How To Make It As An SEO Professional

Hopefully by now I have convinced you that learning SEO is a very valuable skill that companies and people in general are willing to pay a lot of money for. Most companies really don’t know what SEO is or how to go about doing it, so they either have to hire an SEO professional or outsource the process. If you can prove that you know what you are doing, companies really are willing to spend big for your services. The value that SEOs can bring to a company is very big, sometimes EXTREMELY big. If you can prove that you can do a great job, why wouldn’t they pay you lots of money?

So I’ve convinced you that it is a great skill to learn and you can really make a great career out of it, but how can you really make it as an SEO professional? Well, there are several different paths that you can take in order to pay make a great living with SEO. I’ll go through those different paths here.

Get Clients

The easiest way to make money quickly with SEO is to get clients. They will pay you up front and it’s just a good situation overall. In many cases, if you are bringing a lot of potential value to their business, you can negotiate getting paid a pretty sizable fee each month. How should you go about getting clients? Well, there are any number of ways to do so, and you don’t need to be a part of a big SEO company to do so. I’ll run through a few of the best ideas here.

Facebook Ads– You can target different professions very well on Facebook. I would run ads catered to different professions and provide something for free, like a free ebook related to running their business or offer a free first page Google ranking. You need to offer something for free in order to really get traction with Facebook. From there, you can switch and upsell monthly SEO services.

Rank For City SEO– Whatever city you live in, there will be companies that go onto Google and search “city name + SEO.” If you are the #1 result that shows up when they make that search, they will really want to work with you. By ranking #1 for that search, you have already proven that you know exactly what you are doing. If you can do this, I can guarantee that you will get a steady flow of leads coming through and you will be on your way to running a successful SEO company with a big list of clients.

Networking– You should always be networking because any conversation that you have with anyone can always lead to a new client. If you have a plumber come to your house, talk to him about his online presence and how he gets leads. There are lots of business referral groups like BNI whose sole purpose is to refer business to its members. It’s a really great place to try to get clients.

Affiliate Sites

Affiliate sites are where you make a site, rank it for certain terms, and then refer traffic to an offer (learn more here). You then get a commission when someone makes a sale or takes some sort of action. This takes more time to really get to making money, but it’s a great way to get pretty passive income. Once you get your rankings, there’s not a whole lot more that you have to do. From that point, you can just start another affiliate site. People make great livings with affiliate SEO, and there’s no reason why this won’t continue to be the case going forward.

seo as a good career

Lead Generation

This kind of combines client SEO and affiliate SEO. The concept is that you create a website with the intention of getting leads for another business. You could have a site that ranks well for local plumbing terms. From there, you can forward a phone number to a local plumber and get paid for each lead that you send his way. This is a great way of getting money because usually the ranking process is much easier than it is for more competitive affiliate niches. This is a great way to start off your SEO business.

As I’ve shown, there are lots of ways to make an amazing living with SEO. If I were just getting started, I would create my own city SEO site and start doing some networking to get clients. From there, you can get more into affiliate SEO or lead generation. I like trying to get clients first because they pay you upfront. It’s the fastest way to get going with an SEO career. Hopefully this has been a convincing argument that SEO can be a potentially lucrative career, and in my opinion it’s just a really coo skill to have.

 

Learn How To Best Monitor Your Home and Business with A Security System

In 2015 we have seen the rise of many simple DIY security systems that can be used to monitor your business or home.  These systems are unique because the equipment is relatively inexpensive and works very well with your computer or iPhone app.

canary home security alarmTake Canary as an example.  For a relatively low price you are able to get an HD camera that you can put in your home or office and easily monitor from your iPhone.  Not only that, you can invite trusted friends and family to monitor from their phone as well so you can have people really keeping an eye on your security.

Another example would be Scout, which was just featured in Techcrunch recently.  This is truly a DIY home security dream.  The alarm integrates with a number of other systems such that you can actually design your own home security system to some extent.  Use this technology to really drive your understanding of what it means to be safe on a budget.

The true advantage of these systems is that it makes security accessible, both in terms of price and convenience.  With an older version of an online security system you are going to see a number of issues around setting it up, or pay an installation fee.  If something breaks, call a technician, and pay another fee.  Not to mention you’ll be paying a significant amount for monthly monitoring from a 3rd party group, which sometimes works, but often doesn’t.

Now we’re certainly all for investing in your own security – but why pay a ton for it if you don’t have to?  The new systems provide a much better opportunity for the average family to feel very secure for a fraction of the price.  Not to mention they are pretty cool with their integrations.

