23 Nov Top SEO Gurus You Should Follow As Recommended by SEO Professionals
If you have been in the SEO industry for quite some time, you know that there are some SEO professionals that stand out among the rest. They are probably known for their exemplary contribution to the industry and such.
Sometimes they are hailed as the “SEO gurus”, they are popular among SEO circles. They are often an information resource of the industry and they continue to inspire others in the field as well. Are there SEO gurus that you follow? These SEO professionals share who their favorite SEO gurus are.
1. As CEO of Globe Runner, Eric McGehearty goes above and beyond in order to achieve quantifiable results for clients. Founded in 2009 during a devastating economic slump, Globe Runner is one of the fastest-growing online marketing companies in Texas, and now employs a team of twenty elite individuals.
Beyond direct results, Eric pushes the boundaries when it comes to what a business can achieve in the public sphere. He’s a firm believer in conscious capitalism, and works to ensure that anyone in association with Globe Runner gains from that relationship – whether it’s a client, an employee or a vendor.
It would have to be Bill Hartzer. Bill originally helped me get into this business and eventually I had the good fortune to be able to bring him on to our team as our company grew. He's, by far, one of the most knowledgeable SEO Practitioners I have ever encountered.
2. Kent Lewis is President and Founder of Anvil, a consultancy specializing in measurable marketing that moves businesses forward. Under his leadership, Anvil has been recognized as an Inc. 5000 fastest growing private company as well as most admired, most philanthropic and a fastest growing company by and Portland Business Journal.
Lewis’s industry recognition and awards include Portland Business Journal’s Top 40 Under 40, Top 25 Most Influential Pay-per-Click Experts and American Marketing Association Marketer of the Year.
He is co-founder of a variety of organizations, including career community pdxMindShare, eROI and SEMpdx, a Portland-area professional trade association for search marketers.
There are too many, but Rand Fishkin is my guy. His first major keynote was at SearchFest in Portland in 2006 and he rocked it. His white board Friday’s are always informative and entertaining and he’s still one of the most visionary thinkers in the SEO world. Perhaps I appreciate he’s more strategic in his approach and tells amazing stories. There are many brilliant SEO technicians, but they are too far in the weeds for my taste.
Aaron Wall, without a doubt. He was my first mentor and one of the best who knows how the world works.
I would recommend Matthew Green. I’ve had the pleasure to work with some great consultants over the years and he’s by far one of the best. He is very thorough and especially effective at building digital strategies that will integrate into businesses. If I needed SEO help, he’s who I call.
I definitely can’t recommend only one. There are so many that I think always bring brilliance. I mentioned Cyrus; I’d add AJ Kohn, Dan Shure, Mike King, Bill Slawski, Rand Fishkin, Ross Hudgens, Matt Brown, Marshall Simmonds, Dr. Pete, Jon Cooper… the list just goes on and on. My favorite thing about this industry are the thousands of truly smart SEOs who happily share their discoveries and thoughts on a daily basis. This industry would be nothing without that kind of peer support.
6. Alex Johnson is the founder of ThinkTraffic.co.uk, a UK based SEO and online PR agency who specialize in working with small businesses. Alex loves helping small businesses to get started online, he is also an expert in traffic generation and conversion rate optimization and loves every aspect of online business.
I quite like Neil Patel's blog (Quicksprout) as his posts are very actionable and he lays out his strategies in a really easy to follow way. Although I have to admit, his older posts were more helpful for me personally. Some of his guides I think could be more concise, but they are still very good.
7. Danny Cave is a data driven digital marketing and Web analytics expert and leader.
Having spoken at events across the UK and USA on topics of data driven SEO, data journalism and growth marketing he is a proponent of holistic digital marketing, innovation in SEO and high growth marketing. You can read his blog growthbydata.com or follow his tweets at @dancave.
Based on my predilection for data driven SEO, Jono Alderson is a guy with a bird's eye view of the SEO industry, and particularly on the real data that drives it. Also, he is a kind chap, who is happy to listen to and chat about SEO.
The person I respect most in the industry is probably Markus Tober from Searchmetrics. He started working in digital environments doing scraping and then went on to envisage and create the whole Searchmetrics platform.
