SEO Specialist Salary Guide 2023 (2023)

Are you considering starting an SEO career or do you currently hold an SEO position? If you're looking to get into the field you'll probably want to know your earning potential, and if you're already in this field, knowing the market value of your position is crucial so you can negotiate effectively at job interviews or salary review meetings. . This knowledge is necessary, regardless of whether you work as a freelancer or in an internal team.

The salary of an SEO specialist varies by location, industry and experience. There can be big differences, but it's generally a high-paying field that gains recognition over time. This recognition will lead to increased demand for SEO specialists in all types of organizations and better compensation.

In this article, we compare the average salaries of SEO specialists based on various factors so that you have a clear guide. We will cover the following:

  1. What Does an SEO Specialist Do?
  2. SEO Specialist Salary by Location
  3. SEO Specialist Salary by Industry
  4. Salary as SEO specialist after many years of experience
  5. How to become an SEO specialist
  6. Next Steps

You can use the clickable menu to jump to each section. Let us begin!

1. What does an SEO specialist do?

An SEO specialist works to help their client's website rank high for relevant results on search engines like Google and Bing. This usually leads to increased website traffic, which creates an opportunity for more profit.

SEO specialists use various strategies to achieve high search engine rankings. This typically includesOnPage-SEO,OffPage-SEOand technical SEO. Most specialists are familiar with all three types, but some may only focus on one. They often perform tasks like keyword research for content, tracking website performance, and improving domain authority through link outreach.

An SEO specialist typically works within the marketing team but may also need to work with other teams such as development and product teams. The aim is to drive the company's growth and profits. The specific scope of your role generally depends on the overall organization of the marketing team.

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For example, working with an in-house SEO team can streamline your work as an SEO specialist, but being a one-person SEO team can yield more results.

Learn more about the role of an SEO specialist in this post:

2. SEO Specialist Salary by Location

Location can be an important factor in SEO specialist salary. This is due to the impact of factors such as the demand for an SEO specialist, the cost of living and local tax rates. An increase in the cost of living and local tax rate is more likely to result in a salary increase for the same position. So if you work for a company that adjusts wages based on location, you may be making less than your peers who live in a more expensive area.

This is worth considering before closing the wage gap; the cost of living can match them.

Let's compare the predictions for the average SEO specialist salary by location. All salaries are in United States Dollars (USD).

These numbers differ by city or state within a country. For example, according to Indeed, the average salary for an SEO specialist in California is60.736 $, which is relatively higher than the average salary of49.458 $in Wyoming. Although location is a very important factor in determining salary, these salaries also vary by industry and experience.

3. SEO Specialist Salary by Industry

The salary of an SEO specialist varies by industry due to the profit margins of some industries and the amount of SEO work they require. The size of the company is also important as a multinational company usually has more money to spend on SEO than a small company.

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Laut Glassdoor, the following industries pay more for SEO specialists.

  • Pharmacy and Biotechnology: $84,131
  • Human resources and staff: $79,021
  • Information Technology: $74,758
  • Management Consulting: $70,404
  • Media and Communications: $68,448

Even in these industries, wages are still low, so read the job description carefully and the estimated compensation and benefits.

4. SEO specialist salary after years of experience

Employers also consider the amount of relevant experience you have in a role or similar position before making an offer. In general, more years of experience require a higher salary.

This is what the average SEO specialist salary can look like based on years of experience.

Starting salary as SEO specialist

Entry-level SEO specialists typically require up to two years of experience. Typically, your employer expects you to do tasks like keyword research, site audit, on-page SEO, and have a solid understanding of analytics tools. You will learn a lot on the job.

Here is what the average starting salary for SEO specialists in the US looks like in general:

It's not a bad start, and these salaries tend to increase as you gain more experience.

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Mid-level SEO Specialist Salary

Mid-level SEO specialists typically require 2-5 years of experience. By this point, you should be able to work independently with SEO tools and implement and monitor SEO strategies. It has been difficult to find average salary figures for mid-level SEO specialists, but a reasonable estimate is between $50,000 and $60,000.

Senior SEO Specialist Salary

High-level positions are often among the highest-paying positions in a company. They require between 5 and 8 years of experience in SEO or SEO related roles.

