Becoming An SEO Freelancer: Tips & Tricks To Ace In SEO Freelancing

May 27, 2024 | Basic SEO

Are you still stuck in your old corporate job despite your good SEO knowledge? Well, the world has shifted to SEO freelancing, and companies are looking for SEO freelancers who can help their brands get good visibility.

But why should you become an SEO freelancer? Freelancing, especially in the SEO domain, has tons of benefits. 

You can work at your own pace, do not have to worry about attending the office, work from anywhere you want, have multiple clients, and the biggest of them all: EARN MORE!

Yes, with freelancing SEO, you can earn much more than with your corporate job. 

But how do you become a freelance SEO expert? That’s what we are going to discuss today!

Step-by-step Guide On Becoming An SEO Freelancer

So, are you excited to become a freelance SEO expert? Well, have some patience, as there are some steps that you need to follow to become the best freelancer SEO.

1. Understand SEO

Magnifying glass on the search engine tab, surrounded by various elements

Before you portray yourself as a freelance SEO expert, you need to understand the various aspects of SEO, which means brushing up on your basics. Whether you are an experienced SEO freelancer consultant or a beginner, it is important to have a strong foundation.

Now, there are various ways through which you can learn SEO free, like taking online courses, reading informational blogs, video tutorials, etc. We would also suggest you take up a certification course in SEO, as it would help clients gain confidence in your skills.

2. Discover Your SEO Niche

Discovering target niche in freelancing SEO

Now, SEO is of various types:

  1. On-page SEO
  2. Off-page SEO
  3. Technical SEO
  4. Video SEO
  5. Local SEO
  6. Blog SEO

…and so on. 

Now, one cannot be an expert in all formats of SEO, as each of them requires different skill sets, training, and tools. So, select your freelance SEO niche on which you want to become a freelancer SEO expert, and start polishing your skills. Moreover, while niching down as an SEO freelancer, you must undergo extensive training and possess the desired skill set to attract clients.

3. Create a Portfolio

A girl creating a portfolio

You need to have a portfolio of your best work as a freelancer SEO expert. Now, we know that most beginner SEO freelancers do not have a proven work record. But you can always create a mock portfolio. 

A mock portfolio is the same as an actual portfolio, except the former one is just a sample work showcasing your skills in SEO. You can take up any brand you like and present how you can optimize their website and the impact it will bring.

Clients want to know if you have proper skills in SEO before signing a deal, and a mock portfolio will convince them.

4. Personal Branding

Two people focusing on personal branding

Personal branding is the current talk of the town.

Wherever you see, people are marketing themselves, and honestly, that’s the best method to put yourself out as a freelancer SEO. As an SEO freelancer, there are certain platforms where you can establish your personal brand.

LinkedIn is not only a platform to find clients but also to market your services and solutions.  Start posting about your SEO knowledge, the various aspects, trends, your journey as a freelance SEO expert, etc., on LinkedIn.

You can also use Instagram for personal branding. However, you need to remember that the audience on Instagram is quite different from LinkedIn. While text-based posts might work on LinkedIn, you need to shift towards video-based content on Instagram. So, make sure to design content pieces as per different platforms.

5. Pricing Strategy

Pricing strategy

Here comes the difficult part: How do you decide the service charge? Well, there is no hard and fast rule for pricing in the freelancing SEO domain. 

The best advice for pricing strategy is to charge what you feel is right. Categorize your services and decide the pricing for each set. A rate card would be the best option to display your service charges.

6. Design A Website

A man building a website

Having a good website can help you a lot as an SEO freelancer. 

You won’t have to send separate folders for samples and pricing to the clients when you can easily send your SEO freelance website link. WordPress or Wix SEO CMS would be the best options for designing a freelance SEO website.

While designing an SEO freelance website, provide correct contact details so potential leads do not face any trouble while contacting you. Also, add testimonials, client reviews, and snippets of your social media posts on SEO that performed well. It would establish authority and assure potential clients regarding your credibility.

7. Networking

As a freelance SEO expert, you need to have good communication and networking skills.

Let’s say a prospect is extremely impressed by your website and portfolio and books a call to discuss your services. But over the phone, you were unable to convince them, and they chose someone else over you. To avoid such scenarios, improve your communication skills.

Besides, we would also suggest you network with people from different industries through both online and offline modes. Attend offline events like seminars, discussions, and meet and greets to meet new people.

8. Remain Updated

Lastly, always update your knowledge about SEO. Learn about the latest trends in freelancing SEO and Google’s upcoming updates (you can learn more about it in the Google Updates timeline), and continue learning about SEO. As a freelance SEO expert, you must have a thorough knowledge of your niche.

What Are The Major Tasks Of An SEO Freelancer?

Now that you know the “steps on being an SEO freelancer,” it is important to understand the roles and responsibilities that you must adhere to as a freelance SEO expert.

Keyword Research

One of the major tasks that a freelance SEO expert needs to do is conduct thorough keyword research. 

Keyword research helps you identify search queries of the target audience that you can incorporate into your client projects and improve their site’s rankings. We would advise you not to go for manual keyword research, as it takes a lot of time and effort. The best option would be to use RankWatch’s free keyword research tool.

RankWatch Keyword Researcher dashboard

RankWatch’s keyword researcher analyzes your inputs and presents an extensive list of keywords along with essential metrics like CPC, keyword difficulty, and search volume.

