Top Countries for SEO Careers in Europe: 2024 Rankings

The United Kingdom is the best country in Europe to work in search engine optimisation (SEO), a new study has found.

SEO platform Ahrefs analysed 17 European countries based on six industry factors, including the average annual salary, the number of jobs and companies per 100,000 people, and the average company rating. The countries were indexed and ranked out of 100 to reveal the best places for an SEO career.

The UK topped the study as the best country in Europe to work in SEO with a score of 79.43 out of 100. The average salary for professionals sits at €49,647 (£42,582) per annum, the sixth highest in the continent, while directors earn a median annual wage of €62,916 (£53,963). The UK has the joint-highest rate of companies in the entire continent, with 5,033 companies or 0.52 per 100,00 residents.

The Netherlands fell just short of the top spot in the study, being recognised as the second-best country in Europe for an SEO career with a score of 72.51. Locals have access to more jobs than anywhere else in Europe, averaging a job count of 0.91 per 100,000 residents. As well as being an excellent country for opportunities, the Netherlands also offers professionals the ninth-highest average annual salary in Europe of €46,839 for around 30 hours per week.

“With SEO writers, analysts, marketers, and more becoming increasingly sought after by businesses across Europe, it is no surprise specialist SEO companies are rising in popularity,” said Tim Soulo, CMO at Ahrefs. 

“As businesses look to leverage SEO to enhance in-house digital marketing strategies by generating more website traffic and improving search rankings, more and more firms are (Read more...) industry professionals to achieve these goals. Europe seems to be a premier destination for SEO professionals, with countries like the United Kingdom and the Netherlands proving to be the top locations to carve out a career in SEO. The industry also ranks extremely highly for employee satisfaction, with an average rating of no lower than 4.5 out of five found across Europe in the study.”

Ireland is the third-best country in Europe for SEO professionals, ranking high with a score of 69.14 thanks to the number of companies and average employer ratings. With 310 companies nationwide at a rate of 0.52 per 100,000 people, only the UK is home to the same number of businesses per capita than Ireland. The average rating for these companies is 4.83 out of 5 based on 148 employee reviews. People within Ireland’s industry work an average of 35 hours a week and earn an average annual salary of €44,151.

Denmark claimed fourth spot on the study of Europe’s best countries to work in SEO, scoring 61.31 out of 100. The country was propelled towards the top of the ranking thanks to Europe’s highest average salary. Industry professionals earn an annual average wage of €133,409 in Denmark, almost three times the European average of €49,354, while a director’s median salary is €210,658. Despite high-income ratings, Denmark ranked below three other countries due to fewer opportunities. The country is home to only 60 companies, while the job count nationwide averages 0.56 per 100,000 residents.

Germany rounds out the five best countries in Europe to explore an SEO career, securing a score of 61.16. The average salary of someone working in the industry is €79,596. At the same time, more senior figures like directors earn an estimated €125,525 per year. The country is also home to 872 companies, each averaging a rating of 4.79 out of 5 based on over 500 reviews.

Switzerland also ranks as one of Europe’s top locations to work in SEO, with a score of 61.08. Taking sixth place in the study, Switzerland has the highest median salary for managers of any other country in Europe, with €97,670. Despite only having 84 companies, the country averages a near-perfect rating of 4.98 out of 5 for related businesses nationwide.

Belgium is the seventh-best country in Europe for an SEO career, scoring 60.99 out of 100. The country has the fourth highest job count across the continent, with 0.64 per 100,000 residents, and only the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Germany have more. The average employee in Belgium earns €53,559 each year.

Austria ranks eighth among Europe’s best countries to work in SEO, with a score of 51.19. The European country is home to 82 companies and was rated high in the study thanks to impeccable employee reviews. Industry companies were given a perfect average five-star rating as per 28 reviews. The average salary for professionals is €29,986 in Austria, one of the lowest in Europe.

Sweden is also recognised as one of Europe’s top spots for an SEO career, securing ninth place in the new study thanks to its score of 46.99. Professionals in Sweden take home an average of €49,484 annually, working an estimated 35 hours per week. Approximately 141 companies are registered in Sweden, averaging 0.42 companies per 100,000 residents.

Portugal is the final country to be named among Europe’s best places to work in SEO, scoring 44.89. Industry professionals take home an average of €54,511 per year in Portugal, the fourth highest salary among the top-performing countries. Job opportunities are less common, however, with a job count of 0.42 per 100,000 residents. Despite this,  companies remain highly rated in the country, with an average score of 4.82 out of five based on 67 company reviews.

Table: The best countries in Europe to work in SEO 

Ranking Country Workweek Hours Population SEO Companies SEO Average Salary/Yr (€) Overall
1 United Kingdom 33 67,894,885 5,033 49,647 79.43
2 Netherlands 30 17,656,123 175 46,839 72.51
3 Ireland 35 5,080,101 310 44,151 69.14
4 Denmark 34 5,931,256 60 133,409 61.31
5 Germany 34 83,266,539 872 79,596 61.16
6 Switzerland 36 8,835,496 84 83,148 61.08
7 Belgium 34 11,707,335 80 53,559 60.99
8 Austria 33 8,971,513 82 29,986 51.19
9 Sweden 35 10,655,859 141 49,484 46.99
10 Portugal 38 10,230,850 105 54,511 44.89

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