This is actually a complex issue because the Internet has changed so quickly and so much especially in the last 2-3 years.
Google controls the Internet and has had several updates. As well as getting rid of 100,000’s of online sites (overnight) deemed to be of inferior quality with poor, old or non-original content.
Here is an extract: “Each year, Google changes its search algorithm around 500–600 times. While most of these changes are minor, Google occasionally rolls out a “major” algorithmic update (such as Google Panda and Google Penguin) that affects search results in significant ways”.
Some experienced marketers have seen their sites and incomes wiped out overnight, including those relying on PPC (Pay-Per-Click) marketing which has always been one of the fastest ways to make money from scratch.
It’s all to do with Google’s image, their goals and their determination to provide users with the best experiences possible.
My difficult answer to the question is “No” because a huge number of small to medium businesses are now online. This a goldmine for affiliate marketers who now have up to 75 million products to promote.
It’s been a goldmine also for consultants, graphic/video artists, copywriters, offline marketers and software developers who provide necessary products and services to these businesses..
There has been an almost daily explosion of new products and systems, coaching and webinars to help marketers at all levels become successful quickly and make their dreams a reality.
Also look at Fiverr and Fourerr for example. Countless thousands of products and services available 24/7 for just a few dollars.
Overall what is happening is “more competitive” and “more demanding” rather than “harder”.
1. You have to make sure your sites and pages stand out from the crowd. You can’t be just another ant.
2. Your sites and pages must look great and be easy to navigate. No sloppy spelling and grammar.
3. They must load quickly. Google wants this and so do your visitors.
4. You must spend more time with research and planning prior to launching.
5. It’s more important than ever that you’re operating with the best and less competitive niche/s.
6. You must include mobile and video marketing wherever possible.
7. Social media networks especially Facebook, have exploded with new ideas. Minor networks have become top dog.
8. You need to spend more money to be the best you can be. Experienced Internet marketers say $300 to $400 when starting but not necessarily at one time.
9. You need to be alert and responsive. More entrepreneurial. You can’t sit and wait for magic to happen without effort.
10. Seize the day and look for opportunities.
Summing up, I would say that most of the above is common-sense anyway, and maybe we should be doing these things already.