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How Much Does SEO Cost: Tips to Optimize Your Web Traffic

By November 20, 2020November 20th, 2023No Comments

SEO Cost

Strategies to Assure You Find the Right SEO for the Right Cost

Over 3.5 billion people search on Google every day. Yet an astonishing 54% of businesses don’t have any funds allocated to SEO, despite it being the marketing activity that will create the most awareness and engagement with your product or service.

SEO isn’t left out of budgets because businesses don’t recognize its importance. More often, the problem is that marketers don’t know how to determine their SEO cost and then pitch it, alongside the predicted ROI to key stakeholders.

In this post, we’re going to share our tips for estimating the cost of your local and organic SEO, and PPC ads so that you can start investing in the strategies that are right for your business. Grab a pen and paper, it’s time to swot up!

Local SEO

Local SEO is the process of optimizing your digital marketing efforts to attract customers from relevant local searches. For example, when you type “coffee shop near me” into Google Maps, you’re shown the nearest stores to your current location. That’s local SEO in action.

Community-based businesses can focus on developing a comprehensive local SEO plan in lieu of more comprehensive organic SEO or PPC strategies, which are more time consuming and expensive. After all, if you own a coffee shop in New York, having your store pop up to searchers in Miami isn’t going to increase your bottom line!

Optimizing your digital assets for local search is easy to do. Google Reviews, accurate business listings, and accessible contact information are the key to performing well, and they’re free to set up with platforms such as Google My Business. Businesses with more than one location will need to take extra measures, so check out our tips for multiple locations if this applies to you.

If you want to go a step further, an agency can land you a spot in Google’s Snack Pack. (i.e. the boxed area at the top of the first result page that displays the top three business listings related to your search). Many clicks go to the snack pack options, so it should always be your goal.

Local search cost varies depending on the number of locations and scope of work but it’s the most affordable option on this list.

Organic Search

Ultimately, organic SEO offers the highest ROI when compared to local SEO and PPC. Organic SEO includes the listings that appear underneath paid ads, or at the top of a search. They’re organic due to the fact that they are determined by Google’s search algorithm—they aren’t influenced by advertising dollars the way that PPC ads are.

Performing well in organic search requires a multi-faceted digital marketing plan that combines content creation with website optimization and excellent keyword research. In other words, you need to play the long game. The good news is that once you start to rank, you’ll reap the rewards for a long time at a low cost.

Results for organic searches focus on specific queries, meaning that the traffic you receive is more likely to be in need of your product/ service. In other words, those who find your site are more likely to follow through and buy. This is why it’s an integral component of nearly all SEO strategies.

Calculating the cost of organic search optimization can be challenging, given that there are so many layers to a great organic strategy.

An SEO cost calculator can provide a good starting point but you’ll also need to include the cost of SEO software in your total expenditure. Using an agency for organic search can be a more cost-effective option, as they’ll have access to specialized tools that guarantee your budget is being spent on the right activities.

Pay Per Click

Pay Per Click advertising (PPC) can have a major impact on your business and if you aren’t using PPC at all, you’re missing out on valuable traffic to your site. PPC ads are used at any stage of the marketing funnel to nurture consumers. Advertise content, newsletters, products, and your app to increase visibility and get noticed!

The benefits of PPC are plentiful. You can set up ads and see results instantly, unlike organic SEO which takes time, and effort to get the same positioning. PPC targeting options can also help you reach people who aren’t already in your target audience as well  those who have already engaged with you.

2018 Google report found that every $1 spent on Google Ads returned an average of $2, so explaining the ROI of PPC to stakeholders is usually an easy affair! Regarding the cost, you can set up your own PPC ads and pay as you go or use an agency to write the copy and divide funds according to their experience.

On the other hand, PPC is generally the more expensive approach to ranking in Google. We generally recommend PPC for short-term campaigns e.g. product launches, promotions, and months when you need a boost in revenue are all great times to take the plunge into PPC. Check out Maximizing Your Ad Spend: How Much Do Google Ads Cost? to learn how to decide between organic SEO and PPC.

Agencies often use a percentage of spend” pricing model for PPC, charging 15-30% on average plus a management fee that varies based on the size of your account. Others will use a flat rate management fee to avoid cost inflation.

Agency vs DIY

Many businesses begin their SEO journey in-house. In such cases, business owners inevitably get to a point where they’re not sure what to do or they’re not seeing any ROI. This is where an experienced marketing agency will maximize your ROI to get the most out of your budget. You can hire an agency for one area of your SEO, such as organic search or PPC, or ask them to design a complete, unified strategy that gets your results across all channels.

Fees vary depending on whether you choose an hourly rate, project pack, or a monthly retainer. A monthly retainer contract fee ranges between $1,000-$100,000, whilst hourly rates can range from $50-$500, depending on the experience and specialisms required. Project rates are more difficult to predict, as the size, scope, and duration of your project will affect the cost.

Calculate Your SEO Cost With Confidence

Deciding to invest in SEO is the best way to increase your brand’s visibility and drive high potential traffic to your website. Use the information in this article to estimate your SEO cost and compare it to the lifetime value of your customers. If you want to grow, you need SEO!

Specialists can focus your SEO budget on the activities most likely to bring in new, long-lasting clients. Get in touch to discuss SEO optimization costs for your business and we’ll show you how far that investment can take you.