If I Were an SEO Dude

Let’s be honest. In a world where 77% of the industry is dominated by males, being a chick in SEO is quite an experience. Surrounded by a bunch of smart dudes who like the same stuff I do is pretty cool and I probably wouldn’t have realized this without the help of good ol’ Twitter. I spend a lot of time observing on Twitter, and occasionally partake in shop-talk. In fact, my favorite way to keep up with what’s going on is via Twitter, and in the process I inevitably learn about some of the “players” in the industry. Which leads me to wonder, what would I be like if I were a guy in SEO?

Warning: the following are sweeping generalizations, only mildly offensive, and likely inaccurate stereotypes based purely on my observations. Feel free to dispute or harass me in the comments below. I’ll take it like a man.

I would ride a bike.


I would wear a plaid shirt.

Dan Shure   James Daugherty   john doherty

paddy moogan   rob toledo   rob woods

ryan mclaughlin   rand fishkin   Emma Still


I would enjoy good beer/local IPAs.

adam melson twitter

rob woods twitter

john henry scherck twitter


I would wear cool glasses.

chris countey   jeremy rivera   kieran flanagan

kelvin newman   rand in glasses   Not so cool


I would have a cartoon Twitter avatar.

james agate twittergianluca fiorelli

michael kovisbarry schwartz


I would have fancy facial hair.

anthony pensabene  bill slawski  john doherty

mike wilton   ross hudgens   I mustache you not to laugh at me


I would talk [to other SEO dudes] about [fantasy] football.


However, none of these things would matter if I could be the best looking man in SEO…let alone THE WORLD.

In case you couldn’t tell, there’s a certain coolness that SEOs possess, whether male or female. I dare any other industry to compete with our smarts, style, uniqueness, and overall awesome.

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73 Responses to If I Were an SEO Dude

  1. Anthony Pensabene says:

    hat tip to you, good woman. this is quite impressive and hilarious, especially the tags on the pics (nice touch- every little bit..) . The plaid-shirt breakdown is genius…

  2. You might also wear a Bow Tie. Bow Ties are cool.

  3. James D says:

    Bahahaha! So good, well done Emma.

  4. Caleb Donegan says:

    Horribly inaccurate representation of an SEO dude. Sure, I am currently wearing plaid,love microbrews, brag and bitch about fantasy football constantly, sport a 5 o’clock shadow and happen to ride a bike as well as require bifocals…but I do NOT have a cartoon Twitter avatar!

  5. Sean says:

    This is awesome, the trends of the SEO community are pretty interesting. Dig the attention to detail you had in this, especially the facial hair one!

    Good on you 😀

  6. All the glasses look the same (or nearly so) I think mine are way cooler. Then again, got no photographs in them to prove it…

    Cool post, love the img titles!

  7. But my glasses are even cooler now! Fun post :)

  8. Joel says:

    HA! Here’s to something DIFFERENT and entertaining. This was a fun read to brighten up my Thursday. Emma, you’re the (wo)man!

  9. Emma says:

    I’ll say this much – at my office I am generally considered “one of the guys” – on my first day, I was the only girl in the entire office (not just SEO). It’s a bit of a strange experience.

    However, I do have a cartoon avatar – but none of that other stuff! There are certainly bike riders and football talk in our office!

  10. Jim Seward says:

    You would also have a selection of tattoos…

    Tattoos are quite prevalent in the SEO community



  11. DennisG says:

    You could have dressed up like a man for Halloween, and brag about your SEO skills..
    Loved this post, and great way to get attention from the people mentioned…

  12. The next question is… Which SEO dude is going to be brave enough to write about “if I were a SEO chick”?

  13. Chris says:

    Thanks for breaking up my day with a little humor. Good work! I now need to get a cartoon twitter avatar!

  14. Tim says:

    This leaves me wondering where i fit in……… OMG, I’m an SEO outcast.

