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Gotch SEO Academy Review: Nathan Gotch’s 2 Phases to Create Time and Financial Freedom

March 16, 2024

Gotch SEO Academy is a digital marketing agency course and coaching program that teaches you how to create and scale your own SEO agency business. Created by SEO expert Nathan Gotch, its goal is to teach agency owners to create time and financial freedom using Nathan's 2-phase strategy.

Gotch SEO Academy reviews are mixed and provide various perspectives on its value and effectiveness. Students who had positive experience praise the actionable strategies taught in the course and comprehensive white-hat SEO techniques training. Critics argue that the mentorship program is overpriced and that one can find similar lessons for free or at a lower cost elsewhere. Reviews from students are sparse outside of the official website.

This in-depth review uncovers Nathan Gotch's exclusive 2-phase strategy for scaling SEO agencies, offering valuable insights into his methods. You will also discover what you get with academy, who it is for, and who Nathan Gotch is. We will also be discussing if an SEO agency is worth it and what other business models create passive income using SEO.

Gotch SEO Academy Pros and Cons


Lifetime access to unlimited coaching.

Nathan only teaches white-hat SEO tactics.

Nathan is a renowned SEO expert featured in articles by SEO related companies.


You need to invest $2,500 to $10,000 per month.

Limited refund policy.

Not a lot of information on the program is given out transparently.


Goth SEO Academy costs $9,000 to $11,000 for lifetime access, with payment plans as low as $500 per month. There are also upsells such as the done-for-you SEO service.

Refund Policy

Gotch SEO Academy has a 3-day money-back guarantee.




Mixed reputation

Key Takeaways:

  • 2-Phase Strategy: Nathan's approach involves a two-phase strategy aimed at building a successful digital marketing agency that provides financial and time freedom.
  • The course includes a step-by-step guide on SEO fundamentals like keyword research, on-page optimization, link building, technical SEO, content marketing, and competitive analysis.
  • Choose from Gotch SEO Academy's tailored courses: 'SEO Specialist' for beginners or 'SEO Expert' for advanced learners, catering to all levels of SEO proficiency.
  • Earn a prestigious Gotch SEO Academy certification upon course completion, enhancing your professional credibility in the SEO industry.
  • Gotch SEO Academy also provides a done-for-you SEO service, handling lead generation and Google search optimization for those who prefer not to do it themselves.

2 Phases to Create Time and Financial Freedom

Nathan Gotch’s mission is to teach how to create and scale a successful digital marketing agency business. The goal is to have your business making you money on autopilot so that you can create time and financial freedom.

Phase 1: Results > Retention > Referrals

The first phase covers the service-first model that focuses on the three big R’s:

  1. Results - According to Nathan, “Results are the single variable that will differentiate you in a sea of over-promise.” Delivering consistent results is 50% of the success equation.
  2. Retention - According to a Harvard assessment, retaining an existing client is estimated to be 5-25 times more cost-effective than acquiring a new one. Keeping existing clients is more cost-efficient than getting new ones and, as such, should be top priority. Delivering positive results and experience is how you achieve this.
  3. Referrals - A study by Backlinko found that only 30% of clients refer their SEO service provider to friends or colleagues. You can get more clients through referrals by delivering exceptional results and building long-lasting relationships with satisfied clients.

Phase 2: Attack > Attract > Ascend

Phase 2 begins once your digital marketing agency is consistently delivering results and building long-term relationships with satisfied clients. The 2nd phase focuses on scaling using the three big A’s:

  1. Attack - Use effective outbound techniques to grow your client list. Nathan warns not to use pushy sales tactics when doing outbound marketing.
  2. Attract - Inbound leads are more cost and time efficient than outbound marketing. You don't need to have a large online presence to attract high-quality leads on autopilot.
  3. Ascend - Nathan claims that the best way to increase revenue is to increase lifetime value as opposed to getting as many clients as you can. Increasing lifetime value is done by selling more services and products to existing clients.

What’s in the Gotch SEO Academy?

There are 2 membership options offered. Both membership gives you access to the step-by-step SEO Specialist course, weekly coaching calls, the community forums, and library of resources. Upon completion of the course, students also get a Gotch SEO Academy certification to showcase their expertise to help build trusts and get more clients.

Membership options:

SEO Specialist: This membership is best for beginners., You’ll have access to the SEO Specialist course that covers the fundamentals of SEO, such as keyword research, on-page optimization, and link building.