If you want to learn the latest about these new home security companies, we suggest taking a look at the Security Baron tumblr or their Facebook page for the latest Security system reviews and news.

Home security should be important for your family, now technology can make that goal achievable for your family.  Leave a message for us in the comments if you have any questions about security system options.

We will leave you with this video for some quick home security options you can do even without an electronic system:

 

6 Good Reasons to Get an EMBA

Determining to go back to school is a weighted decision. Time, money and value are all common concerns and play a role in coming to a confident resolution. Working professionals particularly face a difficult decision as many are forced to leave their current positions in the pursuit of an advanced level degree. For these individuals, an Executive Master’s of Business Administration (EMBA) is an appealing program since it’s specifically created to accommodate the needs and schedule of current executives. If you’re considering attending grad school as a working professional, read on to learn a few reasons why an EMBA (versus an MBA) might be the best program for you.

EMBA vs MBA

  1. You can’t afford to pursue an MBA fulltime.

The cost of pursing an MBA alone is reason enough to deter many potential applicants. When you consider that many MBA programs also require you to leave your job, the financial burden grows even more. Since EMBA students can keep working fulltime they are able to continue receiving a paycheck and are often eligible for assistance from their employer. 32% of companies will fully cover the cost of their employees EMBA, while others may offer partial reimbursement.

  1. You don’t want to leave your job.

Whether for financial reasons or simply because you like where you work, many prospective students disregard the idea of grad school because they don’t want to leave their job. With an EMBA that’s not an issue. Classes are held weekends and evenings to allow students to continue working while pursuing their degree. Completing the program may take a little longer (2-3 years versus 1-2) but the ability to continue working outweighs the extended duration of EMBA programs.

  1. You want a higher salary.

Making more money is always a popular reason for seeking an advanced level degree, and an EMBA program can certainly help you achieve that salary increase. On average, EMBA graduates earn $164,845 after completing their degree. How much you make will be dependent on your current salary and experience, but earning your EMBA will undoubtedly qualify you for a salary bump.

  1. It’s time for a promotion.

Earning an EMBA sends a clear message to your employer that you’re serious about your career. It will qualify you to take on more responsibilities and teach you the ins and outs of being an effective leader. If you’re ready to move up the corporate ladder, an advanced level degree can be the bargaining chip you need to state your case when asking for a promotion.

  1. You think people your age don’t go to grad school.

“I’m too old to go back to school,” is not a valid excuse. In fact, the average age of an EMBA student is between 32 and 38 years old. EMBA programs are made up of experienced individuals who have already spent five or more years in some type of supervisor role. Entering this type of Master’s of Business Administration program will give you access to a network of executive level professionals with similar experience and career goals.

  1. You want to shift from business exec to entrepreneur.

EMBA students are not just hoping to make it in the corporate world — many attend with sights on starting their own business. If becoming your own boss is the end goal, an EMBA will help you get there by teaching you the fundamentals of business management and equip you with the skills to build an organized and profitable company. Whether you want to keep your current job while attending school or are starting your new business while simultaneously earning your degree, an EMBA will cater to your busy schedule as you transition into entrepreneurship.

 

How To Learn How To Code

I’m personally not the best coder.  I have learned a few languages, but I am certainly no expert in them.  I can do some basic stuff with front-end web design, and I generally understand how programming languages work, but that certainly doesn’t mean I’m a master at any of the programming languages.  Sometimes just understanding them can be very valuable to an organization.  If you can speak a programmer’s language, then you can be a talented project manager and you can oversee building really cool and neat projects.  But how should you learn to code?  Well, I have a lot of theories about this exact subject, but I’ll let someone else who knows better tell you.  Check out the video below to learn more on this exact subject.

 

 

Combining Online Learning With A Classroom Setting

There’s no question that the recession really hit the US very hard.  Budgets for local governments were hit especially hard, and a lot of times that meant that the schools would have less money.  With so many budget constraints, a lot of school districts really started looking into how to incorporate online learning with traditional learning from a teacher in a classroom.  If they could figure out a way to do so, they’d be able to run a much leaner and possibly more effective school system.  Well, the video below goes more into depth on this subject.  I think it’s fascinating.

Let me know what you think about this.  I think this is the way forward for America’s schools.  Teachers unions may not like it, but I think it’s the inevitable way forward.