    No Plaid shirt
    No Cool Glasses
    Beer, sure on a weekend but prefer a Lager
    Fantasy football…. hrpmf, Rugby as a man’s game
    No Avatar, I’m building author rank

    I’ve got it !… I’m growing a Moustache for Movember

    Phew, I really am an SEO

  15. Maggie says:

    This. Is. Awesome.

    I also actually do many of the things on this list, heheh. Learn by community!

  16. Thumbs UP for: your effort in content curation, amuzement, and your pic – you are cute.

    Thumbs DOWN for: practical advice on SEO

  17. John says:

    Just you wait until a lot of SEO dudes have mustaches at the end of the month. Talk about fancy facial hair!

  18. Emma Hahaha very funny & cute! I like the added “I mustache you not to laugh at me” reminded me of when I added a goatee to one of my pictures… It was one of my silly days, trying to keep up with the boys in the industry! Thanks for the humor and laughs!

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  20. Jayna says:

    Emma, this is a fantastic post and I cracked up while reading it. Nice job! I work at a digital agency and most of my SEO counterparts are males so it’s always fun seeing what happens when you throw a girl into the mix. Us women bring a certain level of femininity, creativity, and insight that guys simply can’t understand. Like the difference for optimizing for a shrug and a bolero and how that differs from a cardigan. Thanks again for sharing!

  21. Dan Kern says:

    Great article, Emma! Good link bait too :) Along with plaid shirts and beer, how about girls in yoga pants? Who’s with me!?

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  23. Mark Asciak says:

    lols, nice one, although I wouldn’t be caught dead in a plaid shirt!

  24. james says:

    Some good examples of SEO dudes, funny thing is our team currently has many girls in it, so its a good mix of ideas for all projects, and lets face it girls get better results from outreach as man webmasters are dudes…

  25. Ha! I absolutely love this post, Emma! The similarities are very entertaining. I think you may need to add, “I would be a Star Wars fanatic!” But that’s not necessarily gender specific. It certainly doesn’t hold me back! I will be refraining from the mustache and plaid shirt though. =)

  26. Casie G says:

    This is really hilarious and awesome. I wonder what a Ladies of Search would like look? 😛

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  28. Nice breakdown of the whole industry there :) big glasses and plaid shirts are a match made in heaven.

  29. Thumbs up for originality!

  30. Jey says:

    Very funny. I almost drank coffee up my nose while reading this. The plaid shirts were particularly amusing (I didn’t get it until that point).

    Good to see more females in the game.

  31. Tom Andrews says:

    Excellent light hearted stuff :)

  32. Cool post! But our boss would surely add: turn up a bunch of Marshall amplifiers and play a solo like a pro 😀

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  34. virginia says:

    Hey Emma! I hear you….lets move over to the dark side! LOL xx

  35. Iain says:

    I’ve read this about 5 times over the last couple of days and it still makes me smile every time. Love it, good work.

  36. Kate Morris says:

    This made my Friday!

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  38. Tis the season to support Movember.
    It was pretty funny to see a pic of you with faux mustache. :)

    Have you noticed any common trends among female SEO
    practioners? :)

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  40. It’s funny, I was just talking about this with a coworker the other day. I’ve been doing all of these things long before I even knew what SEO was. Although I have to admit, I don’t care for football. Does that make me an outsider?

  41. SarahG says:

    Hilarious! As I sit next to my plaid-shirt-wearing counterpart right now…he sold his fixie though in exchange for a road bike..still count? haha Way to go Emma! A friend from outside the industry sent me your link thinking of me. Great work!

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  43. Felix says:

    Haha, the list is cool. I’m glad i’m a dude i can do all that, except the moustache :)

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  47. Lauren says:

    Hilarious! Creative and very true, great read Emma!

  48. kate says:

    Oh god I’m so glad you did this. Sorry I found it so late though! Truly great, right down to your replies. Mustache off to you, fellow seo ladydude.

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  52. Tyler Perez says:

    Haha, this cracks me up.. Maybe a bit old, but still accurate… I love my bike & local brews…

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