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What do you need to work in SEO?

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Despite being a core part of most business’ digital marketing efforts, the question ‘what is SEO?’ is Googled thousands of times every month.

But whether you’re aware of the crucial importance of SEO for businesses, or you’re completely unsure what we mean by Search Engine Optimisation, it’s worth assessing whether a career in SEO could be for you – especially if you’re interested in pursuing marketing graduate jobs.

What is SEO? 🤔

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation, it’s the process of getting website traffic from the “free,” “organic,” “editorial” or “natural” search results on search engines – Search Engine Land

Why work in SEO? 💭

Why choose a career in SEO? Here’s a few reasons why you should consider working in SEO.


If you like words and write well, SEO is the job for you – you’ll learn how to write not just for humans but also for search engines!


If you love learning new skills, then working in search engine optimisation would definitely suit you – to stay up-to-date and relevant in the industry you must have a curiosity for knowledge because you will never stop learning in this ever-changing digital space.


You can become an expert in your field – there are so many blogs and e-learning tools out there, that if you apply yourself you can become an SEO expert. In the meantime, while looking for jobs in SEO, take a look at these free online courses to help you upskill.


Opportunities to work either in-house within a range of different industries, or within an SEO or digital agency, depending on your preferences.


If you’re a real techie and like data then you should consider a career in SEO, this job role requires you to be analytical, using various tools to measure the results of your hard work.


Many people might think that an SEO specialist is just stuck behind a computer screen with no communication with other humans… Well you’re wrong. Part of the job is digital PR; reaching out to businesses and other blog writers to create a link building strategy.


SEO is a very varied career choice, as well as writing, numbers & communication, a good SEO specialist will also have a creative eye, in order to evaluate a website and improve user experience.

How to get a job in SEO ?

As the Customer Success Manager for Botify, a leading SEO application for businesses, Guy Swanborough is well placed to talk about the benefits of SEO graduate jobs.

Guy talks us through what you need to work in SEO, the benefits of SEO and digital marketing jobs for graduates, and how to get into Search Engine Optimisation as a career.


What does an SEO company do, and why do companies need SEO services?

SEO (or Search Engine Optimisation) companies, agencies and tool providers are all focused on achieving the same thing, helping businesses to perform better in organic search results.

If a business operates within the digital landscape, chances are it will need to make itself known to potential customers, usually by ranking on the first page of a Google result.

This is because such a high majority of people these days use Google to research any topics of interest, such as holidays, products, jobs or hobbies (to name a few).

However, ranking on the first page of Google is not a given for any company, as there are quite a wide variety of factors which can affect this – with certain results being incredibly competitive.

This is why a business would need to consider SEO, as performing well in search can lead to a high number of visitors, which in turn would convert to sales (and revenue).

And given that more and more companies are focusing on their online presence, there is a higher and higher demand for good SEO people to help them.

This is where expert SEO services become essential. Businesses need SEO to improve their search performance, attract a higher number of visitors, and ultimately convert them into sales and revenue.


What are some of the different job roles in SEO?

Due to the number of factors which can affect SEO, there is in essence a chance to specialise in a particular field. The larger and more competitive the website, the more specialised the role, whereas with smaller, less competitive industries, having a more general knowledge of each may be more beneficial.

Generally, SEO can be split into 2 core disciplines – On-site (referring to anything and everything to do with the business’ own website) and Off-site (any interactions of other websites with the business’ website) SEO.

On-site SEO can then be further split into Content and Technical, with Content SEO’s being highly proficient copywriters, which not only produce favourable writing for users, but is good for search engine algorithms as well.

Technical SEOs love analysis and delve into data such as internal linking, loading speeds, HTML tags, JavaScript and a load of other technicalities which may be impacting performance.

Check out our job vacancies in technology and digital.

Off-site SEO requires someone with great PR skills, who can generate interest (ie backlinks) to the business in other areas of the web!

