7 Reasons Why Doing SEO is Like Going to the Gym

PushON | June 22nd 2010

As an SEO who has recently started going to the gym more often, I randomly came up with the following comparisons:

1. Long term effort

As with SEO, you have to play the long-term game at the gym, as you can’t just do one day’s work and expect to see results. You have to commit to it to reap the rewards.

2. Copying the competition isn’t always best

If your entire SEO strategy is based around what your competitors are doing then you may struggle to beat them – and similar to the gym: what works for somebody else may not necessarily work for you.

3. Distribute your time

To run a successful SEO campaign you can’t just focus on 1 area to improve, it has to be a relevant mix. Should you do link building for longevity (cardio at the gym)? Or should you work with what you have already got by tweaking on-page factors (weight lifting at the gym)?

4. Don’t be put off

There may be bigger and better competitors (or people) in your area, but that isn’t to say you can’t be successful. Measure success by your own metrics, not somebody else’s.

5. You can help by doing other activities

Just because you are doing SEO (or working out at the gym) doesn’t mean you can’t do other things to help your website (or fitness…). PPC and PR may help you get quicker results from an online marketing campaign, just as dieting may help you get fit quicker.

6. Avoid temptation of underhand tactics

A temptation can creep in when you are working on a long-term strategy, and that is to get quick-wins via underhand methods. ‘Black hat’ SEO may seem like a good idea, and work initially, but can cause issues further down the line – similar to taking steroids to aid your training at the gym.

7. Baseline your results

Running an SEO campaign for 6 months could be great, but you won’t be able to form a comparison unless you baseline the results before starting. Similar to the gym, you can work hard, but unless you know the areas you are improving then you won’t be able to gauge whether it has been a success.

So there you have it – 7 reasons why doing SEO is like going the gym (I was going to do 10 but couldn’t think of anymore, so feel free to add yours in the comments!)