If you do some research on search engine optimization, you will probably find two schools of thought. The first is people that say you can do the SEO yourself. It may be a web site that teaches you how to do SEO, someone selling a Do-It-Yourself SEO kit, or a company that does something more elaborate such as inviting you to a free seminar and selling you a customizable e-commerce site with SEO tools. The second school of thought is people that suggest you should hire someone to do the SEO for you. These may be companies that are selling their SEO or SEM (Search Engine Marketing) services.
As a business owner, should you do the SEO yourself or hire an expert to do it? There is no single right answer, but we will provide some questions to help you analyze this from a business perspective so you can arrive at the answer that is right for you.
Do you have the expertise? There is a big difference between knowing how to build a web site and knowing how to get to the top of Google. We had a client who hired a web designer to build their web site, and hired us to do the SEO work. Their ranking on search engines kept improving consistently until one day when their web designer did some updates to their web site without first consulting us. Immediately, their ranking dropped 40 spots and it was difficult to “undo” those changes and earn their ranking back. Especially on highly competitive keywords (the ones that bring in a lot of business), there are lots of companies and SEO experts fighting to be at the top of Google. Do you have the expertise to beat the other SEO experts and get your web site to the top?
Do you have the time? Let’s assume you have the expertise. Doing SEO is a time-consuming process. What is your time worth? Can your time be better spent on other activities such as working with clients and brining in more income? Think about how much time you have, and whether spending your time doing SEO work is the best use of your time.
Do you have the money? This is probably one of the biggest reasons people choose to do the SEO themselves, because they think it saves them money. This line of reasoning seems to make sense, but let’s examine it carefully. First, doing bad SEO can actually hurt your site, so not doing anything is preferable to doing it wrong. If you want to do the SEO yourself, you better make sure you know what you are doing. Second, the need to “save money” probably stems from not having enough income in the first place. If you don’t have enough income, should you spend your time working on SEO, or can you bring in more income by doing other activities? Finally, what is the cost of not hiring someone to do the SEO? Will it take time away from your family? Will it diminish your effectiveness at your primary job? Is SEO something you want to do along with your primary job everyday?
Being at the top in search engine results can bring in a lot of business for you, and the decision to either do it yourself or hire an expert is an important one to make. We hope the questions we have provided will help you arrive at an answer that best suits your needs.
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