Choose SEO as Your Career
1. High demand for SEO services
Once SEO was not a separate profession – Web masters performed some basic SEO for the sites they managed and that was all. But as sites began to grow and make money, it became more reasonable to hire a dedicated SEO specialist than to have the Web master do it. The demand for good SEO experts is high and is constantly on the rise.
2. A LOT of people have made a successful SEO career
There are many living proofs that SEO is a viable business. The list is too long to be quoted here but some of the names include Rob from Blackwood Productions, Jill Wahlen from High Rankings, Rand Fishkin from SEO Moz and many others.
3.Search Engine Optimizers make Good Money !
SEO is a profession that can be practiced while working for a company or as a solo practitioner. There are many jobboards like Dice and Craigslist that publish SEO job advertisements. It is worth noting that the compensation for SEO employees is equal to or even higher than that of developers, designers and marketers. Salaries over $80K per annum are not an exception for SEO jobs.
As a solo SEO practitioner you can make even more money. Almost all freelance sites have sections for SEO services and offers for $50 an hour or more are quite common. If you are still not confident that you can work on your own, you can start a SEO job, learn a bit and then start your own company.
If you already feel confident that you know a lot about SEO, you can take this quiz and see how you score. Well, don’t get depressed if you didn’t pass – here is a great checklist that will teach you a lot, even if you are already familiar with SEO.
4. Only Web-Designing MAY NOT be enough
Many companies offer turn-key solutions that include Web design, Web development AND SEO optimization. In fact, many clients expect that when they hire somebody to make their site, the site will be SEO friendly, so if you are good both as a designer and a SEO expert, you will be a truely valuable professional.
On the other hand, many other companies are dealing with SEO only because they feel that this way they can concentrate their efforts on their major strength – SEO, so you can consider this possibility as well.
5. Logical step ahead if you come from marketing or advertising
The Web has changed the way companies do business, so to some extent today’s marketers and advertisers need to have at least some SEO knowledge if they want to be successful. SEO is also a great career for linguists.
6. Lots of Learning
For somebody who comes from design, development or web administration, SEO might look not technical enough and you might feel that you will downgrade if you move to SEO. Don’t worry so much – you can learn a LOT from SEO, so if you are a talented techie, you are not downgrading but you are actually upgrading your skills packages.
7. SEO is already recognized as a career
Finally, if you need some more proof that SEO is a great career, have a look at the available courses and exams for SEO practitioners. Well, they might not be a CISCO certification but still they help to institutionalize the SEO profession.
Some Ugly Aspects of SEO
1. Dependent on search engines
It is true that in any career there are many things that are outside of your control but for SEO this is a rule number one. Search engines frequently change their algorithms and what is worse – these changes are not made public, so even the greatest SEO gurus admit that they make a lot of educated guesses about how things work. It is very discouraging to make everything perfect and then to learn that due to a change in the algorithm, your sites dropped 100 positions down. But the worst part is that you need to communicate this to clients, who are not satisfied with their sinking ratings.
2. No fixed rules
Probably this will change over time but for now the rule is that there are no rules – or at least not written ones. You can work very hard, follow everything that looks like a rule and still success is not coming. Currently you can’t even rely on bringing a search engine to court because of the damages they have done to your business because search engines are not obliged to rank high sites that have made efforts to get optimized.
3. Rapid changes in rankings
But even if you somehow manage to get to the top for a particular keyword, keeping the position requires constant efforts. Well, many other businesses are like that, so this is hardly a reason to complain – except when an angry customer starts shouting at you that this week their ratings are sinking and of course this is all your fault.
4. SEO requires Patience
The SEO professional and customers both need to understand that SEO takes constant effort and time. It could take months to move ahead in the ratings, or to build tens of links. Additionally, if you stop optimizing for some time, most likely you will experience a considerable drop in ratings. You need lots of motivation and patience not to give up when things are not going your way.
5. Black hat SEO
Black hat SEO is probably one of the biggest concerns for the would-be SEO practitioner. Fraud and unfair competition are present in any industry and those who are good and ethical suffer from this but black hat SEO is still pretty widespread. It is true that search engines penalize black hat practices but still black hat SEO is a major concern for the industry.
So, let’s hope that by telling you about the pros and cons of choosing SEO as your career we have helped you make an informed decision about your future.