I think you're right to a degree, Janeth. But the phrase "You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink." occurs to me in relation to client sites. My sites are doing fine. But I have them automated to do what they need to do, and I add content usually a minimum of twice a week, sometimes more. And I'm aware always of keyphrases, and tweak for them as I write.
But telling a client that's what he or she needs to do to succeed doesn't mean the lesson sticks. I give them the tool. They have to USE it.
So, for some clients, having someone do the onsite stuff is the only way their sites will ever get any visibility.