The better you learn and understand SEO and the more strides you take to learn this seemingly confusing and complex discipline, the more likely you'll be to appear organically in search results. And let's face it, organic search is important to marketing online. Considering that most people don't have massive advertising budgets and don't know the first thing about lead magnets, squeeze pages and sales funnels, appearing visible is critical towards long-term success.
Years ago, you could get away with not having an online presence because your competition doesn’t. But today, customers expect at least a website and an active social media account. The further beyond that (such as investing in SEO, for example), the better. Plus, having an online presence when your competition doesn’t is just about the most obvious and easiest way to get far ahead of them.