Search engine optimization (SEO) has been low on my own priority list throughout the 15 years I’ve been marketing my own services. Yes, I freely admit I’ve been mostly ignoring it while doing just the basics.
This may seem like a blatant disregard for something that’s portrayed more and more frequently as essential. It’s actually been a strategic decision for my business… not an oversight. Why?
SEO is complicated, time-consuming and expensive. It’s a skill I’ve never desired to acquire. It’s technical and behind-the-scenes, whereas I like doing work that can be seen (and yes, sometimes admired). Hiring help for SEO would be a big expense.
The goal of SEO is generally to attract strangers. Over the years, I’ve wasted time with a few ‘tire kickers’. Those are people who have stumbled across my website, know nothing about my experience or the quality of my work, and have focused on price comparisons. I have never competed on price – my pricing is reasonable but certainly not rock bottom. (Instead, I’ve grown my business through referrals.)
SEO is only useful if your potential clients are using Google to search for your products and services. A recent chat with voiceover actor Natasha Marchewka provided a great example. There are over 400,000 voiceover actors in the world. Producers do not search for voiceover talent on Google – that would be a horrendous job. In that industry, it’s more important to be listed on sites like voices.com.
Just to be clear, I’m not saying that SEO is bad. It’s very, very good for many businesses. But maybe it isn’t as essential for your business as others would have you believe. Make your own decision based on your budget, your business model and your industry.