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How Much Does SEO Cost? 5 Experts Reveal the Truth

BY Ann Whittaker In Profitability On Oct 02, 2014 With 5 Comments

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Did you get a chance to watch our interview with SEO Godfather, Rand Fishkin? Were you totally inspired to get going on your SEO strategy?

So how much does SEO cost? We gathered 5 SEO experts to answer your question.

Here's what you'll find in this article:

1. Shocking Search Engine Optimization Statistics

2. Quick & Easy Definitions of  Inbound Content

3. How To Spend Your Time Effeciently With Digital Marketing

4. How To Spend Your Money Effeiciently With SEO

SEO: The Cold, Hard Facts

You're so busy trying to find new customers, and you're not so convinced that search engine optimization will work for your small business. Sure, sure. Welcome to the 21st century. Today would be a good day to start planning to implement SEO into your marketing strategy. Here's why:

seo_stats

mobile_local_charts

Pretty convincing, ya? The majority of adults in America use the internet daily, and often use it to help them make purchasing decisions. So you want to be there when they need you, providing helpful and relevant content. Not quite sure what we're talking about when we say "content," "inbound" and "outbound?" Here's a quick 101:

content_defined

How Much Time Does It Cost?

What The Experts Say:

timdugan

"Start doing what you can on your own. Chip away at it, and don't stop! SEO is a lengthy process that requires investment and constant attention. You need to stick to it. It won't happen overnight." -Tim Dugan, Zero Gravity Marketing

 

lisabarone

"Once your site is crafted to meet the needs of a user, you need to promote it. You can do so by claiming your online listings, by linkbuilding, by being proactive about online reviews and by paying attention to media relations. It sounds like a lot, and it can be as you're trying to build a business at the same time, but the actions themselves are very natural to what you're already doing...Give yourself an hour or two a week and see how much you can get done. You'd be surprised." - Lisa Barone, Overit.com

 

brian

"To see results from [your] efforts in-house, I'd work 2-3 hours a week. SEO doesn't have to be a big time investment because it can be better incorporated as part of your other marketing efforts. When writing a blog post that'll help with your SEO, you're also using content marketing to build trust and interest with your audience, while creating content for sharing on your social channels. Time is valuable when you're running your own business. Therefore, make smart moves that consolidate your efforts and drive results." - Brian Honigman, Marketing Consultant

 

ross_hudgens

"The best way is to start building content with the expertise you already have, and then tell people about it. If you don't have expertise, develop it, because if you don't have it in some way, you probably don't have a viable business, whether it's product development, writing, or etc...It's a long, long slog towards success, but getting to the top is worth it." - Ross Hudgens, Siege Media

 

michael_g_keating

"Results can start to surface after around 9 months and working with a team of experts can expedite results." - Michael G. Keating, BRIM Agency

 

 

Key Takeaways:

  1. SEO should take 2-3 hours of your time each week.
  2. SEO needs to be a natural part of all your marketing efforts.
  3. SEO is a long-term investment which could take 9 months before you start seeing results.

How Much Money Does It Cost?

More and more companies are investing in digital marketing. We suggest to our clients that they invest 6-8% of their revenue on marketing. Here's how most companies are investing in digital marketing:

2014_digital_marketing

What The Experts Say:

michael_g_keating

"Small businesses can get started with SEO very easily. They just need to determine what is the best option for their specific needs. The 3 more common directions a company can go are to work with a freelancer/independent contractor, an agency, or bring someone in-house to manage their SEO campaign. Each option has its own unique pros and cons with different associated costs. A small business can find out-of-the-box SEO Packages for under $300/month or they can pay well over $10,000/month. - Michael G. Keating, BRIM Agency

 

ross_hudgens

"The consequences of not taking SEO seriously is a loss of traffic--oftentimes a very serious one that's hard to recover from." - Ross Hudgens, Siege Media

 

lisabarone

"[If a company does not invest in SEO they'll] lose their business. Your website is the face and the voice of your brand on the Web. It's often the first interaction potential customers have with you, and it's where they go first looking for information. If growing your business is a priority, then growing the assets your customers use to find you is most certainly also a priority." - Lisa Barone, Overit.com

 

brian

"The cost of not investing in SEO as a small business is not coming up for relevant searches in Google and other search engines. Local SEO is the most important for small businesses because this is typically how many find your organization in your neighborhood from their mobile device. For example, if you're a pizza shop in Crown Heights and your business isn't found for the search terms "pizza in crown heights," then you're missing out on potential customers." - Brian Honigman, Marketing Consultant

 

timdugan

"Local SEO statistics show that 59% of consumers use Google every month to find a reputable, local business. Numbers like this confirm that we're living in a digital age where consumers are utilizing technology to find what they need, including local products and services, making SEO important for any business, large or small. However, investing such time and money in SEO can be difficult, especially for a small business without much of a marketing budget. This should not deter small business owners. There are plenty of resources, many of which are free, out there to get started." - Tim Dugan, Zero Ground Marketing

Key Takeaways:

  1. SEO Packages can cost anywhere from $300-$10,000 per month.
  2. Not investing in digital marketing can cost you a loss of customers and, potentially, your business (yikes!).
  3. Investing time and money in local SEO efforts can boost growth and revenue.

You can do it! Start by investing a little time and money into your new inbound marketing strategy, but stick to it! Slow and steady wins the race, right? Once you start helping more customers online (and helping them find you!), you'll be able to invest more into growing your business. 

So, stop marketing the old-school way, and get going on your search engine optimization strategy so you stop looking like this:

Here's a few more links to help you use SEO to get more profitable.


Free Resources

Beginner's Guide To SEO (Moz.com)

2014 Beginner's Guide To SEO (Search Engine Journal)

Keyword Tools

Google Keyword Planner

Hubspot (What we use and LOVE!)

Moz


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Links To Helpful SEO Expert Articles:

"Creating Your Small Business SEO Plan", Lisa Barone, Overit.com

"How To Measure the ROI from SEO Campaigns" Brian Honigman

"Why You're Lying to Yourself About Keyword Difficulty" Ross Hudgens, Siege Media

"Are You and Your Website Ready for Holiday Season 2014?" BRIM Agency

"10 Mind-Blowing Digital Marketing Statistics" Tim Dugan, Zero Gravity Marketing

 

Content Manager at Ignite Spot who climbs mountains on the weekends so she can drink her tea and enjoy the view.

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