Looking to persue a career in this sector? Take a look at the PR jobs we have on offer.


Is it possible to work in SEO if you are not highly technical?

Absolutely – there are a number of SEO roles out there which do not require high levels of data crunching but would require a good knowledge of the basic concepts.

Copywriters and PR individuals are great entry points into non-technical SEO graduate jobs, as they will naturally come to discover how their work impacts it, and in turn, can focus their efforts on expanding their SEO knowledge over time.

More strategic thinkers could develop plans for a business, based on industry insights, experience and successes with other clients.

And lastly, for the highly organised among us, simply coordinating the efforts and workloads of multiple SEO campaigns/projects simultaneously, in an agency environment, for example, is also highly desired.


What skills are best suited to jobs in SEO?

I’d have to say an ability to adapt to change, along with a willingness to learn.

Simply because SEO is highly dynamic, as the evolution of technology and search engines is constantly evolving, meaning that people in the industry have to adapt to what are the most popular/convenient methods of search, and any implications that they incur.

Recently, to people working in the industry, this has included things like optimising for mobile devices, getting pages to load faster or curating the quality of website content.


How can you get into SEO as a career?

SEO falls under the umbrella of Digital Marketing within most educational offerings, so picking any degree/diploma on this subject would give you a solid base to work with.

Additionally, involvement with web design/development would also come with exposure to SEO, perhaps with a better weighting towards the more technical aspects.

Or, like me, you could stumble into it – starting with some copywriting, and then through continual self-development become better at it, as there is a literal ocean of knowledge available online.

If you are wondering about how to get a job in SEO, most online businesses are on the lookout for eager SEOs, so either reach out to them directly or get to know a Give A Grad A Go Consultant and they will line you up with some great opportunities directly!


What advice would you give to someone wanting to work in SEO?

Go for it! SEO is such a multifaceted, multidisciplinary field of work to get into, that can open doors to so many other career opportunities down the line.

It appeals to both creative or analytical people alike, applies from the smallest startup to the largest high street/e-commerce retailers on earth, and stays exciting through constant innovation.

SEO terms list

If you are considering working in SEO, it is a good idea to familiarise yourself with some of the top SEO terms that are widely used in the industry (choose a few words from the SEO terms list below):


  • Analytics
  • AMP (accelerated mobile pages)
  • Algorithms
  • Alt tags
  • Anchor text
  • Backlinks
  • Black hat SEO techniques
  • Bot
  • Bounce rate
  • Browser
  • Cache
  • Canonical tags
  • Citations
  • Click-through rate
  • Conversion rate
  • Crawling and crawl budget
  • CSS (Cascading Style Sheet)
  • DA (domain authority)
  • Domain name
  • Duplicate content
  • Engagement
  • Featured snippets
  • Follow and no-follow links
  • Google Search Console
  • Header tags – H1, H2, H3, H4
  • HTML
  • Inbound and outbound links
  • Indexing
  • Internal links
  • Image compression
  • Impressions
  • JavaScript
  • Keyword stuffing
  • Off-page and on-page SEO
  • Linkbait
  • Link building
  • Link volume
  • Meta tags: meta description, meta title and meta keywords
  • Natural linking
  • Organic search
  • PA (page authority)
  • Page rank
  • Paid search
  • Page speed
  • PPC (pay per click)
  • Redirection
  • Rich snippet
  • Robots.txt
  • Schema or structured data
  • Scroll depth
  • SEM (search engine marketing
  • SERPs (search engine results pages)
  • Sitemap
  • Spider
  • SSL certificate
  • Status codes: 404, 500, 302 etc.
  • Thin content
  • Thumbnails
  • Time on page
  • Traffic
  • URL
  • UTM parameter (urchin tracking module)
  • White hat SEO techniques
  • XML feed

Whether you’re a student deciding on your ideal career, a recent grad applying for graduate jobs, or a professional looking for a career move, SEO is one of the most exciting career choices within the digital marketing space.

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