The Financial Path of an SEO Newcomer: A Look at the SEO Starting Salary

Embarking on a career in SEO? You’re likely curious about what your wallet can expect in those initial stages. It’s a field that provides value to a brand’s target audience, big and small, through its website, resulting in increased digital presence. 

However, being an SEO is not just about helping companies achieve their goals and expectations. It’s also about building a professional career that’s ripe with future opportunities and growth moving forward.

Whether fresh out of university or making a career pivot, knowing the financial landscape can help you confidently navigate your early career moves. Let’s dive into what you need to know about SEO starting salaries.

Salary Growth in the SEO Field

As your career evolves from an SEO executive to potentially an SEO manager or director, expect an increase in your salary too.

For entry-level employees, the average SEO salary offers a competitive starting point. But as you climb the ladder, the figures change substantially. Here’s a breakdown:

Job Title Average Salary (Yearly in £)
SEO Specialist £25K – £39K
SEO Manager £32K – £45K
SEO Director £45K – £64K

Factors Affecting SEO Starting Salaries

Mind you that the salaries above are just estimates rather than the actual amount. That means you can earn much higher (or lower) than the prices indicated for each SEO position.

Obviously, you want to attain the highest possible salary for the SEO job position you’re applying for. And to achieve that, you need to read up on the factors below that dictate how much SEO jobs pay.

Location Matters

In the UK, different locations present distinct opportunities and pay scales for SEO roles. For instance, London, known for its bustling digital marketing scene, typically offers higher salaries to compensate for the higher cost of living. However, venturing outside London to other UK locations might present more competitive salary packages when considering the cost-of-living index.

A quick salary search shows you a range of salaries a starting SEO specialist earns in various UK locations:

Location Average SEO Starting Salary
London £38,000
Manchester £28,000
Birmingham £27,000+
Edinburgh £31,000
Bristol £23,000

Experience Counts

Your experience in SEO, including knowledge of Google Analytics, link building strategies, and digital marketing tools, can directly impact your starting salary. 

More important than a good understanding of SEO, you must show proven results, such as increased website traffic or improved Google rankings of a site you worked on in the past. If you’re vying for a managerial position, you must show how you mobilised your team to achieve your campaign goals and the specific problems you had to overcome successfully.

Finally, your specialisation dictates how much you can earn as an SEO professional. While organisations appreciate people who are well aware of the best SEO practices, they pay a higher amount to people who are very proficient at a specific task

Company Size and Industry

The size of the company and the industry it operates in can greatly affect salaries. Larger companies and those in competitive industries often offer higher salaries to attract and retain top talent. Additionally, agency roles may offer different compensations compared to in-house positions, often reflecting the agency’s client base and project diversity.

Role Complexity and Responsibilities

The scope of the SEO role you’re applying for will also influence your starting salary. In fact, not all SEO specialists are paid within the same salary bracket. Some of them, especially link builders, command a much higher salary due to the 

As already seen above, positions requiring management of entire SEO strategies (director and manager) tend to offer higher salaries than roles focused solely on SEO (specialist or executive).

It’s also worth noting that agency roles often offer varied salary scales based on the client portfolio and specialised services like link building strategies or technical SEO provided. Conversely, in-house roles may offer different benefits like more predictable working hours and opportunities for internal career development.

Negotiating Your SEO Salary

Knowing the baseline salary of starting SEO salaries and your current level of skills, you should be able to negotiate a price that favours you, if not both parties.

But before you send in your applications to these companies, thoroughly research the employer and what their past and current employers say about the organisation. Check Glassdoor or recruitment forums for employee reviews to show how the employer treats them. As the saying goes, if there’s smoke (negative reviews), there’s fire.

If the company treats its employees right, send your application and hope for the best.

When discussing your salary during the interview, be clear about your expectations but remain open to hearing about the company’s offer. For instance, negotiation should extend beyond just the salary. Sometimes, negotiating might also mean exploring opportunities for professional development, such as training, which could pave the way for future salary increments.

Remember that salary negotiation is a give-and-take situation. The idea is to get the salary you feel you deserve while the company hiring you will measure your performance to determine if its investment (meaning, you) is panning out.

Dominate Your Job Search with SEO.Careers

Before you find SEO jobs, be aware of the factors affecting your potential earnings. If you have the experience and portfolio that prove your SEO proficiency, all while living in UK cities with higher living costs, expect to earn a much higher salary than SEO candidates without experience.

To help expand your search to other relevant jobs in the SEO industry, check out SEO.Careers. We help you connect with potential employers looking for talented professionals with the skills and experience of performing SEO tasks and successfully ranking websites with their efforts. 

Unlike other recruitment agencies, we tailor your skills based on prospective clients who need them the most. This way, you can practice your craft and other things you can offer to an organisation that will value them the most.

Submit your CV here so we can shop it around businesses looking for SEO talent like you.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

New Things Will Always Update Regularly

Job Application

Start Your Career Today

Please fill in your information and send it to the employer.

Do you need support? Contact Us

Get Started

Unlock The Potential Of Top Talent

Please submit a brief. Our expert recruiters will reach out to you. 

Do you need support? Contact Us