Nowadays, brands have to face and navigate fierce competition to ensure their online success. Search engine optimization (SEO) has emerged as a crucial factor in achieving visibility, driving organic traffic, and dominating a niche. Because SEO evolves at an unprecedented pace, it’s wise for professionals to stay ahead by learning from the industry’s brightest minds.
For that reason, I have put together a list of the top SEO experts in the world that you need to follow. These industry trailblazers have consistently demonstrated their expertise, provided groundbreaking insights, and reshaped the way we approach SEO strategies.
From technical wizards who decipher search algorithms to creative thinkers who harness the power of high-quality content, this esteemed group of experts represents the vanguard of SEO knowledge. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a seasoned SEO professional seeking to refine your skills or a budding entrepreneur looking to establish your digital footprint. Following their advice will help you gain useful insights into emerging trends, SEO best practices, and ingenious tactics for taking your online presence to new heights.
Who Is an SEO Expert?
An SEO expert is an individual who has an in-depth understanding of search engine optimization and its numerous components. These experts are skilled in and knowledgeable about search engines along with the most effective website and content optimization techniques. They can leverage this expertise to boost a particular website’s visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs), get more organic traffic, and thus increase its conversion rates.
Here are a few examples of what an SEO expert can do:
- Keyword research and analysis: SEO experts conduct thorough keyword research to find the most valuable keywords for a site. Through the analysis of search volume, competition, and user intent, they’re able to locate keywords that generate targeted traffic and align with the website’s goals.
- On-page optimization: An SEO expert can optimize on-page elements like meta tags, headings, content structure, and URL structure to make them search engine-friendly. They ensure each page contains relevant keywords, compelling content, and proper HTML formatting.
- Technical SEO: Experts in SEO have a strong grasp of technical stuff that can negatively impact a site’s performance and indexing. They’re able to enhance website speed, fix broken links, improve site architecture, and ensure mobile responsiveness, among other technical optimizations.
- Link building: Building a strong backlink profile is essential for SEO success. Experts in this field know how to acquire high-quality backlinks from authoritative websites. They develop link-building strategies, outreach to relevant websites, and establish relationships with other web publishers to generate valuable backlinks that boost a website’s authority.
- Content strategy: SEO experts understand how important high-quality and engaging content is. They create and execute content strategies that align with SEO goals. This includes incorporating targeted keywords, boosting readability, offering value to the desired audience, and other content marketing techniques that increase brand awareness.
- SEO analytics and reporting: SEO experts monitor website performance using various SEO automation and analytics platforms. They analyze keyword rankings, organic traffic, conversion rates, and other key metrics to determine the effectiveness of SEO strategies. It’s possible for them to make data-driven decisions and provide their clients or stakeholders with comprehensive reports.
Top SEO Professionals in the World
Below, you’ll find some of the best SEO experts in the globe right now.
1. Neil Patel
Neil Patel is a well-known name among the majority of digital marketers and SEO professionals. He is a successful entrepreneur, author, and speaker, recognized for his expertise in online marketing strategies and SEO.
Neil Patel has founded and co-founded several digital marketing companies, including Crazy Egg, Hello Bar, and Kissmetrics, which have become popular tools in the industry. These ventures have provided him with hands-on experience with various aspects of digital marketing, including SEO. He also created Ubersuggest, a free keyword research tool with some of the most affordable paid plans.
Patel is known for his data-driven approach to SEO and his ability to analyze and interpret complex marketing data. He emphasizes the importance of using analytics to make informed decisions and optimize marketing campaigns for better results.
Neil Patel shares his knowledge and expertise through his blog, where he regularly publishes articles on a wide range of digital marketing topics. They include SEO, content marketing, social media, and conversion optimization. His content is known for its practicality, step-by-step guides, and case studies, making it accessible and actionable for readers.
In addition to his blog and even speaking engagements, Patel also hosts a popular YouTube channel and podcast called Marketing School Podcast. Through the podcast, he and Eric Siu (a business leader) discuss various aspects of digital marketing. Neil Patel also appears in numerous interviews with industry experts.
Neil Patel has been recognized for his contributions to the industry, receiving accolades such as being named a top influencer on Forbes, Entrepreneur, and Wall Street Journal. His expertise, thought leadership, and consultancy services (through NP Digital) have helped lots of businesses increase traffic and achieve better conversions through SEO.
2. Danny Sullivan
Danny Sullivan is a prominent figure and industry veteran in SEO and search engine marketing or SEM, a term he popularized. He’s widely recognized as one of the foremost authorities on search engines and has played a significant role in shaping the industry.
Danny Sullivan started Search Engine Watch in 1996 and later sold it in 1997. He also co-founded Search Engine Land, a leading online publication that covers news related to search engines, SEO, and digital marketing. Sullivan previously served as the Chief Content Officer for Third Door Media, the parent company of Search Engine Land and MarTech.
This SEO expert is also known for creating one of the earliest search marketing trade shows, called Search Engine Strategies. In 2017, Danny Sullivan joined Google as a Public Liaison for Search.
