A Step-by-Step SEO Guide for Beginners to Kick Start a Career in SEO

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Aspiring to start a career in SEO, but stuck with how to proceed? Believe me, being into SEO content marketing from the past 5 years; I know the importance of SEO in every aspect of digital marketing. Be it the website content, blogs, social media marketing, or even email campaigns; SEO is king to all.

Almost every agency that owns a website, aims for reaching out to a large set of target audiences, and that is why they willingly invest in SEO.

With this, the need for well-trained SEO Experts evolves. If you are exploring SEO as a career option, this step-by-step SEO tutorial will give you a basic understanding of what is SEO and meaningful insights to kickstart your career in SEO.

Topics covered in this complete guide to SEO for beginners:

  1. Steps to pursue a career in SEO
  2. Career path and the average salary of SEO Analysts
  3. SEO FAQs

Steps to Pursue a Career in SEO

SEO is an important marketing channel as it plays a major role in generating quality leads. Whatever brings business to any company will always be in trend, and that is why SEO professionals will stay in huge demand.

Many graduates, designers, content experts, and marketing professionals are considering to learn SEO strategies. If you too are interested in learning SEO basics and advanced SEO techniques; simply scroll down.

10 Successful Steps for Landing a Job as an SEO Expert:

Step 1: Know what is SEO marketing and find if you interested in SEO

Step 2: Identify the scope of SEO, qualifications, and skills required

Step 3: Acquire the necessary skills to become an SEO specialist

Step 4: Learn how to use SEO techniques and tools

Step 5: Go for Google Ad Certifications and SEO courses for beginners

Step 6: Groom basic development skills

Step 7: Prepare for SEO interview questions

Step 8: Take up an internship or full-time Job in SEO

Step 9: Network with digital marketers, content specialist, and SEO team

Step 10: Keep learning and experimenting

Let’s look at each step in detail:

1). What is SEO Marketing, and are you really interested in SEO?
When planning for a career in search engine optimization, you must know what is SEO in a website, and are you sure about taking SEO as a career. With constant Google updates, a career in Search engine optimization becomes very volatile. But, if you are looking for a job that doesn’t require much effort to track constant changes and experiments; think twice before taking up a career in SEO. But if you love changes, you get an opportunity to work for a field that is exponentially growing.

Pro Tip – Take up online SEO Fundamentals Certification Course certified by SEMrush to learn more about the basics of SEO just in 4 hours.

2). Identify the Scope of SEO, Qualifications

To begin your career in SEO, you should have at least a graduation degree. In the later years with ample experience and training, an SEO fresher can climb the ladder and become an SEO Specialist, SEO Project Manager, Analytics Expert, or a Digital Marketer.

Pro Tip –  SEO expert is known by his/her analytical strengths. The better you can understand the search engine platforms and algorithms, the better will be growth opportunities for you.

3). Acquire the necessary skills to become an SEO specialist

Acquiring new skills is a very important aspect if you are about to kickstart a career in SEO because Google algorithms keep on changing every minute. Thus, it is essential to groom as per the market requirements. For this, you don’t need to have complete programming knowledge, but yes, some basic HTML development skills are a must.

Professional SEO Expert Must-Have Skills include:

  • Data analytics
  • Web content
  • HTML
  • CMS like Wordpress
  • On-page and off-page techniques
  • Content writing
  • Link building
  • Competitive analysis
  • Keyword research and optimization

Pro Tip- Reading is the key to acquire and strengthen SEO skills. To polish SEO skills, it is advised to drill online self-paced and classroom SEO courses like Advanced Search Engine Optimization Certification Training by Simplilearn.

4). Learn how to use SEO techniques and tools

SEO tools are the weapon of an SEO Analyst. For every course of action towards optimization, tools play an essential part. Thus, you must start getting familiar with recommended SEO tools like:

  • SEMrush
  • Google Keyword Planner
  • Screaming Frog
  • Ahrefs
  • Open Site Explorer
  • Google Search Console
  • Majestics

Pro Tip- To become an expert in using these SEO tools, you can watch YouTube videos, take up certified courses, and start using it by taking up free sign-ups.

5). Groom basic development skills

It is not that an SEO executive must know all the advanced level of programming. But yes, if you have some software development skills, it will definitely get noticed by the hiring managers.

Pro Tip- If you learn basic programming, you can easily write quick Python scripts.

6). Go for Google Ad Certifications and SEO courses for beginners

Various recruiters highly prefer candidates who have cleared the Google Adwords certification exam. Learning the basics of SEO and appearing for a certification exam will help you earn the position of SEO Expert.

Pro Tip- Study the Google Academy Content in Google Ads to prepare for both the basic and advanced levels of examination. Keep renewing your certifications regularly.

