How To Become An SEO Specialist In Australia: Explained

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Students want to know how they can become SEO specialists in Australia.


Are you a creative and analytical person who likes marketing and searching online? If yes, an SEO Specialist career could be perfect for you.


SEO Specialists use SEO tools to analyse online content to improve its rankings on search engines. They help businesses get discovered by customers online by targeting the right audience.


You do not need any formal qualifications to work as an SEO Specialist. However, gaining an SEO certification in Australia at TAFE or any other RTO could improve your entry into this profession.


This guide will help you find out what SEO specialists do, what they study, what skills they need, their average salary, and how to become an SEO specialist in Australia.



1. What Is SEO?


Search Engine Optimisation or SEO is about understanding how search engines work and how to increase the visibility of a website/ webpages on search engines.


You can implement SEO in several different ways, such as:


  • On-page SEO

  • Off-page SEO

  • Backlinking

  • Enhancing the online reputation of business 

  • Citations (business listings)

  • Page loading times 

  • Mobile responsiveness 



2. What Is An SEO Specialist?


SEO Specialists are digital marketing professionals with advanced computer skills and creative insights. They are well-versed in SEO and work to achieve higher search engine rankings of websites in online searches.


They evaluate the website performance and develop optimised content and strategies to help companies grow their organic (unpaid) traffic. 



3. What Does An SEO Specialist Do?


The following are the most common duties that you may expect to perform in this role:


  • Examine the performance of the website and its search engine rankings data.

  • Review and adjust website architecture, linking structure, and content.

  • Carry out research to identify the best keywords for use throughout the web content.

  • Identify areas of improvement in the website and web content 

  • Research current market statistics

  • Plan keyword strategies based on research and insights

  • Identify influential strategies to drive consumers to the website

  • Develop SEO strategies to help improve website rankings while staying within a budget.

  • Write web content for target keywords and search phrases 

  • Streamline website functions to enhance the crawling efficiency of search bots

  • Reduce the size of images for fast loading of webpages

  • Ensure best SEO practices and standards across the website and all online marketing channels

  • Plan and execute link-building campaigns

  • Create and analyse reports for clients periodically

  • Communicate their findings with other marketing professionals

  • Work with content writers and other professionals involved to build optimised metadata and content

  • Outreach to develop a link profile to achieve high rankings 

  • Monitor search engine rankings regularly and make adjustments as needed

  • Stay on top of the latest SEO developments, trends, and rankings techniques

  • Write and create content per the company's business, brand, and consumers



4. SEO Specialist Skills


SEO experts are creative people with good writing experience. These are the key attributes required to optimise content that audiences and Google will understand.


In addition, they also need soft skills, "core" SEO skills, and digital marketing skills, such as web design and content writing to get started in the SEO industry.


  • Interest in the internet, technology, and digital marketing

  • Good technical knowledge of website development 

  • Basic understanding of HTML, SEO, digital marketing, Google Analytics, and Google Webmaster tools

  • Good understanding of the impact of technical SEO on search rankings

  • Proficiency in infographics and video 

  • Able to find high-volume and low-competition keywords

  • Able to promote and develop links to crucial pages

  • Copywriting skills

  • Patience 

  • Attention to detail

  • Excellent communicator 

  • Content creation skill

  • Self-confidence

  • Analytical skill

  • Can work well independently or as part of a team 

  • Good problem solver

  • Great time management skills

  • Good interpersonal skills

  • A willingness to learn

  • Like staying updated with changes in Google algorithm and evolving SEO trends

  • Excellent research techniques



5. SEO Specialist Qualifications In Australia


No formal qualification is required to work as a Search Engine Optimisation Specialist. However, many employers seek candidates who hold a relevant degree.


  1. Complete your Year 12 education focusing on English, Maths, and IT.

  2. Consider completing a 3-year full-time undergraduate degree in IT, advertising, communications, computing, marketing, or a related field.

  3. Consider taking programming courses to learn programming languages such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Python.

