4 months ago, I had a local law firm split up, one partner kept the firm and the other started his own smaller firm, who told me he could afford to retain us at $2k/month. I told him it would be a bit of a ramp-up period, which he said he was prepared for but come to find out he wasn't and 3 months later he switches to a local marketing agency promising him the world. They've been doing some black-hat link building with a little success, but I'm having a hard time competing with marketing agencies and big players in the legal SEO industry lately.
A year prior, I had a big firm ($3k/month) leave for one of the major legal players (Scorpion Designs), and with $5k/month out the door over the past year, and my website struggling to rank for the big legal SEO terms, I've fallen behind. I've had a hard time competing with the big legal SEO companies, and on top of it my website was hacked 2 months ago and I've had literally no leads coming in. I've been taking on random outsourced projects for $700/month which I told myself I would never do, but I guess I have to pay the bills somehow. It's been killing my motivation, there's nothing worse than money problems filling your day with stress and hopefully you understand the urgency given that I'm posting this.
I finally got my site back up and am rebranding, but it's getting tough with 15 years of experience, I'm now working from home because I had to let my office space go, and I guess I'm looking for anyone who can chime in and help me get out of this rut.
How are you adding new clients? Are they paying as much as they used to (if you do SEO)? My average monthly retainer when I started my company in 2012 was $3k-$5k and I had no problem landing clients at this level. Lately, signing up a $3k/month client would basically be like me hitting the lottery. How can I get out of this loser mindset and get back to managing a lower number of higher-end clients, or generate more leads? Any feedback is appreciated, I still enjoy SEO and I consider myself really good at it, I just need some insight from anyone who has been doing this for a while and managed to continue to evolve in an increasingly competitive SEO landscape in 2019.