SEO Expert: With this advanced membership, you’ll get access to both the SEO Specialist and SEO Expert courses. The Expert course covers advanced topics like technical SEO, content marketing, and competitive analysis.

Gotch SEO also offers a done-for-you SEO service in which their team will handle lead generation and Google search optimization. This is a separate service for those without the time to do it themselves.

Who Is Gotch SEO Academy For?

  • Aspiring entrepreneurs who want to start a digital marketing agency with a focus on SEO services.
  • Existing digital marketing agency owners who want to learn basic or advanced SEO tactics.
  • Freelance digital marketers who want to learn advanced SEO tactics or want to create their own agency.

Are Students of Gotch SEO Academy Successful?

There are tons of student success stories on the Gotch SEO Academy website. These are both from beginners who created their agency from scratch and existing agencies who were able to scale with help from the academy.

This testimonial from Zacc Dukowitz explains how he grew his organic traffic by 59% year-over-year growth. What adds more to the authenticity of these testimonials is that the names of the agencies are displayed which allows you to search and verify how these agencies are doing.

CopyTrends is a fairly new digital marketing agency that specializes in SEO. The owner, Dan Ansaldo, proudly displays in the company description that he learned his SEO expertise from Gotch SEO Academy. The Kansas City-based agency is doing well and is highly rated on Trustpilot.

These are just few of the students who found success by applying what they learned from the program. Keep in mind that results will still depend on the student and how they apply what they learn from the course. Note that Gotch SEO Academy has had tens of thousands of students and these success stories only make a tiny percentage. Finding success with a digital marketing agency is still a difficult and risky investment and could take several months to a few years.

Who Is Nathan Gotch?

Nathan Gotch is a renowned SEO expert and founder of Gotch SEO Academy. Based in St. Louis, Missouri, he established the SEO marketing agency, Gotch Digital, in 2014. He has a degree in political science from Principia College and is the author of the best-selling book, ‘The SEO Entrepreneur.’ His SEO expertise is featured in Semrush, Ahrefs, and Search Engine Journal. Nathan Gotch has generated millions in revenue from selling SEO services, particularly excelling in challenging sectors such as health, legal, and SaaS.

Nathan Gotch - Important Change to SEO (New Google Algorithm Update)

Nathan posted a video on his YouTube channel about the March 2024 Google algorithm update focuses on penalizing low-quality, AI-generated content and poor user experiences, while rewarding unique and original content. In the video, he emphasizes ethical SEO practices, advocating for content that genuinely serves business purposes and appeals to human readers. High-quality, relevant content, backed by authoritative links, is crucial for maintaining good SEO standing. The update targets the most blatant SEO abuses, encouraging a more user-centric approach to content creation.

Google updates their algorithm regularly, so it is important for SEO specialist to keep stay up to date with the latest information. This creates additional challenges for SEO agencies who are trying to scale, as they will need to find a balance between output, quality, and costs. Indeed, joining programs that deal with SEO specialization can be a big help with adjusting your strategies to be on top of the algorithm updates.

Is an SEO Agency Worth It in 2024?

The SEO Agency business is a saturated industry in 2024, but can be worth it with the right skill-set and business strategies. It is very challenging for new agencies to establish themselves because of many factors, such as clients favoring more established agencies. Initially, you might have to offer services for free or at a reduced rate to attract clients. Many courses neglect to mention the necessity of marketing your own agency, which involves substantial investment in marketing, such as pay-per-click advertising, lead generation, sales funnels, etc., which adds additional risks. You can opt to gain experience while building a portfolio by working for an agency or doing freelance.

Use SEO to Create Low-Cost Passive Income With Local Lead Generation

Local lead generation is my recommended business model that uses SEO to create passive income. As a type of digital real estate business, you rank a site on Google using SEO and earn predictable monthly income by renting it out to local businesses. You don’t have to do any paid marketing to get clients, which reduces the starting and operating costs. It costs as low as $500 in initial investment to start and as low as $30 a month to maintain. You also only need to outrank a handful of sites in your local area instead of competing with thousands of established agencies.

Unlike a digital marketing business, local lead generation brings in passive income right away when your site is rented. To scale local lead generation, all you have to do is repeat the rank and rent process. But scaling a digital marketing business requires increasing your marketing budget and outsourcing. These qualities make local lead generation is the best business model to create time and financial freedom using SEO.

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Ippei Kanehara

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

His #1 online business recommendation in 2024, is to build your own lead generation business.

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