  4. Complete an SEO specialist course to develop practical skills and experience using Google WebMaster Tools, Google Search Console, Google Analytics, backlink checkers, rank trackers, and other specialised SEO tools.

  5. Look for internship opportunities to build relevant SEO experience while studying.

  6. Consider upskilling with postgraduate qualifications.



6. Steps To Become A SEO Specialist In Australia


Are you looking for a career as an SEO Specialist? Follow this step-by-step guide to prepare for this role.



Step 1: Learn The Basics of Search Engine Optimisation


The first step to starting your professional journey is to gain a basic understanding of SEO. It will help you build a stronger foundation in SEO.


  • Get familiar with essential SEO metrics, such as Impressions, page clicks, CTRs, and Organic Sessions.

  • Understand the basics of HTML to optimise your website and troubleshoot technical SEO problems

  • Learn how to find and choose the right keywords to get your website ranked at the top of the first page of Google.

  • Learn how to optimise the content by placing the correct number and type of keywords at different places in the content 

  • To become an SEO expert, you also need to be good at building backlinks. Start by familiarising yourself with link-building, white hat link-building approaches, techniques and strategies.



Step 2: Complete SEO Specialist Courses


Do you want to know how to become SEO certified? Having gained the basic knowledge, consider completing SEO specialist courses to develop advanced-level SEO skills to work as a Certified SEO Specialist.


Earning certification shows that you have adequate knowledge in a specific area of SEO to work in this field. It also makes you credible when you network on job portals like LinkedIn.


The course provides you with the skills to advance in your SEO career. You develop hands-on experience with various digital tools, learn the best SEO practices and sophisticated techniques, and build soft skills. These include strategic thinking, organisation, and communication skills that will help while working in this role.



Step 3: Put Your Skills Into Action


The next step is to practice what you have learned so far. Create your SEO campaigns and try different things to find what strategies work. Keep detailed records of your SEO efforts. They will help you later.


Practice technical SEO to improve indexing, website architecture, and rendering to make a website quick to load, crawlable, and faster to find by consumers.


Practice working with SEO tools, keywords, image sizes, HTML tags, microdata, and metadata, as they influence SEO. Focus on improving your content writing and optimisation skills to create content that ranks high on search engines.



Step 4: Build a Portfolio of SEO Projects


These practice campaigns will help you sharpen your skills and form the base of your professional SEO portfolio. 


Even if you don't have paid experience working in SEO, your work portfolio can feature processes, techniques and strategies, insights gained, and SEO courses.



Step 5: Widen Your Network


To become an SEO freelancer, you first have to do networking and broaden your professional circle. It will help you expand your knowledge and credibility and find more job opportunities.


Here are some options for building industry connections to increase your chances of job success:


  • Join SEO communities

  • Connect with SEO consultants and SEO agencies on LinkedIn, Twitter, and other related forums

  • Start an industry-related website to demonstrate your SEO efforts, share your work, and build an online presence 

  • Attend online and offline networking events like SEO workshops and conferences to stay updated with the industry.



Step 6: Stay Updated


SEO is constantly changing and evolving at a rapid pace. You must stay on top of the changes in SEO, Google algorithms, and new tools and techniques to offer the best results to your clients.



A Few Recommended Degree options are:


  • Bachelor of Business (Design and Marketing) - University of South Australia

  • Bachelor of Commerce (Marketing) - The University of Melbourne

  • Bachelor of Science (Psychology) - Bachelor of Commerce (Marketing) - Curtin University 

  • Diploma of Digital Marketing: TAFE - Australian College of Business Intelligence (Online, 52 weeks full-time)

  • Advanced Diploma in Digital Marketing: TAFE - Australian College of Business Intelligence (Online/Virtual, 52-weeks full-time)

  • Graduate Certificate in Digital Marketing: Curtin University - (6 months, full-time, Curtin Perth and Curtin University)

  • Graduate Certificate in Applied Digital Marketing: Charles Sturt University - (4 months full-time or eight months part-time, Online) 

  • Graduate Certificate of Marketing: Swinburne - (6 months, Online/No-campus study, Hawthorn location)



7. How Long Does It Take To Be An SEO Expert?


You are ready to work as an SEO Expert with no formal qualifications. However, completing introductory SEO courses and gaining some work experience is beneficial to get a kickstart in this profession.


