Excessive optimization could be considered a sickness depending on context. Look up compulsive disorders in Diagnosis and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V) and over- optimization fits description fairly well. So, should most online home business owners be seen by a psychotherapist? Well, I won't answer that as of now since it doesn't bode well for my immediate physical health. But one thing is for sure: web site optimization is tricky business.
The search engines are in an all out war to be best. Since content is king, they are all striving to develop all around best algorithm to deliver most relevant search results. They are thus in a constant state of flux, which in turn wreaks havoc on our nerves as online home business owners.
You see, search engines are one of best forms of free traffic. And we all know that to run a successful online business, traffic is a must. Most home based web businesses start out on very restrictive budgets. I know mine did, and still is. So, when toss up is time or money, I, like many others probably do, chose to work with time.
In walks optimization. You must be on your toes to stay ahead of every changing SEs. You must periodically evaluate your site's content to ensure that you aren't bumped to low indexes. But this can easily get carried away into what I like to call over-optimization, and then you probably should consult DSM- V.
Traffic is important. There is no doubt about it. But there must be a balance. So ultimate question is not whether you should or shouldn't optimize, but how much time you should spend on it in terms of other site promotion methodologies.
Try to divide your time. In beginning I focused heavily on search engine optimization. Slowly, after several months of realizing that process never ends,(I too consulted DSM-V and had Freud give me a swift kick in tushy.) my focus began to shift to a host of promotion techniques. Here is a short list of some of primary traffic generators I work with.
(1) Writing articles, such as this one, to share my experiences with others and of course provide a link to my site at end. Guess what? If someone picks it up and decides to publish any of my articles on their site, I get bonus points from search engines. Why? Reciprocal linking of course. The link shows that someone else values my site, and as a result my ranking increases.