35 SEO Interview Questions You Must Ask a Prospective SEO Analyst

Professional in a virtual SEO interview.

The digital marketing job market is hot right now as companies rely more and more heavily on their online presence to achieve business objectives. SEO, in particular, is one of the most in-demand digital marketing jobs.

If you’re looking to hire an SEO analyst or consultant, we want to help you find the right one. That’s why we’re sharing 35 of the exact SEO interview questions that we’ve used in the past when hiring an SEO analyst here at Bruce Clay Inc.

Keep in mind that at our SEO agency, we only hire experts with 5 or more years of experience in their fields. So some of these questions are advanced.

Nonetheless, these questions allow candidates to talk about their SEO experience and reveal their digital marketing knowledge and strategy. Pick and choose as you please.

Ready to let an SEO specialist come alongside your in-house team? Request a quote to find out about our flexible SEO consulting services.

35 SEO Interview Questions

  1. How did you learn SEO?
  2. Why did you choose SEO as a career?
  3. Regarding your previous SEO job, what did an average day look like?
  4. How do you stay updated on industry news and algorithm changes?
  5. What makes a website search engine-friendly?
  6. What steps do you use to develop an SEO strategy?
  7. What SEO tools do you regularly use?
  8. What metrics do you use to measure SEO success?
  9. What programming languages do you have experience with?
  10. What content management systems have you worked with?
  11. How do you adapt to the needs of different clients?
  12. How often do you communicate with clients?
  13. How do you stay organized when working on an SEO project?
  14. What’s your most extraordinary digital marketing success story?
  15. How do you approach keyword research?
  16. What is your opinion on proper link-building?
  17. How do you conduct an audit for toxic links?
  18. How have you dealt with link penalties?
  19. What is E-A-T and how would you strengthen E-A-T for a brand?
  20. What is local SEO?
  21. What are on-page SEO and off-page SEO?
  22. What are common SEO mistakes?
  23. What is the relationship between SEO, SEM, and social media marketing?
  24. What is a competitive analysis?
  25. What is a keyword gap analysis?
  26. What is a canonical issue?
  27. What should a technical SEO audit include?
  28. What are the most essential schema markups for a website?
  29. Explain the main components of Google’s Core Web Vitals.
  30. Why is website accessibility important?
  31. Can you explain the importance of content siloing?
  32. What are key issues to consider when helping a website perform a site migration?
  33. What is your process for helping a local business become more visible in search results?
  34. What method do you use to redirect a page?
  35. How have you used structured data to earn featured snippets?

Aside from the SEO interview questions that can help you better understand the candidate’s technical skills and experience, there are soft skills you’ll want to look for as well. These include communication skills, relationship skills, time management skills, prioritization skills, and work ethic.

For other potential digital marketing interview questions, check out our 15 Content Writer Interview Questions You Need to Ask.

Are you in need of an SEO agency? Request a free quote from us. We’d love to talk to you about your digital marketing needs!

FAQ: What interview questions reveal a candidate’s adaptability to different SEO challenges?

Ensuring that a potential hire possesses the capacity to navigate a range of SEO challenges is crucial for a successful partnership. Here are some insightful interview questions that offer a deep understanding of a candidate’s adaptability:

  1. Assessing Technical Agility: “Can you share an instance where you had to adapt to a major algorithm update swiftly? How did you handle the situation, and what were the outcomes?”
  2. Problem-Solving Scenarios: “Describe an instance when your search rankings suddenly declined and show us the process for identifying issues, making adjustments, and regaining their ranking.”
  3. Embracing Industry Changes: “SEO techniques continually evolve. How do you stay updated with the latest trends and integrate them into your strategies?”
  4. Handling Diverse Client Needs: “Can you provide an example of adapting your SEO approach to meet the unique requirements of different clients, industries, or niches?”
  5. Dealing with Unexpected Challenges: “Tell us about a time when an unforeseen technical issue arose during an SEO campaign. How did you tackle it while ensuring minimal impact on performance?”

Navigating the complexities of SEO requires more than just technical prowess. It demands the ability to adjust strategies, pivot tactics, and address challenges as they arise. Interviewers can gauge a candidate’s adaptability and problem-solving acumen by posing questions about real-world situations. These questions offer insights beyond theoretical knowledge, illuminating the candidate’s practical expertise and experience.

Step-by-Step Procedure: Unveiling Adaptability in SEO Candidates

  1. Understand the importance of adaptability in the SEO field.
  2. Identify the key aspects of adaptability, including technical agility, problem-solving, staying updated, a client-centric approach, and dealing with unexpected challenges.
  3. Develop an outline of questions that touch on each aspect.
  4. Begin the interview with a question that explores the candidate’s experience with algorithm updates and their response.
  5. Move on to questions that require the candidate to explain how they handled ranking drops and how they adapted their strategies.
  6. Inquire about the candidate’s methods for staying informed about industry changes and how they incorporate new trends.
  7. Pose questions that assess the candidate’s ability to tailor their approach to different client needs and industries.
  8. Explore scenarios where unexpected technical challenges emerged and how the candidate managed them.
  9. Use the candidate’s responses to evaluate their adaptability, problem-solving skills, and experience.
  10. Analyze the candidate’s ability to translate theoretical knowledge into practical strategies.
  11. Assess their communication skills in explaining complex scenarios.
  12. Reflect on how the candidate’s responses align with your company’s SEO challenges and objectives.
  13. Consider the candidate’s attitude toward learning and growth within a dynamic industry.
  14. Compare the candidate’s responses with other applicants’ responses to make an informed decision.
  15. Prioritize candidates who provide insightful, experience-based answers highlighting their adaptability and expertise.
  16. Consider a candidate’s ability to overcome challenges and maintain an effective work attitude.
  17. When making your final selection, evaluate a candidate based on their adaptability, problem-solving capabilities, and team dynamics.
  18. Extend the job offer to the candidate who showcases the highest level of adaptability and competence in handling SEO challenges.
  19. Provide feedback to candidates, regardless of the outcome, to foster a positive candidate experience.
  20. Continuously refine your interview process based on insights gained from candidates’ responses.