Tricky question as I don’t think it would be possible to name just one worth recommending. Everyone with any interest in SEO probably already knows the “big names” so I don’t imagine they need me to add any more recognition as they already do a great job of promoting themselves.
I’ve met and had the pleasure to work with a number of very talented SEOs over the years though – many of whom don’t have the time to run personal blogs to share their knowledge or accomplishments or speak at conferences, but who deliver some outstanding work for their clients.
I would always recommend reading/listening to/discussing with many different SEOs to get as broad a view as possible and then creating your own interpretation and viewpoint – better to blaze a trail than follow a path.
11. Logan Lenz is a serial entrepreneur that innovates within the music and web industries. His first company is called Endagon Enterprises, which is a full-service web agency that also builds its own web properties.
He also owns and operates a humor t-shirt website called Iced Tees and have helped to start a handful of other businesses.
I can’t not cite Rand Fishkin here. He continues to impress me week after week with his timely Whiteboard Friday topics.
He has been working in various digital roles across Europe since 2007, working for B2B, B2C, in-house and digital agencies. He has expertise in SEO, social and digital change management and is passionate about web analytics.
This one has to go to Matt Cutts. He would probably not want the title, but he’s one of the people that has done most for SEO. Not only helping Google create a better engine – which, by the end of the day is what we all want – but also helping webbies to create better sites and search experiences.
13. Lars Bachmann has been working with marketing and SEO for over 10 years. The first couple of years in the advertising business, and later on, 7 years as an SEO consultant and entrepreneur.
Now Lars Bachmann works as Online marketing manager at Cykelpartner.dk which is Denmark's largest webshop in the bike industry.
You can visit his blog in Danish at www.larsbachmann.dk
I won’t recommend one, because there are so many aspects of SEO. Some are specialized in technical SEO, some in copywriting, some in linkbuilding or content marketing etc. If you are new to SEO, I will recommend to visit sites as moz.com and Quicksprout.com, and then read the articles and often you can find interesting people in the comment section.
Matt worked at one of the largest SEO agencies in the world as a senior manager and helped over 2500 businesses grow and improve their marketing.
Recently, Matt opened his own agency, Stack Digital, where the focus is entirely on providing exceptional business growth results to clients using multiple marketing channels.
Aw wow … just one. I’m going to hurt some feelings with this, probably. Let me give this a shot in the best way I can. I think if you’re not following Patrick Coombe or Matthew Barby you’re missing out just like those who aren’t reading Joel K or Karl Sakas. However, if I had to give one SEO guru to follow, I’d say one of: Takeshi Young, Dr. Pete, AJ Ghergich, Gianluca Fiorelli or Aleyda Solis. Sorry – I couldn’t possibly give just one answer to a question like that.
I would not recommend any SEO gurus and would encourage you to always question the SEO-types and the advice they give you. From my experience they tell you to do something, charge you high fees for that, and then come back 6 months later when Google dinged you. Of course, they’re ready to take more of your money to “fix” the problem. Why do we put up with these people? I have no idea.
I would recommend Matthew Barby for the simple reason that he produces excellent tutorial videos around content marketing, and actually offers actionable advice rather than theory.
17. David Vallance is a writer who fell into digital marketing after he got bored brewing, tasting and writing about beer.
He marries a pragmatic approach to link building with a focus on genuinely valuable content to drive long term growth for online businesses.
David joined the newly rebranded agency Digital Impact in 2014 and set about defining a brand voice and iconic content style across its various platforms.
I’m a big fan of Brian Dean. I think he approaches things in a very pragmatic way and always shows what’s going on behind the scenes. Rand Fishkin is also very impressive. Part because of his obvious mountain of knowledge and part because he’s a genuinely brilliant presenter. However, the ridiculousness of his mustache is making him harder to take seriously.
Chris has been with the company since March of 2002 and has over 20 years’ experience in marketing, sales and communications.
Over the years at WebRanking, Chris’ role has evolved to include overseeing the SEO strategy for a majority of WebRanking’s accounts, along with providing content strategy, social media consulting and social media paid advertising for their clientele.
