Okay, I’ve been an SEO specialist for over 6 years, but at the speed things change on the web, and with the amount of study I’ve done in that period, it might as well have been 20 years, so I guess I have the right to talk about “the early days”
I remember around 2005, I had a friend build me a website for my radio jingles business (I had been around computers a long time, but I still didn’t know much about making a website). I had been a lifelong musician, and wanted to take a shot at the jingles game. I was already a songwriter and arranger, so it seemed like a worthwhile effort. I figured If I had a website online where I could get my bio and mp3 medley in front of potential clients, retailers and the like would be calling me day and night, lol.
He did a nice job on the website (a dreamweaver creation), and I was so pumped the day he uploaded it to his server (domain names, servers, FTP, et al, was just so much black magic to me then, so he handled everything.)
I’m sure it didn’t propagate for a couple of days, but I’ll never forget that moment I typed in “musictosellby.com” and there it was! ONLINE!! I had it made now.
I soon discovered If I typed in the exact URL in the address bar, it would, of course, be there, but when I typed in “Radio Jingles NH” in the browser bar as a general search, no such luck. My competitors were there, so where was my site? Hmmmmmm……
My friend said you have to “give it time” to get to the first page. okay, I’m a patient man. I waited a couple of weeks, and tried the search again. Zilcho.
2 more weeks, still nothing. I didn’t even understand about crawling and indexing (or care), I just wanted my website at the top of the first page! my friend came over, and started going deeper into the SERPs. There it was, finally, at the bottom of page 3. Page 3?. Yuk.
Anyway, a few more weeks passed with no improvement, and he then admitted “I think you might have to talk to an SEO”, to which I replied “what is an SEO?” He told me “An SEO is someone who specializes in search engine optimization, which is the study of getting websites to rank highly. I’m not really that familiar with it, but one of those guys could explain it to you.” Okay. It was the first time I had ever heard the term, and promised myself I’d look into it. And I did.
I found a few SEO agencies in the southern part of the state, and called one. The guy gave me a good overview of the process, all the while dropping terms like Metatags, Keyword Density, and Backlinking. I remember thinking to myself,”what is this guy talking about?” I asked him what he charged, and he said “$150.00 per hour” I almost dropped my teeth. I was a house painter at the time, climbing up tall ladders in the hot sun for $20.00 per hour. Is this even possible?
I thanked him for his time, and said I’d get back to him (not). It was then and there I decided to do my own SEO (really?)
I sought out articles on SEO (Youtube was still in it’s infancy) that were published at the time, and tried to follow them. I think I experienced a form of brain freeze after a couple of hours, totally overwhelmed with the plethora of terminology and strategies.
Long story short, I gave up on the idea of doing my own SEO, and since I couldn’t afford a professional SEO, I abandoned the whole kaboodle. Too bad, but 4 years later, with a lot more Internet Marketing under my belt, and Youtube videos everywhere, I took up the charge again with a vengeance. I learned it well, and 6 years later I’m still standing. While the learning is an ongoing process, I’m very good at what I do, and it is now how I pay my bills. Yowza.