At this stage, your employers expect you to have advanced SEO skills, drive SEO strategies and tactics for the company, and report SEO performance to clients and stakeholders. You're probably leading a team with a job title likeHead of SEO.

Here is the average salary for top-level SEO specialists in the US:

Performance bonuses that experienced SEO specialists receive can significantly increase these numbers for some companies.

5. How to become an SEO specialist

No four-year degree makes you an SEO specialist. SEO is always evolving, and a degree can become obsolete before you graduate.

However, when applying for jobs, employers often require a bachelor's degree in a related field such as marketing, communications, and business, or experience in a related position. Others may require a set amount of experience in the field.

(Video) How to Become an SEO Expert in 2023

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to becoming an SEO specialist, but these are important steps to get there.

Learn the basics of SEO

If you are new to SEO, learning the basics should be your first step. You must understand topics such as how search engine algorithms work and how to conduct keyword research. You can read various articles on the subject, but for a more intensive and in-depth approach, you should take courses, either paid orFree SEO Courses– or by attending a boot camp.

Take oneCourse Digital MarketingIt will not only give you the basics you need to be successful in SEO, but in digital marketing in general, making you more valuable to any business you join in the future.

The certificates you typically receive at the end of these programs show employers that you are familiar with SEO concepts. However, experience in this area is highly valued.

Create portfolio

Now that you've theoretically learned the concepts and techniques, it's time to get your hands dirty. Become familiar with using SEO tools like analytics software and keyword tools. Start a blog and apply the various strategies and techniques you've learned. After a while, this site can serve as your portfolio and you will have gained relevant experience.

Apply for internships

Now that you have hands-on experience, you can apply for internships with a digital marketing team or SEO agency. You will learn to work with people, which is an important aspect of being an SEO specialist, and with agencies in particular, you will learn the ins and outs of working with clients from different industries. In this way, you will gain a broader range of experience that will give you more confidence in your abilities.

Stay up to date with SEO trends

Remember that SEO is constantly evolving, so you need to keep up with the trends. Follow industry news, read SEO blogs, sign up for SEO newsletters, follow experts sharing information on their social media pages, listen to SEO podcasts, watch YouTube videos and actively participate in forums and communities.

(Video) How To Become an SEO Expert In 2023 | SEO Expert Tutorial | SEO For Beginners | Simplilearn

6. Next steps

Now that you know the different salaries for SEO specialists and how they vary by location, industry and experience, you can have realistic expectations. Be confident enough to ask about your worth in terms of skills and experience. Keep in mind that the salary of a freelance SEO specialist can differ significantly from the average figures depending on the number of projects they take on.

Earning potential is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing a career. This salary guide shows that an SEO specialist is a well-paying career with potential for growth.

If you want a hands-on introduction to digital marketing first, try thisFree 5-day short course. You may also be interested in the following articles:

  • What is CRM?
  • The definitive guide to digital marketing in B2B
  • What are the best entry-level digital marketing jobs?


How much does an SEO make in 2023? ›

How much does a SEO make? As of Feb 11, 2023, the average annual pay for a SEO in the United States is $64,023 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $30.78 an hour. This is the equivalent of $1,231/week or $5,335/month.

How much can you make as an SEO Specialist? ›

According to Edoxi's salary trend report, which forecasts job salaries in digital marketing over the next year, U.S.-based, entry level SEO specialists can expect a starting SEO salary of $35K, mid-career SEO specialists are likely to earn closer to $47K, and experienced SEO specialists will earn on average $65K in ...

What is the highest salary of SEO Specialist? ›

SEO Specialist salary in India ranges between ₹ 1.8 Lakhs to ₹ 8.0 Lakhs with an average annual salary of ₹ 3.7 Lakhs.

What is the basic salary of SEO? ›

Average ₹22,437 per month.

Is SEO a high paying job? ›

In the Digital Marketing domain, Along with the Digital Marketing salary, the salary in an SEO career is among the highest. This is because SEO-skilled professionals are in high demand across the globe. As per Glassdoor, the average salary of SEO Analysts is approximately US$69k per annum.

Will SEO exist in 5 years? ›

Yes, SEO will exist for the foreseeable future. Businesses rely on SEO to ensure their content appears in SERPs, even as algorithms and features adapt to users' needs. This won't change within the next handful of years.

