In this digital world where every website is struggling to get more traffic and improve its search engine page rankings, SEO is an absolutely important tool.
Without SEO, there will be no organic traffic, which is the main source of traffic for any website.
A website or blog cannot survive on the web if there is no organic traffic. That is why SEO experts and SEO specialists are so much in demand these days.
Even when artificial intelligence is taking over in the modern world, the demand for an SEO specialist is still high.
But how much do we really know about them?
In this article, we are discussing all that you need to know about SEO specialists. But first, let us start with the basic question.
What Is An SEO Specialist?
A search engine optimization or SEO specialist is someone whose main task is to optimize a website continuously by improving its rankings in search engine results.
He does that by analyzing and reviewing different kinds of changes to a website and then finally implementing the ones that he seems fit for the optimization of the website.
In short, an SEO specialist is someone whose job is to make sure that your website shows up at the top position in search engine results.
Earlier, SEO specialists did not really require a lot of skills to function as search engine optimization was not a tough job. But now the entire scenario has changed. An SEO specialist these days has to have keen decision-making abilities and should be able to prioritize what kind of content would go on the website.
The phrase ‘content is king’ is truer than ever before now, because Google’s algorithms are placing more and more importance on high-quality content that is rich in keywords.
There are lots of factors actually that determine the search engine rankings of your website. The job of an SEO specialist is to work closely on all those factors. Previously, making a few changes in a website and scattering few links on the internet was all SEO specialists would do.
But that is nowhere close to sufficient now. An SEO Specialist today has to be on the web continuously and spot new trends and newer and more effective ways to get traffic to the website. The SEO specialist has to be aware of all the factors that give birth to new trends and implement the factors properly.
Factors like whether the PPC advertising is performing or not, how to make a webpage rank, what all to go off the page to make a webpage rank, how content marketing works, why is video SEO such an emerging trend, etc. should be known to an SEO specialist. That is not where his job ends.
He has to have in-depth knowledge about all these factors and also implement them constantly on the website he is working on.
SEO Specialist Skills:
Understanding SEO and implementing it on a website is not child’s play. There are lots of skills an SEO expert should possess. The following are the basic skills that should be present in every SEO expert.
1. Problem-solving capabilities:
While implementing SEO there can be a lot of unforeseen problems that an SEO expert will face. Also, each website out there on the web is different from another, so they have different SEO requirements.
Understanding these problems sometimes, identifying them and then solving such problems is something that every SEO expert should know.
Researching correctly goes a long way in developing a website’s page ranking. Researching for new keywords, spotting new trends on the web and to research which ones actually work the best, are crucial for any SEO expert.
SEO is not a one-step job that can be done and expected results from. There are many aspects of it and is a long plan.
This plan is made by the SEO expert, based on the sequence of actions. Which steps to take first and which steps can wait are all decided by the SEO expert.
4. Analytical skills:
SEO is based on reports from data that is collected by researching on the web. The huge chunk of data that is collected needs to be analyzed well enough to know which strategies should be implemented and which all should be kept for future sake.
This analysis is done by the SEO expert. Hence, analytical skills are a must-have for any SEO expert.
5. Decision-making abilities:
The thing about SEO is that it is constantly changing. Hence an SEO expert does not have statistical data to follow and stick to.
An SEO expert should have prompt decision-making skills, wherein he should be able to understand what a call of action should be in a particular situation.
6. Should be flexible enough:
SEO is constantly changing. Also, each website has different SEO strategies.
In such a scenario, an SEO expert should be able to fit in all kinds of strategies and should be ready to chalk out new plans and strategies if the previous ones did not work out somehow.
At any given moment, an SEO expert should be able to quickly plan and switch strategies for the website.
SEO Specialist Salary:
An SEO specialist’s salary depends on a lot of factors, just like salaries of any other professionals. The city he is working in, his years of experience, what all skills he possesses and such factors.
On average, an SEO specialist earns about 1.82 lacs in a year, after calculating basic salary, bonuses, and profit sharing.
Technical SEO Skills an SEO Professional Should Have
Apart from the basic skills that we have already mentioned, an SEO expert should possess technical skills as well.
Since SEO is a highly skilled job, one cannot survive here without having proper technical knowledge and skills. Here are some of the basic technical skills that every SEO professional should possess.
1. HTML coding:
Every SEO expert should possess knowledge and skills in HTML coding. Although just having experience and skills in HTML coding is not enough to thrive in the job, but it is one of the most basic requirements.
Even though SEO is not constant and is always changing and has evolved a lot from just being about keywords and linking, but the basic idea remains the same.
The sites that are rich in SEO and have high page rankings on search engine results are all built in a certain way, that is, they all follow the exact guidelines of search engines.
So an SEO expert should know how to build and manage content in the highly competitive environment of the internet.
2. Experience in web hosting:
If you want to build a website that would rank high on search engines, a very important factor is the web hosting provider you are choosing.
If you do not choose a good quality web hosting provider, your website might have a higher downtime. Downtime means the time duration for which your website remains inaccessible because of problems with the hosting server.
Though 100% uptime does not exist, you will want your website to be accessible for as long as possible. During downtime, since nobody can access your website, the page views and traffic falls down significantly.
The other thing that an SEO expert should be familiar with is the loading speed of the website. Google’s algorithms give higher ranking to websites that have a loading speed of 2 seconds or less than it.
While loading speed of a website depends on a lot of factors, your hosting server is one of the reasons. So it is extremely important for an SEO expert to have working knowledge and experience in web hosting so that he is able to combat these unforeseen problems.
The other factors that are associated with web hosting like uploading files and modifying the present content, changing the website’s settings, etc. should also be known to an SEO expert.
Doing all these does not mean that the SEO expert will be responsible for maintaining the website but there are going to be situations in running a website where a small problem might need a quick fix solution. That is where the SEO expert’s role comes into play.
3. Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Excel:
When you are an SEO expert, you have to research for a lot of data and then you have to deal with this data that you have collected. While you might find lots of high-end tools to help you manage this data and keep track of it, the most basic knowledge you should have is of Microsoft Excel.
Working knowledge of Microsoft Excel will help you manage your data better because you have to work with a huge chunk of data. So when you know about the functionalities of Microsoft Excel, it can help you go a long way.
If you thought Microsoft Excel was only needed for accounting needs and creating budget plans, you were wrong. In SEO, you need Microsoft Excel to be able to sort out, filter, prioritize and then group the data according to different categories so that it becomes easy for you to find specific information in the huge chunks of data that you have collected.
A more in-depth look into your data managed on Excel will help you to even identify trends, certain exceptions, and repeated occurrences and also to manipulate texts, and even to compare different data streams. All these aspects will help the SEO expert when they are analyzing the data they have collected.
4. If an SEO expert has programming skills, it is going to be very fruitful for them:
All the other technical skills mentioned here are the necessary skills an SEO expert must possess.
PHP is now one of the most stable programming languages to develop a website. When you integrate PHP in HTML code, it gives you access to huge data, and then encrypt data, automatically generate files and a lot more.
But most importantly these programming languages help to make a website more creative, useful and more accessible by users. PHP allows the website to search different kinds of content to users based on their IP address, browser, and other characteristics. So in a way, this helps to serve personalized content to users.
When an SEO expert has a working knowledge about such programming languages, his growth is inevitable.
After having known all about the work of an SEO expert, we can safely say that it is not as easy as it might seem to be.
An SEO expert needs to be constantly on the go, spotting new trends, collecting data, analyzing data and making reports based on that analysis and then implementing all of it on the website to optimize it so that, its page rankings are constantly improving.