job or pursue an internship. These positions allow you to gain real-life work experiences while looking for better opportunities. They are also great places to create professional networks and connections.

Hone your skills in a bootcamp

Bootcamps might seem challenging, but they are the best short-term method to acquire expertise. Find a coding bootcamp that prioritizes SEO strategies and enhances your technical SEO skills. Alternatively, you can pursue online SEO courses.

Get a job

The main goal of learning how to become an SEO manager is to get a job. Therefore, once you are confident in your digital marketing and SEO skills, you can apply for as many jobs as possible. You don’t need many years of experience because SEO is still fairly new.

Gain certification

Certification isn’t mandatory, but it can improve your clientele and solidify your credibility as an SEO manager. There are several professional certification resources. Enroll in certification programs that focus on SEO implementation.

Entry-Level SEO Manager Job Requirements

Marketing companies often reserve entry-level jobs for recent graduates and interns. Entry-level SEO managers conduct keyword research, monitor traffic, focus on content marketing, and support the digital marketing team.

Employers also look for experience in search engine marketing (SEM). You need to understand the basic SEO skills and expertise in popular keyword tools. Many SEO managers start out in marketing or content writing departments.

SEO Manager Salary and Job Outlook

The job outlook for SEO managers in the United States is quite impressive. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts a six percent growth rate between 2019 and 2029 for managers in advertising, promotions, and marketing. This means there will be many more job opportunities in the next decade.

However, the salary for an SEO manager varies depending on your rank. PayScale indicates that the average SEO manager salary is $71,136 per year. PayScale also reports that experience SEO managers can earn an average salary of $85,089.

Example SEO Manager Job Interview Questions

  • What is link building, and why is it essential?
  • What is your preferred tool for engaging in keyword research? Which SEO strategies would you employ to ensure SEO success?
  • How many years of experience do you have in SEO implementation?
  • How do you conduct keyword research?

What Does an SEO Manager Do?

An SEO manager is in charge of assessing data, conducting keyword research, creating SEO strategies, and much more. An SEO manager is the backbone of the digital marketing team. Below are a few of the crucial roles for an SEO manager.

Performs Keyword Research

Keyword research means selecting appropriate keywords that help you reach your target audience. As an SEO manager, you will determine the keyword popularity, difficulty, and search intent. Once you settle on the right keywords, you will introduce them organically into your content. Using strategic keywords can increase website traffic tremendously.

Conducts Link Building

Using backlinks is a popular way of increasing website traffic. SEO professionals develop genuine backlinks on the client’s site from reputable websites to increase ranking. Search engines use backlinks to enhance the search algorithm. Link building makes your site visible for search engine crawlers.

Creates Content Marketing Strategies

Apart from creating SEO-rich content, SEO managers play a crucial role in content marketing. Marketing involves sharing blog posts, social media posts, and videos to generate traffic to the client’s website. The content isn’t promotional, but it can evoke curiosity amongst Internet users. These links will lead them to the website.

Reviews Analytics

Analytics are essential in implementing page SEO. The results explain the page visits, bounce rates, conversions, and link-building progress. These analytics help SEO managers make informed decisions on the appropriate SEO strategies for the client.

Essential SEO Manager Skills and Certifications

Essential SEO Manager Skills and Certifications

Learning how to become an SEO manager also requires several skills. Technical SEO skills, such as link building, page SEO management, and analytical skills, will turn you into an SEO expert. These skills can help you negotiate a better SEO manager salary and attract more clients.

Another way to solidify your presence as an SEO manager is through certifications. An SEO certification involves undertaking short-term SEO training with relevant certification organizations. These can take three to six months. You also need to renew your certification every few years.
Read on to discover a list of skills and certifications that will help you stand out as an SEO manager.

SEO Management Skills

Keyword Optimization

There are several keyword optimization tools in the market. You need to know how to use these tools for SEO success. Keyword optimization skills help you find the right keywords to make our client’s website visible.

Insight Analysis

Although the digital marketing team is responsible for keeping tabs on the website performance, the SEO manager is in charge. You need to have practical skills in Google Analytics, such as traffic, backlink performance, and bounce rates. Knowledge of KPIs will also make work easier for an SEO manager.

Information Technology

SEO relies on information technology. A skilled SEO specialist has experience in using programming software for SEO success. Knowing programming languages like Python, HTML, and CSS will also separate you from other SEO professionals. Luckily, you can learn how to use the programming languages through online courses.

SEO Management Certifications

SEMrush Academy Certification

SEMrush offers a broad range of SEO certification courses. These certifications can help you maintain relevance in the industry. You can start with the SEO fundamentals exams or content marketing course, which both lay the foundation for SEO skills. The courses are free, but you’ll have to sit for an exam at the end of the SEO training.

Advanced Google Analytics Certification

The Google Analytics Academy offers several analytics courses. The courses cover data collection and analysis, processing, content marketing, reports, and incorporating customer ads. Each SEO course lasts for four or six hours. At the end of each SEO course, you will receive a Google Analytics IQ certification. The SEO courses are free.

Reasons to Become an SEO Manager in 2021

This year is the best time to become an SEO manager. Consumers are looking for information and purchasing goods online more than ever. More organizations are switching to digital marketing, which means the demand for SEO managers is increasing.

You also have the option to work as a freelancer or seek permanent employment. There’s a lot of employment freedom for SEO managers. If you’re interested in a lucrative position in digital marketing, try becoming an SEO manager.

SEO Manager FAQ

What skills define a skilled SEO manager?

You need to be tech-savvy, analytical, and outstanding in content creation. SEO managers create blog posts, social media posts, and videos. You need skills in all these areas.

How long does it take to become an SEO manager?

It might take up to six years, depending on your education pathway. However, the minimum education requirement for an SEO expert is a bachelor’s degree.

Why should I become an SEO manager?

Working as an SEO manager comes with a lot of freedom. You can choose to work as a freelancer if permanent employment doesn’t appeal to you. Additionally, digital marketing is taking over the marketing industry. There are endless job opportunities in the field.

Why do I need data science knowledge?

Data science makes SEO data collection effortless because it can help you discover more about your target audience and business insights. Data analysis is a big part of SEO.

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