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Hire a Top SEO Specialist Using This Job Description

by YOSS Community Writer, on September 24, 2019 at 12:30 PM

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a broad field that encompasses everything from content writing to link building outreach to using analytics. If your company needs someone to manage your SEO endeavors, you need to be able to describe exactly what you are looking for to fill this role.

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What Is SEO?

SEO is a collection of tasks meant to make a website rank high in search engine results. It affects literally every part of your company’s online presence. In practice, most SEO is done for Google search purposes. Roughly 75% of desktop searches and close to 90% of mobile searches are done with Google.

Bing now has roughly 10% of the market on desktops but almost none on mobile. However, if you do a significant amount of business with China, you will need to take account of Baidu, which is used for roughly 10% of global web searches. In China specifically, Baidu dominates much like Google does in the US.

What Do SEO Specialists Do?

There are 6 key areas that SEO specialists work in:

  1. On-page
  2. Off-page
  3. Specialized
  4. Technical
  5. Research
  6. Analytics

Let's now take a look at each.

On-Page

On-page SEO calls back the old days of keyword stuffing, a problematic tactic that doesn’t work with today’s much more sophisticated search engines. Instead of matching the words in a search with the words in a webpage, search engines try to determine the user's intent. In other words, they ask: "what information is the user looking for?". Then the search engine provides pages that contain that information.

That said, keywords remain important. Tools like Clearscope allow SEO specialists to see what keywords actually say about a particular page. For example, a page may include numerous instances of the phrase "photoshop alternatives," but it will only rank high if it actually answers the implied question, "What are the alternatives to Photoshop?".

Off-Page

Off-page SEO is mostly a question of link building. It is very broad and includes tactics such as outreach to other website owners, social media campaigns, and the creation of embedded content like videos and infographics.

The idea that search results should be based on the power of other pages linking to it was invented by Google. Its centrality in search results has decreased in recent years, but it is still very important. Obtaining quality backlinks is a critical part of an SEO specialist's work.

Specialized SEO

There are many kinds of specialized SEO, but the most important are local and mobile.

For companies that cater to specific regions, local SEO is very important. According to Google, 46% of all searches have "local intent”. Instead of searching for "wicker furniture”, for example, people search for "wicker furniture san francisco."

There are different parts to local SEO. Primarily, businesses want to be listed at the top of map searches. Other important implementations include being listed in Google My Business and having an accurate name, address, and phone number (NAP) data.

The mobile web is enormously important. Google has implemented mobile-first indexing, meaning that website rankings start with the mobile version of web pages. As a result, not only do your pages need to be mobile-friendly, they need to be optimized for the mobile environment.

Technical

The technical side of SEO is related to on-page SEO. Some pieces like meta tags and image optimization are really part of both. Other parts like website speed, especially time to first byte (TTFB), are entirely technical. Other important aspects are page and site organization, usability, HTML and schema, link checking, and error handling.

Research

Knowing your industry, audience, and competitors is essential to a successful SEO operation. To know which keywords you need to target, you need to have a clear picture of who you want to attract and who else (your competition) may be trying to attract your potential visitors.

Analytics

You can monitor the success of your SEO efforts by having a firm grasp of Google Analytics and similar tools. These tools also provide insights into how people use your site so that you can create the best possible experience that both attracts and maintains users.

Additionally, SEO professionals need to be able to try out different headlines and content strategies. A/B and multivariate testing are critical to this endeavor.

SEO Job Description

A good job description needs four key elements: job title, summary, responsibilities, and skills. In addition to these, there are often fields for job relationships, compensation and benefits, application instructions, and disclaimers.

From a summary of the job itself to a list of the SEO required skills, here are the four elements of a job description that will attract top SEO talent:

Title: SEO Specialist

Summary: We are looking for a proven specialist to manage all of our SEO activities. You will be responsible for working with our content team, managing link-building and social media campaigns, interfacing with IT to optimize performance and other structural aspects of our website, research target audience and competitors, and use analytics and A/B testing to guide and test SEO efforts.

Responsibilities:

  • Research industry to create content strategies.
  • Optimize content in terms of keywords and user intent.
  • A/B test to improve headlines and other content.
  • Use web analytics to test SEO success and calculate return-on-investment (ROI) for paid campaigns.
  • Implement link-building campaigns through direct outreach, social media, and blogs.
  • Keep up-to-date with SEO research including changes made by popular search engines.

Skills:

  • Proficiency with Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools or similar.
  • Experience planning and running link-building campaigns.
  • Fluency in specialized mobile and local SEO.
  • Experience using A/B testing within an SEO campaign.
  • Familiarity with social media and its use as part of a larger SEO strategy.
  • Thorough knowledge of Google's latest search algorithm.
  • Basic understanding of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.
  • Ability to work with techs on web server optimization.
  • Clear verbal and written communication.
  • Nice to have:
    • User Interface/User Experience (UI/UX) knowledge.
    • Search Engine Marketing (SEM) experience.
    • Experience with Google Keyword Manager and bid management tools.

Summary

In order to use this job description and hire an SEO specialist, you need to know where to post it. At YOSS, we offer a great place to post jobs for high tech talent where all the candidates are pre-vetted to be in the top 1% of available workers. 

Looking to expand or better manage your current workforce? YOSS can help build your talent pool, allowing your company to stay connected with existing and new talent. Our mission is to make agile staffing easy for companies like yours so schedule a call to learn how YOSS can help.

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