Can I make a living doing SEO? ›

The simple answer is that SEO can be a great way to make a decent living, and provided you have the skills to scale an SEO practice, the sky's the limit. Nowadays, there are a lot of ways to make money online: from building an ecommerce website to creating a blog to promote products and services.

Is SEO analyst a stressful job? ›

It is the same with SEO-related jobs. However, it is not as stressful as IT or other programming-related jobs. Regardless of whether you're doing SEO in-house or for an agency or clients, however, your path to becoming an SEO specialist has to start with mastering the skills with help of an SEO Training Course.

Is SEO a long term career? ›

So, yes, SEO could be an amazing career choice today, especially if you're passionate about all Internet things. Keep in mind that you'll need to continue learning and mastering your skills all the time, as search engines keep tweaking their algorithms all the time.

Is SEO a difficult job? ›

SEO is not that hard to learn, but it can be confusing and overwhelming to get started. Learning SEO means learning about a long list of individual digital marketing strategies, which can feel a bit like adding new weapons to your arsenal as you learn how to wield them.

How much SEO earn monthly? ›

Average Rs 38,565 per month.

Is SEO still in demand? ›

SEO professionals are in high demand, as companies need search optimization in order to compete in most niches.

How much does an SEO Specialist earn per hour? ›

How much does a SEO Specialist make? As of Feb 24, 2023, the average annual pay for a SEO Specialist in the United States is $57,609 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $27.70 an hour.

What is the salary for 3 years SEO experience? ›

Average Annual Salary by Experience

Senior SEO Specialist salary in India with less than 3 year of experience to 9 years ranges from ₹ 2.8 Lakhs to ₹ 9.8 Lakhs with an average annual salary of ₹ 4.7 Lakhs based on 449 latest salaries. Are you underpaid?

Is SEO still relevant in 2023? ›

Yes, SEO is still important in 2023. SEO is the practice of improving the ranking of a website on search engines like Google. This is important because it can help to increase the visibility of a website, and make it more likely that people will find and visit the website.

Is SEO worth it in 2023? ›

If you are still finding yourself asking, “Is SEO worth it in 2023?” the answer is a resounding 'Yes. ' The process of adding keywords and metadata to your website will change with time, but the fact remains that SEO is still one of the best ways to get your site ranked higher in organic search.

What is the future of SEO in 2023? ›

In 2023, Page Speed Insights and Core Web Vitals will still be essential tools for monitoring and evaluating the speed and performance of websites. Alongside content quality, prioritizing page speed improvements is bound to pay off for businesses with increased keyword rankings for all of the web pages of their domain.

How much do SEO experts make freelance? ›

Average SEO Analyst salary in India is ₹ 2.9 Lakhs for experience between 1 years to 6 years SEO Analyst salary at India ranges between ₹ 2.0 Lakhs to ₹ 4.0 Lakhs. According to our estimates it is 16% more than the average SEO Analyst Salary in India.

What is the life of an SEO Specialist? ›

As an SEO specialist you'll identify strategies, techniques and tactics to increase the number of visitors to a website and obtain a high-ranking placement in the results page of search engines. By generating more leads for the business you'll open up new opportunities for driving growth and profit.

How many hours does an SEO work? ›

You'll also need to regularly update your sitemap when it changes dramatically. These things don't take much time, unless a problem emerges that you'll need to solve. Estimated Time: About three to 12 hours a week, depending on the size of your site and whether any problems arise.

What does a SEO Specialist do daily? ›

A search engine optimization (SEO) specialist improves website rankings on major search engines, such as Google, Yahoo! and Bing. The specialist ensures on-page optimization to produce relevant search results and a positive user experience, growing site traffic, lead volume and brand awareness.

How long does it take to master SEO? ›

Experts say it usually takes one to three months to learn the foundations of SEO and a year or more to master the practice fully. The length of time it takes to learn the basics of SEO depends upon several factors.

Does SEO require coding? ›

The short answer is: no, SEO typically doesn't require much (or any) hands-on coding. You can absolutely do a fine job of SEO without touching code.