There are undergraduate degree programs/diplomas/advanced diplomas/postgraduate certification courses that can help you prepare for this career.


Depending on your study pathway, it can take around six months to three years to gain the knowledge and skills to land an SEO Specialist role in Australia.



8. Working Conditions For SEO Specialists


SEO Specialists work indoors and at a desk. Around 77% of SEO Specialists work full-time, which shows some part-time work opportunities.


Full-time workers work for 44 hours a week on average. There are very few occasions when professionals need to work outside business hours. 



9. Employment Opportunities For A SEO Specialist


SEO specialists work as in-house specialists for companies that manufacture or distribute industrial or consumer goods or offer private business services.


They may also work in government departments and enterprises, advertising agencies, insurance firms, and banking organisations.


The most common SEO specialist jobs include:



There are also opportunities for contract-based assignments, freelancing, or running your consultancy business.



10. Specialisations For SEO Specialists


SEO specialists usually work in digital marketing firms to develop online marketing strategies covering off-site and on-site page rankings factors and all aspects of content.


They implement search engine marketing techniques, including optimisation, Pay Per Click, outreach, site analytics, and social media.


SEO specialists may gain specialised knowledge and skills to enhance the search engine rankings of websites. 



11. Job Outlook For SEO Specialists In Australia


Over 93% of digital experiences begin with an online search. For example, to find services or products. Due to this, many companies now invest in SEO to achieve higher rankings and better visibility on search engines. 


SEO Specialists benefit a business by making it discoverable to audiences and bringing more organic traffic to the website.


By hiring SEO experts, businesses can ensure the right SEO implementation that leads to a high ROI (Return On Investment) and overall company success. 


Moreover, the continuing trend of digitisation increases the demand for SEO Specialists. It creates more job opportunities all over the country.


SEO is a growing industry, with jobs available in large towns and cities across Australia. Victoria and New South Wales have the highest number of SEO specialists in the marketing and communications industry. 


Future career growth is strong in this profession. SEO and digital marketing skills are in great demand in Australia and worldwide. Thus, the career also allows me to work with overseas clients and travel the world.



12. What Is An SEO Specialist's Salary?


The average SEO specialist salary in Australia is AU$60,480 per year or an hourly equivalent of AU$25.49. The salary of an SEO specialist depends on their skills, experience, work portfolio, employer, and many other factors. 


With experience, an SEO specialist can expect a potentially higher salary than the newbies in the industry.


Here is the approx. Annual Pay as per Experience:


  • Entry-level SEO Specialists (1-year experience): AU$52,807

  • Early career SEO Specialists (1 to 4 years of experience): AU$59,666

  • Mid-career SEO Specialists (5 to 9 years of experience): AU$68,954 

  • Experienced SEO Specialists (10 to 19 years of experience): AU$105,000 


SEO Specialist's average salary in the following cities:


  • Melbourne VIC: $92,801 per year

  • Sydney NSW: $86,193 per year

  • Melbourne City Centre VIC: $84,325 per year

  • South Yarra VIC: $81,834 per year

  • Docklands VIC: $79,855 per year

  • Brisbane QLD: $72,335 per year

  • Adelaide SA: $69,938 per year

  • Diamond Creek VIC: $66,284 per year



13. Conclusion


With the ever-rising complexity of search engine optimisation and its significance in driving traffic, SEO experts have become an inevitable need for any business.


Being good with SEO technology and staying up to date with trends is essential to work and succeeding in this profession. As SEO is a vast field, aspiring SEO experts must know that it takes time to master SEO skills and excel in this field.


Completing an SEO Specialist course is the perfect way to learn all aspects of SEO, refine your skills and make a great start in this profession.


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