Crunching the Numbers: The Current SEO Specialist Salary in the UK

Are you interested in a UK search engine optimization (SEO) specialist career and curious about its potential earnings? Given that SEO specialists are the magicians behind the curtain, ensuring websites rank high on search engines, there’s definitely room for professional and salary growth, especially if you plan to become an SEO manager or director in the future.

But before you get ahead of yourself, you first must know the average salary an SEO specialist receives. You also want to find out factors that can affect your salary and tips on negotiating a compensation package that benefits you and your employer.

Thankfully, we covered all these and more! So, let’s get started.

What Does an SEO Specialist in the UK Do?

As an SEO specialist in the United Kingdom, your main goal is to ensure websites rank as high as possible on search engines like Google. We can break them into these distinct tasks:

  • Technical SEO Executive—Runs a comprehensive SOE audit to determine issues preventing search engines from crawling and indexing your client site on search engine results pages (SERPs).
  • Keyword Research—Finds related keywords with high search volume and low competition to optimise the site pages and rank on search engines. 
  • Content Creation—Work on an organisation’s content team and write articles, blog posts, web copy, and other SEO content types optimised for the page’s target keyword.
  • Link Building—Identifies authoritative websites as link prospects and reaches out to each one asking for a link to your website.
  • SEO Reporting—Monitors the results of the SEO strategy your team developed and launched and identifies insights to be implemented in upcoming campaigns to improve the results.

Average Salary Range for SEO Specialists in the UK

A skilled SEO executive has seen a steady demand for their skills, especially with the ever-increasing importance of SEO as a traffic source for businesses. 

An SEO executive just starting out in their career can expect an annual low salary starting at around £25,000. Experienced SEO specialists who implement effective SEO strategies can earn up to £39,000. Depending on various factors (which we will discuss shortly), expect to land an SEO specialist job within these salary ranges. That said, the average salary for SEO specialists can expect is £33,000

Factors Impacting SEO Specialist Salaries


If you want to maximise the salary you’ll get as an SEO specialist, you must know the factors that influence how much you can earn from your employers. Below are the most critical ones:

Experience and Skills

As an entry-level SEO specialist or junior role, you will start on the lower end of the pay scale. Although you may not have fully developed skills in the field, the company will provide resources to help you grow your SOE knowledge.

Your salary can increase considerably as you have a good understanding and gain more experience and improve your proficiency in specific SEO tasks, such as running SEO audits, launching a content marketing campaign, or developing link-building strategies. 

Part of the skills you must possess to help improve your salary is the ability to adapt to changing search engine algorithms and the needs of your clients or company. Continuous training and staying ahead of SEO trends is essential for anyone looking to excel in this field.

Location Matters

SEO specialists in London often earn higher salaries than those in other regions, with an average salary that can easily surpass the £38,000 mark due to the high demand and the presence of many forward-thinking companies. 

Another reason for the high rate for SEO specialists is the higher cost of living and the concentration of businesses requiring SEO expertise in the capital.

Here’s a quick look at how salaries from other UK cities and areas vary:

City Average SEO Specialist Salary
Manchester £28,000
Birmingham £27,000+
Leeds £32,000+

Company Size and Sector

Larger companies and those in competitive sectors relying heavily on online presence tend to offer higher salaries to attract skilled SEO executives. Additionally, working for a dynamic team in a forward-thinking digital marketing agency can offer a competitive salary and exciting career growth opportunities.

Freelance vs In-house

Choosing between freelance and in-house positions can also impact your earnings. A freelance SEO consultant might have the potential to earn more by juggling multiple clients. However, in-house SEO specialists often benefit from more stable incomes and additional perks like training opportunities and team collaborations.

Tips for Negotiating a Competitive Salary as an SEO Specialist

When negotiating as a senior SEO executive, highlight any positive outcomes you’ve driven from your experience and proficiency in implementing effective SEO strategies. Show the website results from your Google Analytics dashboard or other tools. Demonstrating how your skills have translated into success for other businesses can justify a higher salary.

Also, salary isn’t the only thing on the table. Consider other factors such as training opportunities, working hours, office or remote working options, and being part of a dynamic team. Sometimes, these benefits can compensate for a lower base salary but offer valuable experience and work-life balance.

Finally, negotiating a fair salary with companies is an art. Organisations’ goal is to hire talent within their budget, so they may try to offer a salary that does not match the average SEO salary mentioned above.

In this case, it’s vital to know your worth. If a company is not willing to meet your salary expectations and cannot offer other compensations that align with your career goals, be prepared to look for opportunities elsewhere. The right position at the right pay is out there, and with the demand for skilled SEO executives growing, you’re in a strong position to find it.

Get Paid as an SEO Specialist with Help from SEO.Careers

Your job search as an aspiring SEO specialist should be much clearer now that you have a clear understanding of the salary ranges for this job title and ways to increase your earnings.

At this point, you must put yourself out there and attract potential clients with your current SEO skills and knowledge. You can start by submitting your applications to recruitment agencies that can find new opportunities as an SEO specialist.

Among the agencies where you can showcase your profile, SEO.Careers connects you with prospective employers looking for the exact skills and qualifications you offer. 

We do this by interviewing companies about their goals and objectives for hiring SEO professionals. From here, we discuss the characteristics the candidates must possess and the job vacancy they are filling in the company. 

Our process enables us to not only find the right person for the company but also get jobseekers hired by a company that will oversee their professional development.

Submit your CV here so you can get your SEO specialist career started.

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