RankWatch Keyword Research “Top Questions Terms” section

On top of that, it also has “top question terms” disclosing famous question-based queries, which, if implemented, increases the chances of being in featured snippets and Google passage rankings.

Competitor Analysis

No SEO freelancing project is complete without SEO competitor analysis.

As an SEO freelance expert, you need to conduct regular competitor analysis to understand competitors’ tactics, uncover essential insights, and design strategies. The best way to do this is by using a reliable competitor analysis tool like the one from RankWatch.

RankWatch Competitor analysis dashboard

It uncovers your client’s top competitors in the industry and helps you understand the current position of your client’s website.

RankWatch Competitor Analysis comparison table

On top of that, the competitor analysis has separate sections, like Ad Copies, Local, and Organic, to help you determine how your client’s website is performing in these sections as compared to their competitors.

On-page SEO Optimization

On-page SEO optimization is extremely crucial for companies, irrespective of their domains, and you, as an SEO freelancer, must have adequate knowledge of it.

We know that the on-page SEO checklist is vast, and it can get tiring while optimizing each of the factors. That’s why we suggest you use the SEO IQ feature of RankWatch, where you will get a detailed on-page SEO checklist with suggestions, comparative analysis, and comparison graphs.

RankWatch SEO IQ dashboard

Implementing the suggestions improves the SEO IQ score of the website, ultimately increasing the site’s SERP rankings chances.

RankWatch SEO IQ Exact Keyword section

The on page SEO checker also has a separate “Content Recommendations” section, which discloses long-tail keywords similar to the page’s seed keyword, its usage throughout the web page, and suggestions to improve it.

RankWatch SEO IQ “Content Recommendations” section

You can also edit and optimize the website content on the go with SEO IQ’s “Content Editor.”

RankWatch SEO IQ “Content Editor” dashboard

It provides both optimization and question-based suggestions, which, after implementation, improve the optimization status and readability score of the content.

Off-page SEO Optimization

The next thing you need to pay attention to is the off-page SEO optimization of a website.

Now, off-page SEO optimization has various aspects, like

  1. Link building
  2. Content marketing
  3. Social media marketing
  4. Guest posting

…and much more..

Amongst all the above-mentioned off-page SEO factors, link building holds the most importance. If your link-building game is not strong, it can cause serious problems in establishing website authority.

That’s why make sure to use a reliable backlink checker tool, like that of RankWatch, that can dissect your client’s link profile and provide in-depth insights.

RankWatch Backlink Audit Graph

RankWatch Backlink Audit dashboard

Moreover, you can also use it to spy on your clients’ competitors’ link profiles and discover link-building opportunities.

Website SEO Optimization

Better known as technical SEO, website SEO optimization refers to rectifying the technical issues prevailing in a website.

If you aim to be a technical SEO freelance expert, you must have thorough knowledge in this genre. On top of that, you need to have a site audit tool that can uncover all underlying technical issues of your client’s website.

RankWatch’s site auditor will be your savior here. The tool analyzes a website on various technical SEO factors and presents a site score depicting the site’s performance.

RankWatch Site Auditor dashboard

RankWatch site auditor “issues distribution” section

Moreover, it also categorizes all underlying issues found on the website so you can resolve them as per their priority level.

Project Management

Handling multiple clients is a skill that every SEO freelancer must have. Even if you are a beginner SEO freelancer, you must know how to multitask. RankWatch’s Agency Dashboard can help you view all of your client projects in one dashboard, along with their current progress.

RankWatch Agency dashboard

The Agency Dashboard also categorizes various projects per their ranking position, Alexa rank, backlink count, and other important metrics.

Tools Required To Become An SEO Freelancer

Apart from the tools we mentioned above, there are other important tools that you, as an SEO freelancer, must know.

Google Search Console

Google Search Console is one of the most important tools for a freelancer SEO expert.

GSC helps you identify all the search queries for which your client’s website is ranking. However, the major disadvantage of GSC is it only shows up to a thousand search queries. But we have a better alternative for you. 

The RankWatch Console surpasses the limitations of GSC and provides you with data for up to a million search queries for which your client’s website is ranking.

RankWatch Console dashboard

Integrate your GSC account with RankWatch Console, and you can avail of all the tool’s benefits.

Google Analytics

Another important tool an SEO freelancing expert must have is Google Analytics.

Google Analytics will help you understand how your client’s website is performing. The number of impressions, clicks, conversions, and engagement your client’s website receives is displayed on Google Analytics.

The tool also lets you know the bounce rate and dwell time to help you understand whether the content is reaching the targeted audience.

However, you can get all of this, plus more, with RankWatch Analytics.

RankWatch Analytics dashboard

Integrate your client’s Google Analytics account with RankWatch and uncover important details such as the website’s popularity in different search engines, visitors from different countries, unique visitors, conversions, profit, and much more.

Freelancing SEO is the Future!

Companies, especially start-ups and SMEs, are shifting towards SEO freelancers for the benefits they bring to the table.

With SEO freelancer experts, businesses get more value and expertise from the SEO freelancers, are able to discover their target audience across different platforms, and have personalized solutions for each of their SEO-related problems.

So, if you think being an SEO freelancer has no future or is saturated, think again!

The entire SEO freelancing domain is thriving, and you can too!

So, go ahead and implement the tips and tricks, and upgrade yourself as the ultimate freelance SEO expert!

All the best!

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