 

Advantages Of Learning Online

At Succor, we are very biased with our opinion on online learning.  From my personal journey, I have learned so many things from resources online.  When I was trying to learn Spanish, I almost exclusively used resources online to help me.  When I learned to code, everything that I learned was from online resources.  I didn’t have the time or money to actually go take a class.  With that being said, I think there are some major advantages to learning online versus in a classroom setting.  This Wall Street Journal video goes through 6 major advantages to online learning.  Check it out, as I think it’s pretty informative.

The biggest advantage to me is the ability to learn at your own pace.  There are times in a classroom environment where I want to go really fast, and there are other times where I want to learn at a much slower pace.  Learning online allows me to set the pace at which I learn.  I think that’s the biggest advantage, but I definitely agree with what’s in this video.  What do you guys think?

 

Make Your Life And Business Easier With Online Faxes

As I mentioned in a previous post, once you have developed some skills and started a business of your own, you’ll want to first get a steady stream of revenue coming in.  You’ll have to find what methods produce a steady flow of leads.  Doing so is not easy, and many people who start businesses can never master this aspect of business and never achieve success.  Take a photo studio, for example.  With all its fixed costs, the studio needs to be able to rent out its space on a consistent basis.  If it can’t get a steady stream of people in to rent the space, it won’t be able to cover its fixed costs and it will shut down at a certain point.

automate work

Phase two for any business is figuring out how to scale.  The best way to scale is to make the best use of your time and figure out how to automate work and/or hand off as much tedious and “non-value added” work to someone else as possible (this article talks about the benefits of outsourcing for small businesses).  What comes to mind to me is things like billing clients, scheduling appointments, and things of that nature.  Having to print and fax things is another area that would fall under this realm.

Taking the time to actually send a fax can be quite an endeavor, and if you find yourself having to do so a lot, you are wasting precious time that you could be spending trying to grow your business.  Even if you have an assistant doing your faxing for you, that’s not the best use of that person’s time.  Plus, if you can cut out all the paper, you are definitely on your way to being a much more eco-friendly business.

So if you’ve decided that I’m right, and you shouldn’t waste your time doing standard paper faxes, what should you do?  Well, there is a very big online fax market that has sprung up that serves this exact need.  You can sign and fax over very important documents over the web without ever having to use a piece of paper.  What about your signature for important things like contracts?  Well, digital screens and eSignature alleviates that concern, and you can draw your own signature and transmit it on your documents over the web.  eFax is the big company in the space that everyone knows about, but there are a lot of different options to choose from depending on your needs and budget (see more on eFax).

What are the main things you should know about online fax services?  Well, you should divide this up into the two main tasks you would want to do: sending faxes and receiving faxes.  If you sign up for an online fax service, you’ll get a phone number.  If someone sends a fax to that number, it will forward to your email and account dashboard, most likely as a PDF document.  You won’t ever have to touch a piece of paper in that scenario.  In a similar fashion, you can send a “fax” via a PDF file to whatever fax number you want.  If a real estate agent, for example, told you to sign a contract and then fax it over to him, you could simply take the contract online, add your digital signature, and then use an online fax service to send the subsequent PDF file to an actual fax machine.  Again, you wouldn’t need to touch a piece of paper in that scenario either.

Going with an online fax service is just good business sense because it’s very cheap and it saves you a lot of time.  You need to find as many ways to decrease the amount of time you spend doing non-value added activities.  This is certainly one way to do so, and I would highly recommend that you do it if you find yourself sending faxes with any frequency.

 

To Succeed On Your Own, Automate/Outsource What You Can

Let’s say you have decided to go off on your own and be an entrepreneur.  This might mean that you are a web designer or maybe you have started a small but effective digital marketing agency.  If that is the case, you should start first by trying to get a steady stream of clients.  Getting clients or customers is always the first goal that you should try to reach.  You need to get to a certain revenue threshold before you can start thinking about phase II.  Phase II really involves figuring out how to make your business work better for you and then how to scale it.  It could simply mean figuring out a great way to get a steady flow of new customers.

However, if you are in a services business, the biggest enemy of getting to the next step is how you spend your time.  If you spend your time billing your clients, filling out forms, going to the bank to cash checks, etc, you are doing a disservice to your business, and you are putting yourself in a position where it will be very hard to scale.  If your skills are valuable, you shouldn’t be spending any time doing things that you can either automate or outsource.  You need to spend time working “on” your business, rather than “in” your business.

