With all of the talk of redundancies and economic depression I thought that I’d focus on the career prospects in the search marketing sector as they’ve never looked better.
Here are a few reasons, as I shall explain below:
- Existing skills shortage
- Growing market
- Good salaries
- Strong career prospects
- Easy to learn (e.g. from information on the internet)
Pre-existing skills shortage
It’s all well and good talking about the future, however, the present is just as important. As it happens there are currently plenty of vacancies in natural and paid search at every level from eager trainees to Agency Directors. A quick search of sites such as http://www.jobsinsearch.com/ as well as Google searches for “SEO jobs” confirms this to be the case.
Reports suggest that internet advertising will rise by around 8% over the next year, at the same time as spending on every other advertising channel (print, tv, radio) is set to fall.
Some reasons for the internet’s ongoing advertising popularity include the fact that many major brands don’t yet have decent web presence and that the total number of surfers (fixed and mobile) is still rapidly increasing. The total number of blogs has apparently doubled in the past year, for example.
Salaries range from under £20k to over £60k with plenty of roles, both in house and agency side advertised at every level. Not all companies pay the same wither there typically being a £5-10K variation in salary for roles at a similar level.
Trainee SEO Salaries
Trainee SEO roles are frequently advertised in Gumtree and similar community job sites, paying around £15,000 pa. While that’s not amazing money, it’s not a bad training salary in order to help you get your foot in the door in an entirely new industry.
Junior SEO Consultant Salaries
Junior roles for those with a few months experience are typically in the region of £20-25,000 pa.
Mid level SEO Consultant Salaries
Mid level appointment generally advertise £30-40,000
Senior SEO Consultant, Search Manager and Search Director Salaries
Senior SEO roles offer from £40,000 up to £60,000 and beyond depending on the role’s level of specialism, seniority and the value that each company places on SEO.
Strong career prospects
SEO is a new, effective and fast evolving form of internet marketing, meaning that there are relatively few people out the with strong subject knowledge, as compared to other marketing disciplines. There are not as yet any formal courses teaching it or defined career path into it, beyond one day crash courses, unlike for more traditional marketing. Also, due the search industries fast moving nature and Google’s ongoing innovation (among others) it’s a full time job keeping up with the latest advances and soon to be outdated techniques (which worked fine last year). This means that senior managers, even if once conversant in the finer points of SEO, will find that their own knowledge dates very quickly, further shrinking the pool of those “in the know”.
Easy to learn (e.g. from information on the internet)
Despite all of these challenges keep the number of good consultants down, it’s actually very easy to learn, not being as technical as programming or as arty as design or copywriting. Further, speaking as a now senior, but originally self-taught SEO professional, I can confirm that it’s more than possible to learn everything you need to know from the web, although it can take some time to learn which sources are authoritative, as there’s a lot of nonsense out there too.