How to Determine Your Personal SEO Score

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No matter your position or age, you are a CEO: The CEO of your own brand. Businesses spend billions of dollars and hours building and maintaining their brands. Establishing your online presence and brand gives you the opportunity to tell your own story, instead of someone else telling it for you. What are you doing to improve yours?

You may be wondering, why does it even matter?

Say I meet someone and I want to learn more about them, what do I do? I Google them. Those results give me insight into who they are. 

I Googled a potential employee and came across her LinkedIn profile. There was a grammatical error on it. I nearly didn’t hire her. This is why your online brand matters. So is your brand making the grade? Start by determining your Personal SEO Score.    

A Personal SEO Score is your personal search engine optimization or the results of your name in an online search, like Google. 

Go ahead, Google your name! 

If you have a common name, you may need to add keywords that people might search with your name like your location, the name of the business you work for or the industry you work in. 

Pro Tip: Put your name in quotes to only see results where your first and last name appear together. 

Now let’s determine your score! When done make sure to check out these 8 steps that can improve your online brand and push your score even higher! 

  • Give yourself 10 points for each result that you already knew about or were a part of.
  • Give yourself 15 points if any of your social media channels appear. Give yourself a bonus 10 points if those social media results appear in a carousel like this ⬇️

Kristi Piehl Twitter

  • Give yourself 10 points if all of the images that appear are actually of you!
  • Give yourself 10 points if all of the results on the first page are from the past year. 
  • Subtract 10 points for every result you wish you could delete.

Did you pass?

0 - 20 points | D | Your Personal SEO needs some work! Your online reputation is out of your control. This exercise likely made it clear that you aren’t spending time on your brand or reputation, and now you can see the impact! If you are thinking it doesn’t matter, challenge that thought. Someday you will want to hire someone or be hired by somebody. You deserve search results you can be proud of.   

21 - 40 points | C | Your Personal SEO has room to improve. Some quick fixes will improve your grade: post on social media more frequently, beef up your bio on your company website and/or social media platforms, consider offering your expertise for news articles. Trusted news organizations perform well in searches so it is extremely valuable to have your name appear on these sites.

41 - 75 points | B | Good job! You are likely paying attention to your online brand (or have someone who is doing it for you). You can still make improvements. Think about how active you are on social media. Are you devoting time to thought leadership? The most important thing is to maintain your personal brand focus. You don’t want to lose momentum.    

76 points or higher | A | Congrats! You are a personal brand expert. (Have you thought about blogging about it?) You own your story and are in control of what people learn about you online. Unfortunately, SEO gives and it takes. Stay active in earned and owned media. Keep searching your name to ensure you still like the results. (But don’t click on the links of those you don’t! That will only add to that ranking.)


8 tips to improve your personal SEO scoreA successful personal brand builds trust, relationships, transparency, confidence and authenticity. If you’ve realized that your personal brand could use some attention, click here to get more expert tips that can help to improve your score.