The best way to scale your business is to automate or outsource all of the activities that you can.  This means that you never have to worry about invoicing a client.  You never spend time doing anything but working on your business.  This is the best way to expand.  How do you do this?  Well, you need to analyze everything you do in a given week.  From there, you need to figure out which of the tasks that you get done you can outsource or automate.  There are companies out there, like Zirtual, that provide US-based virtual assistants.  They can take care of billing and managing your emails for you.  They can do things like scheduling too.  I haven’t used them personally, but they are just one example of a way to outsource something that you don’t want to do.

You can also work with freelancers very easily and for not that much money.  If you ever need any writing done, for example, there are lots of freelance writers that are very good that you can work with.  Upwork is a good source to find good writers.

At a certain point, you may just want to hire someone.  Your time is valuable.  If you can train someone to do a lot of the work that you are doing, then you can have even more time set aside to work on trying to expand your business.  When should you consider hiring someone?  Well, this INC article has a few ideas.  Mainly, if you are turning down work, or you are finding that you are not doing as good of a job as you could be doing with your current clients/customers, then that is a good sign that it might be time to hire someone.  Hiring someone is a big responsibility, and it is something you should not take lightly.

The overall approach is here is to help you expand your business by focusing your time on things that will add value to the business.  Everything else should be automated or outsourced.  If you can figure this out, then you can greatly expand your business and expand the wealth for you and your family.  And there’s nothing wrong with that.

 

Why You Should Learn SEO And How To Do It

As I said in my initial welcome post back in the day (read here if you feel so inclined), I want to help people increase their value to society, to employers, and to themselves.  I want to also help people improve their financial situation by providing a roadmap of how to make more money by learning new things that others are willing to pay you for.

That’s where SEO comes into play.  SEO is short for search engine optimization.  Here’s why it is so valuable.  Say you sold bikes online and there’s a million people going onto Google each month searching to buy a bike online, wouldn’t it be really great if your website was the first result in Google’s search results?  If you were able to show up first, you would get hundreds of thousands of targeted visitors to your site for free.  Hopefully that example illustrates how important SEO can be for most businesses.  SEO doesn’t work or doesn’t apply to a lot of businesses, but any business that could benefit from showing up highly when people make searches on Google relevant to their business will find SEO valuable.

So what is SEO then?  SEO is doing a process that makes sure your website shows up as high as possible for the search terms that are relevant to your website.  There are a number of things you can do to make sure you show up more highly in Google and thus get more traffic.  The entire process is referred to as SEO.  This is extremely valuable to a lot of companies and websites and a lot of them are willing to pay a lot of money for people who know how to do this.  That’s where you come in.

If you understand SEO well, you can make a lot money.  You can do SEO for companies, or you can make your own websites and use SEO to get lots of traffic and make money that way.  It’s a really awesome way to make money.  Even better, if you know what you are doing, you don’t even really have to spend that much time doing it.  You just have to be smart with how you go about it.

So, how can you learn?  Well, first you need to know the basics.  For that, I would turn to SEOMoz.  After that, you should create your own website around a certain topic area and then start doing SEO on it.  From there, you will learn what to do and what not to do.  Be active on forums and learn from other people who have come before you.  Trial and error is a big part of learning about SEO.  Get out there and start doing it, and then eventually you can land a client or two and start making some good money doing it.

 

Review: Codecademy

Codecademy is used by people all over the world.  It has helped bring people from no knowledge of coding at all to a pretty solid understanding of it.  All of this is free as well.  If you are thinking about learning to code, whether you want to make iPhone apps or just be a web designer, Codecademy is a great place to start.

In my opinion, this site is the perfect starting place for whatever you are trying to do.  I’ve used it for html, css, javascript, and php.  In all four cases, I felt like it was great introductory material.  The lessons aren’t videos, but they are rather interactive lessons where they explain a concept and then give you small coding challenges to make sure you actually understand what was just presented to you.  This is a great way to learn in my opinion.  If you can stay focused, it doesn’t feel tedious or boring at all when you are going through the lessons.  For that reason, I think the lessons are ideal for people who are just starting out.  They do a really good job of explaining things as is you have no previous knowledge whatsoever.

The lessons are phenomenal and they aren’t boring at all.  So is there any downside to Codecademy?  There’s no real downside to it, there’s just realities of what’s not available yet.  In my opinion, these lessons are perfect for beginners.  If you wan to get more advanced, they don’t have any material yet that would cater to you, so you are probably just going to have to look elsewhere.  For whatever you are trying to learn, I would highly recommend looking at this site first.  You will learn the basics very well, and then you can move onto another resource once you are done and when you want to move on to more advanced material.  I think that’s a pretty good overview of what this site has to offer.