SEO training vs SEO services

For some time now I have wondered about the merits of SEO services. Two or three disappointments this year, due to various factors: lack of resources, too little time, too high ambitions, too much competition, poor targeting, risky keyword choice, changing algos, etc… made me doubt. I also sometimes had to have customers send “me” instead of taking orders. So I asked myself and said to myself, what if instead of doing SEO services for the client, I shouldn’t turn to something else?

Natural reference services

I have been referencing sites for over 10 years. If it was quite simple before 2012, today the art of SEO has become more complex. Despite everything, I felt no particular problem after this fateful date and my clients’ sites did not experience any sudden outages. So I happily continued with my hacks and my certainties. This is about certainties, because in the end I don’t have as many as before. If certain tricks are always easy to use, others are impossible to pull off these days, which is why I use the word “complex”. Some themes have become almost impenetrable and I am careful not to use black hat techniques that I have not mastered and that others are much better at than I am. So you have to look for other sources. That is the reason for this article: should I keep selling SEO services ?

Let’s take an example: A client wants to rank on moderately competitive queries, approximately 6,000/7,000 monthly searches for approximately 350,000 results. The delivery doesn’t seem more complicated than that. I then start explaining to my client what needs to be done, give them recommendations and define “approximately” the time it takes to position their site. (with a margin of error, grandma should not be pushed ;D). So I offer him a quote, with an accompanying offer, a 12-month package, which my client signs. 3 months later, my client comes back angry because he says his site is not first on the first page. Mistake on my part, I didn’t have to explain to him that I couldn’t guarantee this position. His site was 7th at the time he started from 46th, I thought his reaction was a bit strong.

I wouldn’t have thought of it if 3 other customers hadn’t also complained about their site’s positioning. The features weren’t bad per se, but since the service was over and everyone had opted to continue on their own (even though I still keep an eye on my former clients), my focus inevitably shifted more to my active clients .

SEO training instead of SEO services

So that’s the question I’ve been thinking about for a while: I can’t “physically” be on top for all my clients, it would be a lie to say the opposite. I am independent and the amount of work required and the disproportionate aspirations of some become too important for one person. So it is not yet the time to stop intervening SEO services and suggest instead of SEO training more depth and recommendations? I know many do and it ends up seeming much more interesting and less of a headache to me. I’ve never been criticized for getting my hands dirty (thanks to the paperwork I’ve signed for each shift) but as things are going, things could get out of hand.

So I thought it wouldn’t be a bad idea to train my prospective clients on SEO issues. The benefits are many: they manage their project themselves, decide whether to follow my recommendations or not, but I cannot be held responsible. This is how they touch the reality of SEO and are confronted with making technical and strategic choices. So they may understand that sometimes their aspirations are out of proportion to the budgets they have and that asking to get to such or such a position is not as easy as they think. On the other hand, I think it’s an easy way out, for me of course, and I hate leaving my clients to fend for themselves in the wild.

I still think it’s the right solution. It is essential to educate the client and explain to him through practice that SEO is neither magic nor esoteric, that there is no secret to success, that budgets must match ambitions, that time is incompressible and that the competition has no waited for them.

And you what do you think?

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