In this role, he acted as a bridge between Google and the webmaster community, providing information, answering questions, and helping to address concerns related to search engine algorithms and updates. Throughout his career, Danny Sullivan has been instrumental in educating and informing the industry about search engine technology, best practices, and industry trends.
3. Brian Dean
Accomplishments: Backlinko (founder)
Brian Dean is a prominent figure in the SEO industry and is widely recognized as an expert in the field. He’s the founder of Backlinko, a popular SEO blog known for its in-depth, data-driven, and actionable content.
Brian Dean has gained a reputation for his expertise in link building, on-page optimization, and content marketing strategies. One of the notable contributions of Brian Dean is the “Skyscraper Technique,” a link-building strategy he introduced.
This technique involves creating high-quality content that is better than existing resources, reaching out to relevant websites, and acquiring backlinks. The Skyscraper Technique has been widely adopted by SEO professionals and has proven to be successful in generating quality backlinks.
Dean also founded Exploding Topics, a platform for identifying rapidly growing topics in advance. He frequently shares his knowledge and insights through blog posts, videos, and case studies on Backlinko. His content is known for its thorough research, step-by-step instructions, and real-world examples. In other words, both beginners and experienced SEO practitioners can benefit from it.
4. Rand Fishkin
Accomplishments: Moz (co-founder, former CEO), SparkToro (co-founder)
Rand Fishkin is another well-established figure in the SEO industry and a leading SEO expert. He is the co-founder and former CEO of Moz, a popular SEO software company. Rand Fishkin has made significant contributions to the field of SEO through his extensive knowledge, thought leadership, and unique strategies.
Fishkin is highly regarded for his expertise in search engine optimization and his ability to communicate complex SEO concepts in a clear and understandable manner. He has authored several books, including “Lost and Founder: A Painfully Honest Field Guide to the Startup World,” which provides insights into the challenges of building and scaling a business.
Fishkin’s contributions extend beyond his work at Moz. He’s also the co-founder of SparkToro, a software company that focuses on audience intelligence and market research. Through SparkToro, he provides valuable data and insights to marketers, helping them understand their target audience, win them, and increase their marketing ROI. Rand Fishkin is active on social media platforms, where he shares his thoughts, industry updates, and helpful SEO tips.
Rand Fishkin is also a renowned speaker and has delivered keynote presentations at numerous industry conferences and events, sharing his insights and perspectives on SEO, digital marketing, and entrepreneurship. He is known for his engaging and informative speaking style and is thus a sought-after speaker in the industry.
5. Matt Diggity
Accomplishments: Diggity Marketing (founder)
Matt Diggity is a top expert when it comes to search engine optimization. He’s an entrepreneur and the founder of Diggity Marketing, The Search Initiative, and Authority Builders. Matt Diggity has gained recognition for his expertise in building and scaling affiliate websites using SEO strategies.
Through his various ventures, Matt Diggity provides SEO services, training, and tools to help businesses improve their organic search rankings and get more conversions. He has spoken at industry conferences and has been featured in leading SEO publications.
Matt Diggity is known for sharing his knowledge through his blog, podcasts, and YouTube channel. He covers topics related to SEO, affiliate marketing, and online business strategies. His approach to SEO often involves testing and data-driven methodologies to achieve meaningful results.
6. Joost de Valk
Accomplishments: Yoast (founder)
Joost de Valk, commonly known as Yoast, is a prominent SEO expert and WordPress professional. He is the founder and former Chief Product Officer of Yoast, an SEO plugin, and also a developer of popular tools for WordPress websites.
Yoast SEO, the flagship product of Yoast, is one of the most widely used SEO plugins for WordPress. It provides users with a range of features and optimizations to improve their website’s visibility in search engine results. The plugin offers tools for on-page SEO, content analysis, XML sitemap generation, and more.
Joost de Valk is recognized for his expertise in SEO and his contributions to the WordPress community. He has widely shared his knowledge of SEO, content optimization, and website performance. He also writes regularly on the Yoast blog, where he shares updates, tips, and best practices for SEO.
In addition to his work with Yoast, Joost de Valk is involved in various initiatives and projects related to WordPress and SEO. He has been actively engaged in advocating for open-source software and contributing to the development of the WordPress platform.
7. Loren Baker
Accomplishments: Search Engine Journal (founder)
Loren Baker is a well-known figure in the field of digital marketing and SEO. He’s the founder of Search Engine Journal (SEJ), one of the most popular online publications when it comes to SEO matters.
Loren Baker launched Search Engine Journal in 2003 as a platform to provide industry news, insights, and educational resources for digital marketers and SEO professionals. The publication covers a wide range of topics, including SEO, content marketing, social media, PPC advertising, and more. SEJ has become a trusted source of information and has a large community of readers and contributors.
Loren Baker has a deep understanding of SEO and digital marketing strategies. He has a vast network within the industry and is known for his ability to bring together industry experts to share their insights and knowledge.
