SEO Hiring: What to Expect and How to Get the Best Candidates

SEO hiring interview hand shake

Your business’s online presence sets you apart in a sea of competition. That’s where a search engine optimisation (SEO) expert comes in, as they can lift your website out of the depths and get more people to know more about your company.

Hiring an SEO expert requires you to spend money on them. But if they implement the right strategies, expect to get more than what you paid for. Because you’re not just gaining traffic—you’re also building a loyal customer base, which serves as an investment in your business’s future.

Let’s dive into why finding the right SEO professional is crucial and how to hire SEO experts who will positively impact your business.

Importance of Search Engine Optimization for Business Growth

SEO hiring researching

Search engine optimization (SEO) aims to enhance your visibility in search results, making it easier for your target audience to find you. When done correctly, this leads to more website traffic, higher quality leads, and increased revenue.

The professional SEO expert you’ll hire for your organisation is responsible for developing campaigns designed to help your website climb the search engine rankings effectively.

It begins with conducting an SEO audit of your site to identify and rectify any issues undermining its performance. From the gathered data, these marketing professionals can research the best keywords to optimise your site pages. The expert also creates and publishes blog posts for each search term to boost the site’s content marketing plan.

They must also know how to implement the best technical SEO practices to ensure that search engines index the best pages on your site while optimising its crawl budget.

To further improve website rankings, they must launch a link building strategy by attracting inbound links from authoritative websites relevant to their niche.

The SEO freelancer or expert will then monitor the results using tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console to see if the efforts increase organic search traffic and tweak the upcoming campaign to produce better results.

Finally, the SEO professional must be in touch with ongoing changes in search engine algorithms. They should know the correlation between the increase and decrease of your site’s search traffic with the latest algorithm update and test their claims through the campaigns they’ll create.

Qualities to Look for in an SEO Expert

SEO hiring research

Identifying a capable SEO specialist for hire who can mesh well with your digital marketing efforts and push your search engine rankings higher requires a strategic approach.

First, this person needs to possess the SEO skills above. Ideally, you want to hire a professional proficient in a specific SEO technique, not a jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none person.

If your business needs high-quality backlinks, you must hire a link builder with a proven track record of launching link outreach campaigns that deliver results. The same goes for hiring on-page SEO specialists, technical SEO experts, and others. Their body of work, positive testimonials from previous employers, and their deep knowledge of SEO should dictate who you choose as part of your SEO team.

Their proficiency with advanced SEO tools such as Ahrefs, Screaming Frog SEO Spider, and such are not necessary but are a huge plus. These platforms can help expedite the development and execution of an SEO campaign for your site, allowing them to get more things done with better efficiency.

Outside of SEO skills, the SEO consultant should also be strategic thinkers who can align their SEO strategies with your overall business goals and think on their feet Hiring someone who sees the bigger picture and can work seamlessly with your existing marketing teams will also bring comprehensive benefits beyond just boosted search results.

Lastly, don’t overlook the importance of communication skills. Your chosen SEO professional must articulate recommendations clearly and maintain an open line of communication throughout the duration of your SEO projects. After all, SEO is an ongoing process, and you’ll want someone who keeps you informed and involved at every step.

Creating an Effective Job Description for the SEO Specialist for Hire

SEO hiring meeting

Crafting a compelling and precise SEO job description is crucial to attracting the right candidates. By following the steps below, you’ll be able to capture the essence of the role and attract the most qualified and enthusiastic SEO freelancers in the field. 

Define the Role Clearly

Start with a clear, concise job title that reflects the position’s responsibilities. Avoid jargon that might confuse applicants. Then, provide a brief overview of the role’s purpose within your organisation, emphasising its importance for business success.

Detail the Responsibilities

List the specific duties of the SEO expert. This might include conducting keyword research, developing and implementing SEO strategies, optimising web pages, analysing performance metrics, and staying updated with SEO trends and algorithm changes. Be as detailed as possible to set clear expectations.

Specify Desired Outcomes and KPIs

Explain what success looks like for this role. Include key performance indicators (KPIs) such as improvements in search rankings, organic traffic growth, conversion rates, and other relevant metrics. This helps candidates understand the goals they will be working towards.

Highlight Necessary Skills and Qualifications

Outline the technical skills (e.g., proficiency with SEO tools like Ahrefs or SEMrush), analytical abilities, and experience levels you’re seeking. Don’t forget to mention soft skills like communication, problem-solving, and adaptability, which are just as important in a dynamic field like SEO.

Emphasise Growth and Learning Opportunities

Attract top talent by showcasing the professional development opportunities your company offers. Mention any training programs, conferences, or learning resources available to employees.

Describe the Company Culture

Give candidates a sense of what it’s like to work at your company. Highlight your company’s values, mission, and any unique aspects of your work environment that make your company an attractive place to work.

Be Transparent About Salary and Benefits

A salary range can increase transparency and attract candidates who are serious about the role. Also, detail any additional benefits such as remote work options, health insurance, retirement plans, or performance bonuses.

Questions to Ask When Hiring an SEO Expert

SEO Hiring interview

To hire SEO professionals, you must know the questions to ask them during the screening process. Their answers will provide you insights into the kind of freelance SEO expert they are and whether they can help increase your site’s organic traffic.

Here are some key questions about their hard and soft skills you must consider asking:

  1. What is your experience with SEO, and how long have you been in the industry? Can you provide case studies or examples of past clients you’ve assisted with SEO? This will help you understand their level of experience and the results they’ve achieved.
  2. What are some tactics for an SEO strategy you have seen working well recently for a business like mine? SEO is not one-size-fits-all, so their strategies should be tailored to your industry and business needs.
  3. How do you measure the success of your SEO campaigns? SEO consultants should be able to explain how they track and report on key performance indicators (KPIs).
  4. Can you explain your link-building strategy? Backlinks are a significant factor in off-page optimization, so it’s important to understand how SEO professionals approach this aspect.
  5. How do you stay up-to-date with the latest SEO trends and algorithm changes? The industry constantly evolves, so prospective SEO experts must possess current SEO knowledge and the appetite for ongoing learning and adaptation.
  6. What is your approach to keyword research? Keywords are essential for SEO, and a good freelance SEO specialist should have a clear, strategic approach to finding and selecting keywords that align with your business goals and audience search intent.
  7. How do you approach on-page SEO elements? They should be knowledgeable about optimising elements such as title tags, meta descriptions, header tags, and content to improve rankings and user experience.
  8. How do you report on progress, and what does that report look like? What do you do if results do not meet expectations or if rankings drop? Regular reporting should be part of their SEO services, and they should be able to provide reports that clearly show progress and areas for improvement.
  9. What is your experience with local SEO? Ask this question if your business relies on local customers. Knowing how they manage local listings and optimise for local search queries is important.
  10. Can you explain how you align SEO with an organisation’s marketing strategy? SEO should not be an isolated part of your marketing efforts and must be integrated with your overall online marketing strategy.


The key to hiring SEO talent for your organisation is to know whether the person you’re screening meets all your requirements and specifications. This is easier said than done because you have to develop a process of filtering out candidates and analysing who among the shortlisted prospects can improve your website’s SEO and increase your site’s Google SERP rankings.

SEO.Careers can help you in this regard. We will send you SEO candidates that we feel will be a worthwhile investment in your organisation based on the information you provide us. Schedule a call with us so we can help build your company’s SEO team or fill a position in your team.

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