How we got here
There is always a back story when it comes to how the business came to be. Rochester MN SEO is no different. For me, it started back in 2010 when I was first introduced into Search Engine Optimization. Before we get into that, it should be disclosed that I was involved in the sports industry and before that an athlete. Making the progression easier to follow it goes something like this: College student turned personal trainer turned hockey strength and conditioning coach turned sports training/sports camp operator turned high school hockey coach turned junior hockey scout into a junior hockey coach turned training specialist for an underground construction company turned owner and operator of a Search Engine Optimization firm.
Back to the beginnings of learning SEO. When I first began personal training. I was an independent contractor working out of a small Anytime Fitness 24/7 gym in Winona, MN. While I was developing my clientele and business at the time I was also getting into working with sport-specific organizations. Because of this, I needed to develop a website to help market myself and get the word out on what I was doing. This was the beginning of my crash course into the world of Search Engine Optimization. Every extra moment I had at the time was dedicated to learning everything I could about websites and how indexes worked. I will admit it was a daunting task and a never-ending uphill battle. However, at a certain point, things started to click on what all the new jargon I was learning meant and how it benefited my new training website. Language like: meta-data, headers, heading tags, paid per click, online presence, directory submissions, crawling, spiders, indexes, structured data, content, backlinks, blog posts, etc.
Above-all the number one thing that I learned and still hold true to this day. Actually, two things that were taken away from this experience are:
Google and all other major indexes do not care what a website looks like. In terms of graphics and design. It is the behind the scenes information - the information shown in every web pages source code is what matters.
What Google cares about is being relevant to the searcher or the end-user.
With this in mind - everything began to click and come together for me in terms of SEO. Using my very own (first) website as my guinea pig so to speak. I was able to test and explore the wonderful world of search. Over time I saw my site tanking higher and higher for specific keywords and ultimately gained expert knowledge, first-hand, on how to generate business using SEO as my weapon of choice.
As, I, continued to work within the sports industry. I stayed current on everything SEO, algorithm updates, best practices, white hat techniques, what's new, etc. As time went on, I inevitably met many people and worked with all sorts of different individuals. One of whom was about to start a new venture with a partner focusing on after-market installations for vehicles. Such as car audio, heated seats, LED's, remote starts and more. He knew that I had some experience in web development and even more experience with search engine optimization. Unbeknownst to me at the time. This would become my first real client in the SEO environment. They are known today as Amped Auto & Audio Accessories.
While I will get into the details of building out there SEO and Web strategies in another post. I will say that they are currently at a point where they are receiving so much business it is hard for them to keep up with it all! This is for sure a great vote of confidence for me and my efforts in terms of SEO! Again, I will be dedicating other posts specifically on my current portfolio and all the details that go along with them.
Coming back to how we got to this point - Throughout 2017 a lot was changing for me personally. With starting a family, getting married, etc. And, I began to realize that the life of being a hockey coach was not a family-friendly career. So naturally, I began looking for exits and other opportunities that I could get into. This by far has been the hardest decision/question I have yet to make. With the biggest question, "what will I do?" Not knowing what direction I would take I began polishing my resume and started applying to everything and anything.
In early 2018 I was given an opportunity to work for a construction company near my hometown. Specializing in horizontal directional drilling within the underground construction environment. They were looking for a training & development specialist. Essentially a coach that can work with all employees and help develop their employees' skills on a variety of items. Additionally, I was able to help with these companies SEO and web analytics - they had a seriously underdeveloped online presence for being as big as they were. With my knowledge and experience in this area. I was thinking this would be a great skill to bring to my new team. Although I was brought on for training and development I was clearly more passionate about SEO and web analytics. This helped me discover what I wanted to do next. Throughout the summer months, things were going great. Learning and discovering new things and applying them to the bigger picture. Unfortunately, I was two-days from making my 90-day probation period when it was decided to let me go. I was crushed.
Asking for feedback on why it was not going to work. I was surprised to hear what I heard. There was a disagreement with upper management on what my role was exactly. So they decided to start over with the position. That was it. That's what I left with. At this point, it was quite literally back to square one. Get the resume out, start applying again, what will I do now? were all questions and thoughts going through my head. A voice of reason came to me when I needed it most - the same guy that had asked me to help start his business heard what just happened to me. He called me and said, "You should consider doing more SEO work we have plenty of referrals that we can start you off with."
More or less I took his advice. Especially, after my experience with the construction company and coming to realize that I am passionate about the SEO industry and I have proved my methods and techniques work. After a little thought and some discussion with my better half. I decided to take a leap of faith so to speak and begin my own SEO firm in the Rochester, MN area. I was able to get a few referrals from Amped Auto & Audio Accessories and pick up 3 additional clients in a pretty quick time frame. Again, I will be discussing the details of these clients in additional posts.
Since September 2018 I began working and developing solely on Search Engine Optimization and website development for clients within the Rochester, MN area. All the while not having my own website or even a business name. Till recently, December 1st. I officially launched my firm's website and this very blog as well develop a logo! I decided to keep it ultra simple and name the company RMS or Rochester MN SEO.
This is the back story if you will, to how I created an SEO firm and where I started. I look forward to seeing where this new path will take me. For more information visit our new website at www.rochestermnseo.com and follow us on twitter @RochMNseo