In addition to his work with Search Engine Journal, Loren Baker has been involved in other ventures and initiatives within the digital marketing space. He has contributed to industry publications, provided consulting services, and has been active in the SEO community.
8. Vanessa Fox
Accomplishments: Google Webmaster Central (software engineer), KeyLime Toolbox (co-founder)
Vanessa Fox is recognized for her expertise in understanding search engine behavior, user experience, and website optimization. She has a strong background in search engine technology and data analysis.
Fox worked at Google, where she helped develop the Google Webmaster Central tool. This tool provides website owners with insights and data about their sites’ performance in search results. Her experience at Google gave her valuable insights into search engine algorithms and best practices for website optimization.
Vanessa Fox is also the author of the book “Marketing in the Age of Google.” Her book provides practical guidance on how to optimize websites for better visibility in search engines. She emphasizes the importance of understanding user intent and providing valuable content that meets users’ needs.
Vanessa Fox is also a contributing writer on various well-established SEO publications, including Search Engine Land. What’s more, she also co-founded Keylime Toolbox. This is a software tool that offers key SEO metrics and analytics to improve traffic using unpaid strategies.
9. Aaron Wall
Accomplishments: SEObook (founder)
Aaron Wall is the founder of SEObook, an influential online resource for SEO education and training. Started by Aaron Wall in 2003, SEObook provides a wealth of information, guides, and tools related to SEO.
The platform offers tips on various aspects of SEO, including keyword research, link building, and on-page optimization. It has been recognized as one of the go-to resources for SEO professionals and marketers seeking to improve their understanding of search engine optimization.
Aaron Wall is highly identified for his expertise in SEO and his ability to analyze search engine algorithms and trends. He has shared his knowledge through blog posts, industry publications, and interviews. He has also developed tools and software to assist with SEO analysis and optimization.
10. Cyrus Shephard
Accomplishments: Moz (SEO contributor)
Cyrus Shepard is a known SEO expert who has worked with Moz, a leading SEO software company. He held the position of Director of Audience Development and later Chief SEO Strategist.
Shepherd contributed significantly to Moz’s blog on SEO topics and educational resources. His articles and presentations are highly regarded in the SEO community.
In addition to his work at Moz, Cyrus Shepard has also provided informative SEO and content marketing tips online. Cyrus Shepard’s contributions to the SEO field include insights into on-page optimization, keyword research, link building, and content strategy. He has also provided guidance on technical SEO aspects such as website structure, crawlability, and site speed optimization.
Other than that, this SEO expert also founded Zyppy SEO. This is his SEO company which helps people bring in more traffic to their sites using the latest SEO developments.
Who Is the Best SEO Expert?
Determining the “best” SEO expert is subjective and can vary based on factors like their experience, successes, and testimonials from clients they’ve worked with. There are numerous highly skilled and knowledgeable SEO experts in the industry. Each one of them has their own areas of expertise and specialties.
Some of the top SEO experts include Danny Sullivan, Brian Dean, and Neil Patel, among others. These individuals have made significant contributions to how we understand SEO today through their knowledge, experience, and thought leadership.
Who Is the Richest SEO in the World?
It can be challenging to determine the exact net worth of individuals in the SEO industry since their financial information is often not publicly disclosed. Furthermore, the wealth of an SEO professional can come from various sources. These include owning top SEO publications or agencies, consulting services, SEO software tool development, speaking engagements, or other business ventures.
That being said, Neil Patel has an estimated net worth of around 30 million. This makes him the (potentially) richest SEO expert in the world.
Is SEO Still a Good Career?
Yes, SEO is still a good choice for a career. In fact, as online businesses continue to grow and digital marketing becomes increasingly important, the demand for SEO professionals and their services remains high.
Organic search traffic from search engines like Google continues to be a significant source of website traffic and customer acquisition for many businesses. Also, SEO is an ever-evolving field, thanks to continuous updates in search engine algorithms, emerging technologies, and changes in user behavior. Professionals experienced in such matters will always come in handy in the foreseeable future.
Can SEO Make You a Millionaire?
Yes, you can become a millionaire through SEO. But it’s worth noting that it isn’t a guaranteed path to becoming a millionaire on its own. SEO is a marketing strategy that aims to improve a website’s visibility in search engine results, attract organic traffic, and increase conversions.
Achieving millionaire status involves various factors beyond SEO, such as the nature of your business, market demand, competition, product or service quality, pricing, marketing strategy, and business management. SEO can truly contribute to your business growth and financial success, but you need to view it as a part of a broader business strategy.
Keeping up with the top SEO experts in the industry is a great strategy to stay informed about the most recent trends, techniques, and best practices in search engine optimization. These professionals have a deep understanding of search engine algorithms, keyword research, on-page optimization, link building, and other aspects of SEO.
But don’t just be a follower. It would be wise to implement all the useful advice you get on your brand. That’s how you can achieve success yourself too through SEO.