Wow, there are so many talented SEO colleagues that I have a great amount of respect for that it is difficult to select just one. Plus these men and women have enough name recognition that they probably don’t need a shout out from me.
I’d say that the true SEO Gurus are often the ones you don’t know about. These are the people in the trenches, providing the day to day SEO to their clients. Not everybody has the time to blog about their accomplishments or have the personality to speak at conferences.
I often find it is the attendees you meet at conferences or local SEO events that are the true gurus and the ones that are the greatest sources for new insights, techniques and strategies for SEO. They really are doing some mind blowing things that are only known by their clients, bosses and a handful of colleagues.
Gravity’s clients include Fortune 500 companies, entertainment, B2B, e-commerce, and non-profit. Couzin and Grappone co-wrote Search Engine Optimization: An Hour a Day (Wiley, 2006, 2008, 2011) and Five Stars: Putting Online Reviews to Work for Your Business (Wiley, 2014).
Not exactly an SEO guru, but, I’m a fan of JohnMu (John Mueller), a Googler who has regular webmaster hangouts where you can actually get questions.
20. Colin Cheng is the Senior Marketing Manager at MintTwist – a full-service digital agency in London. Colin works on several digital marketing projects from local search campaigns for boutique businesses to international campaigns for multi-national brands.
He has worked in digital marketing since leaving university but has been building websites and running blogs since he was 11. Colin’s main digital marketing interests are SEO, digital advertising, analytics and content creation.
My SEO guru to recommend is Lisa Myers who is the CEO and founder of Verve Search. I’ve always been massively impressed with Verve’s no-nonsense, results-driven approach to SEO and they’re always refining their SEO strategies and tactics. Lisa is a great ambassador for the SEO industry and I have huge admiration for her.
I’ve done a lot of work with Neil Patel and he is definitely someone that shares fantastic content in the online marketing space.
Aleyda Solis has made a name for herself as an authority on international SEO and I think a big reason for this is her ability to create simple yet effective content, such as this hreflang generator. I would also pick Bill Slawski, founder of SEO by the Sea who painstakingly sifts through patent filings and white papers from search engines, to give SEOs an insight into what developments might be coming their way!
Again. Eric Ward. He’s the one that really impressed me early on. Link building is the one task that will challenge the hell out of you as an SEO.
24. Michael Cottam is an independent SEO consultant based in Portland, Oregon. He’s also the founder of Visual Itineraries, a service for travel agents to help show a destination, hotels, sights, etc. to a client.
He’s also a Moz Associate, helping with questions in Moz Q&A and contributing posts to the main Moz blog.
In his free time, he enjoys motorcycles (racing, touring, and watching MotoGP), scuba diving, traveling, and photography
Richard Baxter. Incredibly smart, builds (and shares) some killer SEO tools, and a terrific presenter.
I would definitely recommend following Rand Fishkin. That’s an absolute no-brainer. But since he’s 100% white hat, I can also recommend to follow Glen Allsopp from http://www.viperchill.com/ to learn more about the darker side of SEO. But don’t get me wrong, I’m not advising you to go black hat, I just think that you should be aware of these tactics and keep in mind that your competitors might be using them.
Having worked for many years for Yell Group, provider of Yellow Pages in the UK, he set up Aqueous in 2010.
He has an MBA from Henley Management School, has been a Chartered Marketer for the past decade and is a Certified Adwords professional.
Jonathan is also a public speaker on SEO and Digital Marketing and regularly lectures and trains on all aspects of Digital Marketing.
I have to say Rand Fishkin of Moz. Apart from the fact that he is very watchable on his Whiteboard Friday’s he’s essentially a marketer at heart. If the internet didn’t exist he’d still be successful because of his marketing approach and that’s a great quality to have.
27. Peter Attia is the Director of Content and Search at Modernize and has been in the online marketing world for over a decade.
He’s been a founding member of multiple multimillion dollar businesses and has worked closely with multiple Fortune 100 companies.
There’s no one person I could ever recommend and I don’t think anyone should ever hold an “expert” on a pedestal. Everything should be taken with a grain of salt to develop your own opinions. To follow one industry leader and act as if they could never do or say anything wrong would only be detrimental to your career.