Bruce Clay is founder and president of Bruce Clay Inc., a global digital marketing firm providing search engine optimization, pay-per-click, social media marketing, SEO-friendly web architecture, and SEO tools and education. Connect with him on LinkedIn or through the BruceClay.com website.

See Bruce's author page for links to connect on social media.

Comments (53)
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53 Replies to “35 SEO Interview Questions You Must Ask a Prospective SEO Analyst”

Really great information ! Cheers !!

I need to prepare answers to these questions, if I were to be asked, I would not be surprised. Thanks for sharing.

As usual, this is a very thorough and helpful post, exactly what we have come to expect from Bruce and his team. Hiring the right people is often one of the toughest jobs as an agency, this list will definitely make this easier for out team. Thanks!

This is an excellent article! I need to review some of these responses. It has to be corrected if it doesn’t come out in two seconds.

I really love this article. These SEO interview questions help me in learning new things in digital marketing. Thanks for this article.

Content writing is an emerging skill to learn for future benefits. By the way, thank you for this article.

I am the new one in SEO, This question can help me in my interview.


Wow….. this blog is very nice.

I am following your blog regularly and got great information. Thanks for an insightful post. These tips are really helpful. Thanks a lot.Keep it up. Keep blogging!

Useful article, thanks for sharing

Great post I am also from Digital marketing & also I am doing graduation in software engineering so It’s very helpful for me to prepare myself for an interview. Thank you for posting this.

Excellent list of questions to ask the candidate whether he is right for the job or not. Thanks for the list, it will be helpful to me in taking the interview for the SEO profile.

Thank you for sharing such SEO’s list. This is very helpful for making understand Seo easily.

Wonderful information, indeed !

Great questions! I think i should start preparing my answers for this. This is so much helpful for self understanding as well. Thank you for sharing.

Amazing contents. This is awesome, you just gave me tons of ideas for my next interview. SEO is quite tricky so you really have to study so you can answer questions right. Of course, read an amazing blog like this so you won’t be speechless when you get asked unfamiliar questions.

I am 20 years doing SEO and i’m unable to answer some of these questions but im capable to get a lot of traffic from Google.

So, this is relative, but good post.

excellent open ended questions, great for long explanations

There should be one more question – “How to boost E-A-T?”

Great questions that assess skill and knowledge level!

I don’t have SEO knowledge, but after reading the content from this website, I will fulfill all tactics of SEO in my website. So thank you so much for giving such useful knowledge.

I need to prepare answers to these questions, if I were to be asked, I would not be surprised :)))

Good open-ended questions, room for interpretation. I like that it is based more on results than code, although if you answer them right, some code will show… I might take a few of these if you don’t mind…

Paula Allen

Bill, we don’t mind a bit. Good luck!

Great Questions! Glad I’m the one asking the questions! I think question 5 is a good to find out exactly what they were tasked with doing. I also think number 28 is important to find out their achievements and how you can push them to get even better accomplishments.

Nice question on seo.very informative post and helpful.

Extremely amazing questions for SEO interview. Useful for all :)
Thanks for sharing the questions list with us.

Nice post. It’s really helpful for beginners.

Thanks…Good stuff! I like the way you make it so simple.


I am new in SEO, This question help me in my interview.

Excellent. Just what I was looking for. I will certainly be using at 15 of these for my in-house interview tomorrow. What a relieve!

I don’t have knowledge about SEO but after reads all article from this website, I will implements all tactics of SEO in my website. So thank you so much for sharing such useful information.

Virginia Nussey

DRDO, our SEO tutorial is our recommended starting point for SEO education. Background, methodology, best practices AND TOOLS! http://www.bruceclay.com/seo/search-engine-optimization.htm

Great reference for people who want to know and learn more about SEO. These are the questions to ask!

As a beginner its very helpful to me for preparation of a job interview.

Thanks for this useful article.

Well thats pretty much good compilation of questions but i think there should be one more question that should ask about the learning from failure story because sometimes we get lessons from our failures instead of success.

As a SEO and internet marketer, I guess I should have answers to these questions, huh? :D What’s my favorite website? Uh…

Well, what is it Olle? BruceClay.com? :)

Kristi thank you for this post. I really like the “What SEO tools do you regularly use?” question. It definitely gives you a look inside of the agencies logic, and I think it really helps potential clients determine the level of experience of the company. Thanks!

wow another great post of questions to ask. I used one of your recent posts on the questions to ask for ppc. This was just as good for seo. Thanks again!

Asking all 30 questions could make for a long interview, but all are good choices. There does seem to be one omission though; a question targeted at local results is a must, in my opinion!

Useful informations.I will always remember it:)

also it’s very helpful for beginners

thanks for shearing such great information

Great post! I need to brush up on some of these answers. If it doesn’t come out in 2-seconds, it needs to be fixed.

Hahaha, love your attitude Scott! :)

Questions for experienced and freshers also to know the skills of candidate regarding knowledge of SEO.


Manuel Bluecaribu

Thank you for sharing our infographic!! Great post :-)

Sweet! I definitely using quite a few of these in interviews.


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