7). Prepare for SEO interview questions

If your technical round of interview goes well, you are halfway through to get a good job in SEO marketing. While preparing for the interview, you can watch the videos and read about what is SEO marketing, what are small SEO tools, which SEO techniques an expert should use, and other similar questions. Also, you can take up SEO mock tests to check your knowledge and gain confidence.

Pro Tip – Read the SEO interview questions with answers here to crack your interview.

8). Take up an internship or a full-time Job in SEO

Once you are thoroughly prepared for the SEO interview, it is the right time to seek an internship in SEO or get into a full-time SEO job. Working with a team on real-time projects will encash your theoretical knowledge into practical SEO applications. 

Pro Tip- Look for a company that can give you a platform to strengthen your basic knowledge of SEO. This will help you in the long run when planning to start a full-fledged career in SEO.

9). Network with digital marketers, content specialists, and SEO team

Networking is a must no matter in which industry or role you are into. Working with a proficient team will help you boost your SEO knowledge and discover new challenges, possibilities, and ideas. Remember, I have mentioned earlier that SEO is a dynamic career that requires a proactive approach. Yes, networking with digital marketers, SEO team, marketing managers, developers, and content specialists will give you a ground to grow.

Pro TipYou can sign up for online and classroom SEO training courses where you get an opportunity to meet like-minded SEO groups.

10). Keep learning and experimenting

Once you enter any organization and start working, don’t forget to upgrade yourself regularly through certifications and courses. Learning SEO will always expand your skies. Also, keep experimenting with your concepts (not too much; until you are confident about outcomes).

Pro Tip- SEO is a challenging job, and if you appreciate taking up new challenges, this is the domain for you!

Exciting Career Path for SEO Masters

Below are the 5 popular roles and career path for a person having experience (freshers and experienced) in SEO:

  • SEO Manager or SEO marketing consultant
  • Search engine marketer
  • Digital marketing manager
  • Content marketer
  • VP – Online Marketing
  • Head of Marketing
  • Entrepreneur

As per the Naukri database, the average salary of an SEO analyst is:

SEO Analyst Average Salary

Frequently Asked SEO Questions

First things first! Before concluding whether SEO is the right career choice for you, let me pen-down what is SEO and highlight the basics of SEO. Below are the answers to some of the commonly asked questions related to SEO.

  1. What is SEO?

SEO’s full form is Search engine optimization, which is the practice to magnify the quality and quantity of organic search traffic on a particular website via search engine platforms.

2). What is organic traffic in SEO?

Organic traffic is referred to that traffic which comes onto your website naturally without paying any price. Every SEO expert aims for maximizing organic traffic as it helps in increasing the overall website quality score.

3). How SEO Works?

The main objective of search engines is to demonstrate the best results to their users. Something that is very informative, unique, and is adding value will definitely get recognized by search engine platforms.

Search engine platforms like Google, Bing, and Yahoo have their own algorithms to rank any content based upon the user’s search queries. For this, Google and other search platforms, have their own crawlers that hunt information from all the new and updated content present on the internet. Further, these crawlers drop the information in the form of 0 and 1 to build an index that is analyzed based on Google algorithms.

Now the job of an SEO expert is to guess the right pattern of such algorithms along with 200+ ranking factors and follow SEO-friendly practices to promote the content. The SEO head’s constant page optimization efforts increase the chance of scaling your web pages on Google’s first page. These efforts involve on-page and off-page optimization.

4). What is On-Page and Off-Page SEO Marketing?

For improving the rankings, SEO experts work on two SEO landscapes – On-page optimization and off-page optimization. For winning a position on search engines, the SEO team works on optimizing both on-page and off-page.

Keyword placements & optimization, meta descriptions & titles, alt tags, URL structures, internal linkings, website load time, mobile responsive, all comes under on-page optimization. To appear on the top, a webmaster must optimize all these aspects within the website.

Off-page optimization factors include strategies like external backlinks, domain authority, social media marketing, link building, and page promotions.

5). What are the top SEO tools?

Here is the list of widely-used SEO tools:

SEO Tools

Key Take-Aways

It is said that you must pick a career that excites you and at the same time satisfy you. When planning for a career in search engine optimization, a component of digital marketing, you get an opportunity to work with an industry that is exponentially growing.

Remember, today’s expert in something was once just a beginner. So start your career in SEO, take-up popular SEO courses and certifications, and become an experienced leader in your domain.


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About the Author

Pratibha Roy

Pratibha Roy

A content specialist by profession, Pratibha has four+ years of experience in writing engaging articles and blogs. She strongly believes in the power of words and equips new ideas with the motive of imparting comprehensive knowledge to the readers. When away from work, she loves reading books with a cup of hot coffee in hand.