How to Build an Effective SEO Team

Whether you’re building a team from scratch, you’re expanding your team, or you’re starting a new online-based business that will rely primarily on SEO, the people who are part of your team are integral to your success. 

Building an SEO team will be what could ultimately drive your business growth. 

There are technical considerations that come with building a team. For example, you’ll have to create an infrastructure where everyone can securely access the resources they need to do their jobs with minimal friction. 

Before you can get to those elements, though, you have to know what’s going to make for the best foundational elements of your team. 

The following are things to know as you build a powerful SEO team. 

Know the Key Skills Making Up An SEO Dream Team

Before you can start choosing individual team members, you need an idea of the skills that are vital for SEO. 

Some of the skills your team will need to have include:

  • Web development—SEO is in some ways moving away from code, and the focus is more on content, but that doesn’t mean code isn’t still what underlies SEO. If you don’t have good technical SEO in place, you’re not going to rank. You don’t necessarily need a full-time developer, but you need someone on your team that you can turn to with development work. 
  • Content creation– you need an amazing content creator. Millions of blogs are published every single day, so you need someone who’s equipped to help you stand out. That means that your content creator needs to effectively cover topics in an in-depth way but also in a way that’s easy to understand. Content creators need to be able to collaborate and develop content for a variety of mediums like video content, infographics, and podcasts. 
  • Linkbuilding—a great link builder has to be on your SEO team because the links going back to your site and content remain one of the biggest Google ranking factors. 
  • Design—good design is one way that you can set your content apart and make sure that it’s shareable. 

Finding Your SEO Team

Figure Out How Your SEO Team Will Work

Once you have an idea of the general skills that need to make up an SEO team, start to think about how it’s going to work. 

There’s not one particular formula you can use to create a team. 

Instead, you have to think about what’s going to work for your business specifically. 

An example of a structure could include a team leader and SEO specialist heading everything up. These are the people who have in-depth, technical expertise in the area of SEO. From there, you might have a link-building specialist and a copywriter. Those positions are usually the minimum you need to have in place for an effective in-house SEO team. 

When you build an in-house team, there are going to be significant benefits. 

You’ll have agility, for example. You’ll have more contact with an internal team, and you can keep everyone in the loop more effectively. 

You may achieve better results simply because an in-house or dedicated team is going to have a deep understanding of your business and customers. 

There’s also transparency, giving more control over data and operations. 

Get More Specific About Your Goals

Once you’ve considered what’s above, you can start to determine your more specific goals and hiring needs. 

Think about your budget and what you’re trying to achieve in the short-, medium- and long term. 

You can begin to assess your competition and think about what the landscape looks like for you. 

For example, what are the keywords you’re targeting, and how competitive are they?

What are the roles you need to fill the most in the short term?

As an example, maybe you already have content, but you’re finding it’s not ranking. If that’s the case, you might need to focus more of your efforts and budget on link building, especially if you target very competitive keywords. 

On the other hand, if you have little or no content, start there. 

If you aren’t exactly sure where to focus at first, you might use an audit tool to learn more about your technical SEO and start to see what gaps exist in your current strategy. 


Building an SEO team isn’t necessarily inexpensive. You can expect to pay someone like an SEO manager anywhere from $60,000 to $100,000 a year. Content managers might earn upwards of $75,000 a year and writers upwards of $50,000 a year. 

One solution, if you’re in the very early stages of your business and don’t have a huge budget, is to hire contractors or freelancers. There are some downsides of this, like the fact they may be working on other projects at the same time, but for some businesses, it can be the only option at the start. 

As your business grows, your budget will too, and you can bring on more people full-time as part of your SEO team. 

Finding Talent

By now, if you’ve done everything listed above, you should have a pretty good idea of who you need, so now it’s time to figure out how to hire them.

There are a lot of ways to find people who specialize in various areas of SEO. For example, you can go to Upwork if you want freelancers or contractors, you can post job listings on sites for employees on sites like Indeed. 

You need to create quality job listings if you hope to find the right people. 

You do want the people you hire to have the necessary skill sets, but remember that SEO is constantly changing and evolving, so a willingness to learn and stay up-to-date on these changes is important too. 

Have a Plan for Task Management In Place

Around the time you start putting your team together, you need to make sure you have a good system for managing workflows and projects. A task management software solution will be a big part of making sure your team is able to access everything they need at any given time. 

Now, with so many people working remotely, this is even more important. 

With task management software, you can create different projects for teams within your business. You’ll be able to see who’s working on what and track progress.

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