How Much Does SEO Cost | How Much is SEO?

How is SEO Pricing Determined?
If you run an online business, you likely need to hire a professional SEO team to boost your digital profile. But how much do these services cost and how is SEO pricing determined? We’ll explain in this article.
Keyword(s): seo pricing
Getting your site optimized by an SEO professional can be a tricky thing to approach. Determining how much you want to get out of the experience is key, but with something as fluid as the internet, how do you know that you’re going to get what you pay for?

There are a number of different SEO services on the market, each one costing a different price. For that reason, it’s difficult to pin down just how much SEO services cost. That being said, there are some general lines you can draw to determine the range that you’re looking at.

This article will help you to approach SEO pricing.

How to Approach SEO Pricing
Before you get in touch with a professional, you should read our article on How SEO Works. There are a lot of factors that go into optimizing a site, and you may have personal preferences on what to focus on when you hire someone.

You’ll also want to consider your current situation. Is your site optimized already? If so, why do you want to hire someone to do the work?

Where do you want to be when your site is optimized?

Why Professionals are Necessary
The internet is always changing, and with it, search engine algorithms find new ways to be effective for users. When things change on the internet, your SEO tactics should change as well. In fact, one significant development in Google could ruin your optimization strategy.

For example, Google’s search engine algorithm was straightforward until about 2015. Actually, it was very complicated, but the process was pretty consistent. The algorithm focused on link authority, freshness, keywords, and 200 other factors that determined a site’s relevance.

In 2015, they introduced the artificial intelligence program, RankBrain, which judges not by the keywords in your search, but by the intentions of the person searching. The program can read a query and infer generally what the user was looking for when they typed it.

Because of this, SEO strategies have had to change. Things like RankBrain make it clear that having a professional handle your optimization is an investment that’s pretty much necessary.

What Services do You Want?
You can find freelance professionals, hired staff, or individual gurus to optimize your site for you. In any of those cases, you’ll need to flesh out the specifics of your agreement. Before you get into the nitty-gritty, you should know the going rate for specific services.

Monthly Services
A monthly plan is probably the best way to effectively optimize your site for the long term. Different companies will offer different services, so you should base your pricing according to what you’re getting.

Monthly services focus on a number of things. To start, they optimize your site for different regions. Whether you have a specific target audience in a state or country, you can choose to tailor your site to that place’s search habits.

With both a local and regional optimization you can spread your business further than you could if you were optimizing your site alone. There’s a lot of data on keyword analytics.

This data shows the habits of people in specific areas. It also shows what keywords successful sites are using to optimize their site, and why those keywords are so successful. That data is often used by SEO professionals to optimize for local and regional success.

Local Optimization
You should look into local optimization if you’re a smaller business looking to develop a lot of traffic within your community. This service will tailor your website to come up in the searches of users in your area.

Regional Optimization
This service is more valuable for those who are looking to attract national attention. Your target audience would be entire states, regions, and countries. These services can vary widely in price as well, probably coming in a little bit higher than local SEO.

Local and regional SEO can both fall anywhere between $650 to $10,000 dollars per month.

Hourly Work
An hourly wage would likely come from a freelancer or someone similar. This is going to be at the discretion of the worker. Their wage will depend on their level of experience, education, and success as an SEO professional.

If you’re hiring an hourly professional, make sure to consider your options wisely and carefully. SEO is a global market, outsourcing your services may be a cheaper option.

One-Time Optimization
This service is exactly what it sounds like. A company will give your site an optimization and consult with you afterward. Beyond that point, the business between you is effectively complete.

The pricing of this kind of service can vary tens of thousands of dollars. It really depends on a few things. Most importantly, you need to hire someone in your price range. Some job-sites have freelancers available to optimize your site for any price you set. Other professionals can charge up to 100,000 dollars for this service.

If your site is large and complex, holding a good deal of domain authority, your prices are likely to be pretty high. Alternatively, if you have a small website it shouldn’t get too costly to optimize.

Website Audit
This is also a one-time service provided by SEO professionals. The audit is essentially an analysis of your site’s current optimization. The professional will lay out the data on how your site engages with the search engine and suggest some changes.

In fact, they will give you the lowdown on how you can optimize your site personally. this is a great option for a person who is new to SEO but thinks that they could benefit from optimizing their site on their own. These services, again, can range tens of thousands of dollars.

Common Aspects of Service
Your SEO experience should at least involve the following factors, probably in addition to a few others. If you are in contact with someone who hasn’t mentioned any of the following bullets, make sure to bring that to their attention and figure out why.

You will have the opportunity to sit down and discuss keywords with your professional. You should be able to have them research somewhere from 50 to 100 keywords in for your site if you’re looking for decent success.

In more advanced packages you should be able to have them research around 500 keywords for your site. These will be sprinkled throughout your site, boosting relevance among queries within your niche.

Strategy Discussion
When you narrow down your search and find a professional, you’ll sit down with them to discuss your strategy. This will be the time to determine if the person knows what they’re talking about.

When you attend this meeting (probably via Skype) have your price points in mind, and have an understanding of what to expect. Express clear goals and ask how this person plans to achieve those goals, specifically.

This is your website, your money, and your time. If the person you hire doesn’t seem like they can cut it, then you don’t need to give them the chance. A poor optimization can actually harm your traffic and require significant repair.

Think of hiring an SEO professional like hiring a private contractor. You can’t say for sure how much the service will cost until you get an assessment of the work to be done.

Cost Specifics
For an article about the cost of SEO services, this article has given very few numbers so far! That’s because the cost of your services is all relevant to the factors listed above. That being said, there is some data on general SEO pricing.

In terms of percentages, we have data on how search engine optimization costs are broken down. The data tells us that 10 percent of services fall under the $650 mark, twenty-seven percent end up between $750 and $1000, twenty-nine percent between $1,000 and $2,500, twenty percent between $2,500 and $5,000, and fifteen percent between $5,000 and $10,000.

Many small businesses are the ones that are falling below that $500 mark. Beyond that point, SEO can move up in price depending on the complexity, goals, and current state of a website.

We did mention that some services can reach up higher than $10,000. Those services are the ones given by SEO gurus for Fortune 500 companies.

Make Sure You Understand the Services
With costs sometimes reaching over $10,000, you want to be sure that you understand what you’re paying for. It would be easy to confuse a client with a lot of jargon and technical info about Google’s algorithm, so make sure that you get what you’re paying for.

Have your professional lay out an itemized list of their services, what they do, and what they cost. Have a discussion with them and make sure you agree on all of the terms of your business relationship.

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