SEO Prices

This is a topic that I have researched myself for obvious reasons and one that I find very interesting and confusing at the same time. The reason that I find it so interesting is because there’s such a wide variety of prices represented in the SEO field.  There are local companies that charge rates that I think are a little high, others that I believe charge far too little and then large, national companies that charge rates that would seem like highway robbery.

Google the term SEO prices and you will likely come up with websites from SEO companies located around the globe and prices that span a wide range.  From as low as $50 per month to over $10,000 per month for monthly rates.  Many individual SEO professionals however charge by the hour, anywhere from $50 per hour to $1000 per hour and it may be difficult to tell what the difference between the services and service providers is.  Clearly something is wrong with this picture!

Let’s compare…

SEO is still a fairly young industry and therefore doesn’t have a long track record. When you go to a local auto repair facility and have your car fixed, you expect to pay between $75 and $100 per hour. It’s the going rate for that type of service.  It’s unlikely that you will find a mechanic that charges $10 per hour and unlikely you will find one that charges $1500 per hour.

There are a few industries that have a wide range of prices, like the SEO business.  One of them is hairstylists.  You can drop by a local hair salon chain and get a haircut for under $20 or you can find an exclusive salon that charges $400.  It’s seemingly the same thing that you’re getting at both businesses, so how can one charge 20x more than another?

So why is the SEO price range so wide?

Three words come to mind when I think of SEO prices:  Expertise, Value & Exclusivity.

Expertise: How long has the SEO consultant been in the business?  It takes a year or two of trying, testing, failing, testing, failing and trying some more to truly understand the ins and outs of SEO.  An “expert” in the field may not have formal education, but they will have spent time to build their knowledge.  They will spend time everyday reading and keeping up on the trends in SEO and they’re highly adaptable.  There are a few different “certifications” for the SEO industry, but not one that stands out like  most other industries have, so beware of someone claiming to have a certification.  For $89 an SEO can get a book, read it, write a test and get the “certification,” however it’s value is questionable.  Real life experience is far better.

Value:  This is something that is hard to put a number on, but there’s something to be said for the value that an SEO can bring to a project.  For example, imagine an SEO is contacted by a fortune 500 company for SEO services.  The value that he/she may bring to helping them with their SEO could easily generate millions of dollars in extra revenue for the company.  It’s highly unlikely that this type of work is going to be done for $500!

Exclusivity:  Along with value, there are some SEO experts that have built a name for themselves, they have a proven track record of success and therefore are asking a lot of money for their help.  It wouldn’t be out of the question to pay $500 or more per hour for their services, but on the other hand, this is money well spent if you can afford it.

A word about price

Just like everything in life, there are low priced items and high priced items and they aren’t the same.  Watch out for SEO services that are priced very, very low.  It may be tempting to jump on board with a low price, but watch out; You might be doing more harm than good.  Often low priced SEO services are also attached to people who are using old methods and they believe there are magic tricks they can do to get your great search engine rankings overnight.  Truthfully, they can’t so don’t buy their line.  They most likely can’t get your website into the #1 position in a week or two, although it might be possible.  Just watch out for a deal that is too good to be true.

A good quality, reputable SEO knows their value and will charge accordingly.


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