Texas SEO Director Raises Awareness of Concerns of Declining Mental Health Among SEO Consultants

Texas-based digital marketing consultant and SEO strategist, Zach Doty has announced the release of the Inaugural SEO Mental Health Survey: a study into the issues of stress, burnout, and mental health that may plague thousands of SEO consultants in the industry.

The survey reveals concerns of declining mental health for members of the SEO industry. According to the results, almost two-thirds of respondents struggled often with burnout and anxiety. Over a third of respondents often struggled with aspects of depression.

On average, 57% of respondents answered “Often” or “Very Often” to the concerns raised in the burnout section, which included questions such as “I feel like I have little or no physical or emotional energy at work,” “I feel like I have more work than time or ability to do it,” “I struggle with apathy or negative thoughts toward my job,” “I feel a pressure to succeed that interferes with my happiness,” and many more.

When it came to the topic of anxiety, on average, 65% of respondents answered “Often” or “Very Often” to the anxiety section, which included questions such as “I feel anxious, nervous, or on-edge about work,” “I become easily annoyed or irritable at work,” “I feel afraid as if something awful will happen at work,” “I have been unable to stop worrying about work,” and others.

Finally, Zach found that 35% of respondents indicated “Often” or “Very Often” to questions related to feelings of depression such as “I have little interest or pleasure in doing things,” “I feel down, depressed, or hopeless,” “I have trouble falling or staying asleep, or sleeping too much,” “I have had thoughts that I would be better off dead, or of hurting myself,” and more.

On his website, Zach talks about the reasoning behind surveying his peers by saying, “This survey was born out of ongoing conversations with colleagues, friends, and acquaintances in the SEO space. On good days, everyone felt tired, but the same theme seemed to emerge: are things supposed to be so hard?”

The survey was posted on multiple online portals such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and others where SEO consultants, copywriters, marketers, and other industry professionals regularly visit and maintain a public-facing presence on. In the end, the survey of SEO consultants with more than 25 questions was answered by over 80 people and offered a unique insight into the temperature of the SEO community.

Of the respondents, 59% were male and 41% were female. 6% were just starting in the industry and had around zero to three years of experience, 65% had between four to 10 years of experience, and 29% had been in the SEO industry for more than a decade. 60% of respondents worked for an agency, 16% owned their agencies, and 24% were freelance consultants. 9% of survey respondents were from Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, 17% were from Latin America, and 74% were from North America.

The report, which is available in full on Zach’s website, is supplemented with charts, detailed analyses of the responses that each of the questions received, information about the topics covered in the questionnaire, and Zach’s personal experiences from working in the industry for more than 10 years. The report ends with an overall summary of everything that Zach learned from the survey and what he hopes the industry can change to alleviate the anxiety, burnout, and depression that his fellow SEO industry professionals are dealing with.

When asked to summarize his closing thoughts from the survey, Zach noted, “While I had an inkling before I undertook this project that the mental health of SEO professionals was on a decline, I was nonetheless alarmed by the results. The problems are not country- or company-specific. Moreover, as you spend more time in the SEO industry, the higher the likelihood that you will eventually face these problems. To remedy some of these concerns, apart from examining how we operate daily and the kind of business practices that we promote, we also have to build stronger relationships with our teammates to ensure a considerate and welcoming work environment.”

Readers who are interested in viewing the results of the survey in detail can visit the website of SEO Director Zach Doty. His full set of competencies includes SEO strategy, digital marketing and website strategy, technical marketing, content marketing and development, marketing analytics, mentoring and public speaking, and agency and team development.


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Zach Doty
Zach Doty