She has more than 10 years experience in the digital marketing and software development industry.
Carla is originally from San Diego, California but lives in Argentina as an Expat.
I really like the work Marie Haynes is doing. She is so clear and thorough and her insight is critical for us in the industry. I also really appreciate Bill Slawski’s work. And last but definitely not the least is MOZ in general for creating serious information that is vital in industry.
He is also the developer of a small iOS app called Write365, which gives users creative writing prompts. He occasionally writes on his own site here.
Lately, I’ve been enjoying @analyticsnerd and his content on Optimize Smart. He does a really good job of taking all the complexity of Google Analytics and breaking it down so it is easy to apply to your own projects. I always learn something new from his site. Generally, I’ll read a piece by him a couple of times and learn something new each time. Definitely check him out for all your analytics tracking needs.
30. Adam J Thompson has 10 years of experience in digital marketing and internet business, having owned several online business ventures and worked with clients from a variety of industries across the globe.
Adam founded RYP Marketing in 2006 with the goal of providing highly effective online marketing services to small and medium sized companies.
Today he plays an active role in running the company, with a special focus on SEO strategy and helping clients increase website conversion rates.
Adam specializes in the following areas:
– Search Engine Optimization
– Conversion Rate Optimization
– Web Analytics
For the last five years, he’s focused specifically on nonprofit fundraising – having launched websites, CRO campaigns, and digital media programs that have generated returns often unseen in this space.
Prior to that, Eric managed eCommerce websites, built an online auction system, and engineered a social media analytics program back when social media monitoring was the wild west of the online data space.
Ian Lurie of Portent in Seattle is without a doubt one of the most impressive marketers I’ve ever met. Ian’s presentations and blog posts are typically technical and highly actionable, but also driven by a strong philosophy and unique voice.
In addition, I often laugh at the jokes and commentary he intersperses throughout them. I’ve had the opportunity to speak to Ian briefly a few times and visited Portent’s offices once, and I couldn’t say enough about how impressed I continually am by what I see of both Ian’s and Portent’s work.
Tara is a prolific content creator, having written thousands of blog posts, small business websites and other inbound marketing content through the course of her career.
Tara enjoys blogging about SEO copywriting, content management, corporate culture, personal branding, networking and LinkedIn.
Sujan Patel. He’s taught be everything about SEO and digital marketing for the past 6 years. He’s introduced me to top marketers around the web and he’s always killing it!
He is the former CEO of The Ocean Agency (acquired in 2014), a digital marketing agency in Chicago that worked with some of the biggest brands in the world including: Walgreens, Sprite, Toyota, CareerBuilder and BlackBerry.
He has been interviewed on NBC, CBS, ABC, Inc Magazine, Website Magazine, and Crain’s Business Chicago.
Neil Patel is the man! Smart guy with great ideas. He used to run an SEO company, now he’s worth millions.
He is constantly keeping up with the latest Google algorithms and analyzing new tools to help ProFromGo’s clients succeed.
Not only does he have an eye for great marketing campaigns, but he also takes great pride in being able to track the dollar return on each one.
Chris’s love of search marketing may only be surpassed by his enthusiasm for fitness and health. He can often be found running or biking on the South Side River Trail or lifting heavy things at LA Fitness.
It’s a toss up between Wil Reynolds of Seer Interactive and Mike King of iPullRank. I feel as if they’re both more “traditional marketers” stuck inside an SEO’s body. Reading their websites got me thinking beyond just rank & traffic. Their articles really take me outside the “SEO box” and let me see the bigger picture: earning revenue.
Brian Dean. He is very unique and practical in his approach. Even if you already know all his techniques, you can still learn things in the HOW TO.
Dan has been working in the SEO industry since 2011, working on all types of projects from large eCommerce and enterprise sites to SMB and local trade sites.
He also dabbles in videography under the name Callis Makes Films.
38. Gareth Cartman is Director of Digital Marketing at CLD, a boutique UK digital performance agency based near London.
He’s been in SEO and digital marketing for 15 years, working across publishing, HR and technology while running his own sites and blogs.
