How Much Should You Spend on SEO?

Search engine optimization, more commonly shortened to SEO, has become a “must-have” item for businesses of all sizes. From the start-up solo enterprise to the Fortune 500 corporation, all organizations know they should have SEO as a part of a robust marketing plan. But how much should you expect to budget for SEO? It’s a topic that needs to be explored.

Understanding Modern SEO

SEO took root when search engine usage started to rev up. As more people began to use search engines — notably Google — to find what they wanted online, the search engines needed a way to determine how much weight each website had. It was a daunting task. Google developers finally settled on algorithms that helped the search engine determine which web pages were relevant and which were less essential.

At first, SEO was mainly determined by keywords. If a webpage had enough keywords, it rose to the top of the search engine results. This led to the problem of keyword-stuffing — webpages were clogged with keywords, but they were not much use to readers. SEO developers combatted this phase by adding ever-more-intricate algorithmic tweaks, leading to the modern SEO landscape.

Today, SEO is much more than having essential keywords on a page. Comprehensive SEO takes into consideration all elements of the algorithmic nuances of the search engines while achieving high readability for viewers. This makes it much harder for companies to “go it alone” when it comes to their SEO efforts.

Factors That Go Into SEO Budgeting

Knowing these facts about SEO and how complex the concept is in the contemporary Internet setting, you need to budget for your SEO pragmatically. Keep the following considerations in mind:

  • How aggressive do you want to be? If your sales are already booming, you’ll want to keep them strong by at least employing a basic SEO plan. Yet if your sales are falling behind, you need to give them an immediate boost. Being aggressive in a competitive marketplace involves having a much stronger SEO plan than other businesses in your sector.
  • How much can you afford to spend? This question isn’t hypothetical. You honestly need to look at your budget and figure out what you can reasonably afford to spend. Don’t forget that by working with an SEO marketing company with a proven track record, you can expect to recoup your SEO investment dollars. You’re basically spending money now that you expect to get back — with “interest” — later.
  • What are you currently doing in-house? Are you handling some of your SEO in-house? This may play into how much you’ll need to spend on an SEO campaign. Having an in-house SEO team may mean you need to spend less. On the other hand, you need to be certain your SEO team is up-to-date on all their SEO practices.

At this point, you have a better idea of paying for SEO from your company’s standpoint. Now, we’ll consider the elements of various SEO packages.

Which SEO Items Do You Want and Need?

Most SEO marketing companies have packages or offer a la carte SEO items. Below are some of the SEO techniques you can expect to pay for:

  • Keyphrase research, analysis, and optimization.
  • Web server analysis and reporting.
  • Meta tag and description imputation.
  • Social media setup, management, and optimization.
  • Website development, including sitemap creation.
  • Web traffic data collection, analysis, and reporting.
  • Copywriting and social media writing.

These are just snippets of what you can purchase as part of an all-inclusive SEO package. They also illustrate that SEO is an ongoing process rather than a one-and-done deal, which also influences the overall cost of your SEO.

Final Thoughts on Paying for SEO

You control your purse strings, so you control your SEO budget. At the same time, it’s not a smart move to be pennywise and pound foolish, as the saying goes. Your company deserves the benefits of SEO so you can remain relevant in an ever-changing environment. Take the time to investigate potential SEO marketing partners and choose the one you feel can help you rapidly move your business forward.

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