In 2014, I felt overworked from my day job and wanted a career I felt passionate about.
Lucky for me, at just the right time I came across a job posting from an old coworker- SEO and Digital Marketer. Honestly I had no idea what SEO even meant but I figured it couldn’t be that hard right? [eyeroll]
So I hit apply and got contacted to do a phone interview which I completely bombed!
I was given a homework assignment to research SEO, learn more about the industry and wrap it all up into one 500 word article.
I was so overwhelmed looking up information about SEO. My brain was fried from research. But five hours later I had a blog post that was decent enough to get me hired.
My First Day [and Year] as a Search Engine Optimizer
I had just 2 days – literally two days guys – until the current SEO would leave the company. We talked about clients, toured WordPress and Google analytics (attempted to rather). Everything seemed so difficult to understand.
I had no technical experience in any of these platforms. They were completely foreign to me and at times, I felt totally out of my league because they were not easy tools to use for someone with no technical skills.
But it’s such a thrill to learn a new skill isn’t it? I was passionate about learning how SEO worked.
SEO can be tough to grasp. It took me one year to learn SEO. And it was a tough year.
I had to google just about everything I was doing. And Moz (resource info below), was my total lifeline during this year. It didn’t fail, if there was something I needed to know about SEO, they would give me the tools to teach myself.
Luckily our team was lean and mean – as my boss likes to say – with just myself, my boss and the programmer.
I had the freedom to do things as I wanted. To try and fail. To try and fail again.
Since our client base was small local businesses, there wasn’t thousands of dollars on the line. It helped me to grow and test things out on my own.
But I needed to get faster. I needed a checklist to help me know where to start with SEO for each new page I created.
Fast forward through a year of many bad online tactics that didn’t help to get more online visibility; I did it. I was finally an SEO!
I’m sure that a year doesn’t sound appealing, and I’m sure it could be done much faster, but I suddenly got into a groove. I had a new found confidence.
Finally Developing A Process [And Some Major Wins]
My second year was much better in comparison. I had a standardized process for our SEO campaigns that freed up more of my time. I was able to get my clients links from amazing sites like USA Today, MSN, and Destination Wedding magazine.
I was feeling great!
By this time, I’ve become the jack of all trades- social media planner, blog writer, SEO, marketing strategist, ppc manager, conversion rate optimizer, account manager, bank link creator – you name it, I’ve done it.
It just clicked one day. I knew what tools to use and which strategies to implement without blowing the budget, or exhausting all my resources. Suddenly I wasn’t looking at it from eye-level, but instead I was looking down overseeing the whole picture from start to finish.
Don’t Let the Confusion of SEO Keep You Overwhelmed
It can be an uphill battle, trying every strategy and ultimately being good at none of them. That will change. One day it will all make sense and you will develop a strategy that works for your business. With the help of a handful of great resources along the way to keep you on the right track.
Do you feel your website’s SEO is kind of scattered right now and needs some attention to get it more visible? Maybe you know some SEO but sometimes it’s overwhelming to know what to do first! You’re not alone.
I’d love to be your resource when you get stuck. It helped me so much along the way, to reach out in forums and ask questions, that I want to help others too!
What challenges are you facing in SEO? Leave me a comment below.
A Few of My Favorite SEO Resources
Backlinko by Brian Dean – What I love about Backlinko is that they are extremely actionable steps that he’s clearly laid out for you.
Whiteboard Friday by Rand Fishkin at Moz – Everyone loves a little whiteboard session right? Rand dissects just about every hurdle you might face in SEO.
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