1. Stop thinking in terms of the least you can get away with, and concentrate on the best you can do.
2. Evaluate your site and your niche realistically and objectively, and if you can't do that, find someone who can (and is not afraid to tell you the truth).
1. Make sure the site is technically sound.
2. Focus on users. Focus on users. FOCUS ON THE FREAKING USERS.
3. User TESTING (it's cheap and effective)
4. Manage your expectations (specially when it comes to Google)
5. Don't take what Google does personally (good or bad).
6. Always be working on more traffic channels, even if you're wildly successful in Google.
7. Recognize when it's time to move on to something else.