He’s also a dad of two talkative young children, and for his sins he’s an Everton and a Boston Red Sox fan. http://www.cleverlittledesign.co.uk
Michael Martinez. There’s no hype, no smoke or mirrors, just the theory and the application. But I’d urge SEOs to move beyond the SEO field and read thought leaders in other industries. I always read Laurie Ruettimann, for instance, she cuts your BS and makes you think.
39. Patrick Coombe is an internet marketer by profession, and have been self-employed for over 5 years.
Past accomplishments include US Navy veteran of the USS Boxer also studied Computer Science at McCann School of Business in Pottsville, PA. (from about).
It would be easy to say someone like Rand Fishkin or Neil Patel, but for me it is a gentleman named Abhi or sometimes referred to as “Bloghue.” I’ve known Abhi now for at least 5 years and time after time, he has impressed me with his wide range of knowledge.
When I am in a jam, he is always the guy that I’m Skyping with at 3am. From eCommerce development to conversion rate optimization to network administration to SEO this gentleman is truly a guru in every sense of the word.
It’s funny because most of the self-proclaimed gurus with flashy websites and affiliate links are a lot of times not that impressive once you start talking to them. It is always people like Abhi who are very humble and quietly banking that are the most impressive.
Marcus has worked in and around search for over 15 years and focuses on search strategy, SEO, PPC and helping business implement effective, unified digital marketing campaigns.
There are a lot of good folks out there. When it comes to gurus, I am not really sure. The really big names are not truly gigging SEO’s any longer so I am not sure I would throw out a recommendation there. I like some of the guys in the middle. Folks that are still doing client work and sharing their insights from the trenches. I think Phil Rozek has the best local SEO blog going. He constantly publishes great content that can help real small businesses so happy to throw a shout out to Phil.
My go-to expert on SEO is Rand Fishkin of Moz. He and his team offer the best, most understandable SEO training I’ve seen. Its breadth and depth are truly impressive.
He has written several best-selling books on online marketing, including books on content marketing, landing page optimization, social media, blogging and more (from About).
Rand Fishkin at Moz. He’s been around for a while and really knows his stuff.
I’ve met so many amazing SEOs that I’m going to cheat on this question and name a few of them.
• Kevin Jones is the Technical Director at Tecmark and he taught me SEO from scratch some 6 years ago. He’s a brilliant problem solver and although he isn’t directly involved with SEO at Tecmark any more, he’d always be someone whose opinion on an SEO matter I would value.
• Paddy Moogan literally wrote the book on link building and is a fountain of knowledge when it comes to this stuff.
• Hannah Smith is brilliant when it comes to content and she and the team at Distilled have carried out some incredibly successful campaigns
• Aleyda Solis is (apart from a prolific speaker!) incredibly knowledgeable in SEO terms and, in particular, with on site international SEO.
If you’re setting up sites for multiple country or language targeting, you’ll want to go through some of her past presentations.
For 5+ years he’s been known internationally for writing here on SEO 2.0 and blogs of Datadial.net, Positionly, Ahrefs, Hubspot, Google Blogoscoped among others (from About).
Oh my. I could provide you with a huge list. My time is limited today. That’s why I will recommend only one: Brian Dean of Backlinko – the man who has inspired me most in recent years.
Over the years he built, bought and sold over 30 blogs and websites, and he founded Daily Blog Tips in 2006 to share the tips and tricks he was learning along the way.
NeilPatel.com. He is by far the person with the best SEO and marketing mind I have come across, and he is also humble and willing to help people.
46. Adam Riemer has been doing Marketing and Online Marketing for over a decade.
He has written articles that have been published in DMNews and many other well known publications, he’s also been booked to speak at shows like Affiliate Summit, Search Engine Strategies, Realtors.org, Think Tank and many more (from About).
There isn’t one and nobody is a Guru. Everyone has strengths and talents. I know some amazing content producers that can’t do anything from a tech side. I know some people that can find amazing flaws or things you wouldn’t think of with code, but they can’t create content to save their life. Know what you’re good at and focus on it.
I suck at tech…I can do most of it, but I hate it and am nowhere near the best. That’s why I have friends who I have help with the tech SEO pieces when I do audits. The client gets everything they need and it’s always high quality. My strengths are in content creation and link building and I’m honest about that.