I’ve always been a little wary of SEO, or search engine optimization. I even turned down a recent writing opportunity because the company asked me to use “an SEO friendly subject and phrases” in my finished article. It set off my alarms, and I decided it wasn’t worth the publicity.
When people tell me I need to improve my own, I look at them like they just asked me to write lengthy and frequent blog posts about Lady Gaga. If my blog isn’t popular, I think, it’s because I don’t blog frequently enough, or about the right topics. How is being a top search result going to change that?
My friend Aaron Clark finally convinced me to do something about it. He’s an SEO professional, which explains why his website, EvaGeeks.org, shows up on the very first page of any Google search for Evangelion. He convinced me by saying that I wouldn’t have to do anything and I could just pay him. Sounded like a deal to me.
I still think SEO falls in an ethical gray area, so we had an in-depth talk about what to change. Most of the optimizations were changes my blog needed anyway, like cleaning up code bloat and removing features I no longer use.
He’s not done yet, but I’ve already noticed a few changes. Such as:
- My traffic from search engines went up from 15 percent of my total traffic to 30 percent.
- I’ve started getting email from people who tell me they found Otaku Journalist through a Google search.
- A PR representative asked me to review their TV show on my blog.
I’ve been blogging for almost two years, but those are all new experiences for me. I haven’t altered my posting habits or surged in popularity, so I know this is Aaron’s work. That means that more traffic, more email and PR requests are perks I’d already earned without changing my content. Now, my only regret is not optimizing sooner.
Geek, subculture and anime bloggers should seriously consider SEO. I was too quick to assume that low traffic was the fault of my unconventional coverage. I used to think optimizing would mean changing the way I write. But it turned out I only had to shift a few things behind the scenes to connect with the audience I already had.
I have to hand it to Aaron on this one. He really understood my geek aesthetic and my concerns. If you’re interested in hiring him for your SEO, you can reach him here.