What degrees are best for SEO? ›

There are no formal higher education programs specifically tailored to teaching SEO. However, SEO managers often hold a bachelor's degree in marketing or a related field. Keep reading to learn the step-by-step instructions for starting your career as an SEO manager. Earn a bachelor's degree in marketing.

How long does it take to rank with SEO? ›

According to, it can take anywhere from three to six months to rank on the first page of Google, assuming that you're writing good content and optimizing your website for search engines. If there's high competition or you haven't optimized your website, it may take six to 12 months to see results.

Is SEO a good career? ›

There is excellent growth potential in this practice. As you keep acquiring more skills and build on your business and communication skills, you can expect yourself to become a digital marketing manager over time. A career in SEO also opens up several opportunities in the freelancing space.

How much should I charge for SEO? ›

SEO charges in India are between INR 5000 and 25000 per month (60,000 - 3,00,000 a year).

What is the future of SEO in 2030? ›

The worldwide SEO Agencies Market is expected to grow at a booming CAGR of 2023-2030, rising from USD billion in 2023 to USD billion in 2030. It also shows the importance of the SEO Agencies Market main players in the sector, including their business overviews, financial summaries, and SWOT assessments..

Will SEO be replaced by AI? ›

AI may change the way SEO is done, but it is unlikely to replace the entire profession. While AI can automate certain aspects of SEO, such as keyword analysis and technical site audits, it still requires human expertise and creativity to develop and implement effective strategies.

What is replacing SEO? ›

Answer Engine Optimization to Replace Search Engine Optimization.

What is SEO paid difficulty? ›

The SEO Difficulty shows how difficult it is to achieve a ranking in organic search. The Paid Difficulty indicates how easy or difficult it is on a scale of 1 to 100 to place a Google ad in a highly visible position.

What is the highest paying job in 2023? ›

1. Anesthesiologists
  • Median annual salary: $208,000.
  • Industry: Health care.
  • Education needed: Doctorate degree.
Feb 1, 2023

Can SEO make you a millionaire? ›

Can SEO make you a millionaire? That depends entirely on your skills and ability to scale. The simple answer is that SEO can be a great way to make a decent living, and provided you have the skills to scale an SEO practice, the sky's the limit.

Is there a future for SEO? ›

AI will completely change SEO as we know it. From optimization to link building, it will significantly impact every aspect of SEO. As artificial intelligence (AI) becomes more sophisticated, search engine optimization will have to adapt.

What three jobs will be in demand in 2025? ›

A list of the most in-demand skills in the future
  • Data Science & Cloud Computing (Cloud computing goes hand in hand with data science, and cloud computing jobs range from architects and developers to data scientists)
  • Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML)
  • Big Data Science.
  • Digital Marketing & Strategy.
Apr 13, 2022

What are three common jobs that typically pay over $100000 a year? ›

Jobs that pay $100K a year typically require a bachelor's degree or higher.
Jobs that Pay 100K With 4 Years of School
  • Computer and Information Systems Manager. ...
  • Marketing Manager. ...
  • Sales Manager. ...
  • Human Resources Manager. ...
  • Purchasing Manager. ...
  • Air Traffic Controller. ...
  • Medical or Health Services Manager. ...
  • Computer Network Architect.
Aug 11, 2022

What jobs will not be in demand in 2030? ›

5 jobs that will disappear by 2030
  • Travel agent. It amazes me that a travel agent is still a job in 2020. ...
  • Taxi drivers. ...
  • Store cashiers. ...
  • Fast food cooks. ...
  • Administrative legal jobs.
May 30, 2022

Is it hard to get a job in SEO? ›

Is it hard to get into SEO expert? No, it's not. It's very easy to break into the SEO field. There is a wide range of career options to choose from and several affordable professional training courses to get you started.

Is SEO a stressful job? ›

It is the same with SEO-related jobs. However, it is not as stressful as IT or other programming-related jobs. Regardless of whether you're doing SEO in-house or for an agency or clients, however, your path to becoming an SEO specialist has to start with mastering the skills with help of an SEO Training Course.

How many hours do SEO specialists work? ›

SEO Specialists work to improve how well pages rank. They conduct keyword research and optimize on-page content on different projects to achieve this goal. The SEO Specialist role is full-time and remote. SEO Specialists work 40 hours per week with only 1 hour required overlap in Pacific Standard Time.


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