Gaining Confidence

During the first year I worked at Setpoint Systems we overhauled our website and part of the services the company offered was Search Engine Optimization (SEO) as a part of the overhaul.  Within a few months of the new website being up the VP of Marketing found a new job and decided to leave the company.  As his assistant it fell upon me to take responsibility for our website.  The only thing I knew was some basic HTML that I had learned at Setpoint to maintain the existing website.

As I started working with the company who was providing our SEO services I realized I had no clue about what they were even talking about.  As I talked to my boss about it, we decided that I needed to learn about what search engine optimization even was because I needed to understand what the company we hired was doing.  As I began to read articles, blog posts, and follow forums on the Internet I began to get a basic understanding of what SEO was all about and how to do it.

Everyday I pushed myself to learn more so that I could figure out things like why we weren’t ranking on Google searches, or why people didn’t stay on our website.  The day came about 9 months after I started learning about SEO that I realized I knew more about SEO than the company I was paying.  My boss already knew it but I didn’t see it yet.  When I learn a new skill it’s hard for me to say that I know more than my teacher.  I was in no way ready to do SEO on my own but I was ready for a new company who knew more and could help me to continue to learn.

Thus began my task of searching out different SEO companies, interviewing them, and selecting the one that I felt would not just help our website but would teach me along the way.  This second company lasted for a year and a half and I learned so much more and started to gain confidence in my abilities because they would let me do as much as I was capable of.  If I came up with the idea they encouraged me to follow through on it.  I started to realize that I did understand what I was doing.

Once again I was tasked with finding another SEO company that could continue to teach me.  The problem now was that I felt that I knew what I was doing so if they couldn’t match up with me then they were scratched off my list.  I was astounded that people were still selling services that were considered outdated when I started learning about SEO over three years ago.  After researching these other companies I realized that I did know as much as they did and I was just as good.

For the past nine months now I have been doing the SEO for our company on my own.  I consistently rank for the keywords that I am most interested in.  I am still working on maintaining and adding new keywords because I don’t want to have a static website.  I have been fine tuning our site and weeding out items from our site to streamline what our offerings are because even though we have done torque and swaging stations I found that people who were searching for them were not looking for the type of industrial machinery Setpoint provides.  Through doing this I have found the bounce rate decreasing which helps me to see that Setpoint’s website is more relevant.

Gaining confidence for me came through doing.  It was easy to read about and start to understand what SEO was all about but it wasn’t until I started doing or applying what I was learning that I started to believe that I really could do this.  I think this is true for many things, once you learn about a topic the point at which you know you can do it is when you start doing it day in and day out.  It wasn’t until after I couldn’t find another company to replace the last company I had hired that I realized that I could do this on my own.  I may purchase a service such as keyword research from one company or another along the way to give me a fresh perspective but as a whole as long as I continue to have time to devote to our website I know that I am good at what I do and will be able to continue to help the Setpoint website to show up when people search for lean automation equipment or industrial automation services.  I also have to remember to never stop learning, the ideas of search engine optimization are continually changing and I need to stay current so that I do not become one of those people who are doing things that are no longer useful.