How much money does SEO cost? Just as importantly is the question of how much SHOULD it cost? Depending on a number of factors, the answer will be very different for whoever asks it. Knowing what kind of budget to assign for your website’s SEO requires knowing what SEO is, and determining what you want it to do for you. There are a number of varied factors that will come into play when you start to lay out what your SEO budget should be. One of the major factors is the competition for the keywords that are relevant to your website. If the services or the products that you are selling belong to a niche or broad market that is highly competitive then the efforts required to get good online visibility will be relatively higher – and the SEO budget for such websites will be higher as well. Competition often drives cost.
Your SEO budget should be flexible. At times, you may have to take some additional measures to increase the traffic level such as ads for paid traffic. There may also be times when you will need or want to invest in getting the right type of organic traffic. If you don’t do your own SEO, you have to figure out what you need an SEO firm to do the most when you hire them.
Track your SEO for six to twelve weeks before changing course. The last thing you want to do is invest the time and money into a program only to jump ship before you see the results appearing that indicate you were on the right track. If you are launching a new website, the initial expenses for SEO will almost assuredly be pricier than would be seen for an existing site. Unfortunately, many webmasters who spend a lot of money on their website design fail to set aside the right budget for their website’s SEO. It’s hard to put a figure for the SEO both in terms of $$ or in terms of % of the over all cost of your website development. It comes down to knowing all the expenses before you start and using some common sense to make a realistic budget.
The size of your website will be a factor in what your SEO budget should be. If you have a 5 page website then setting aside 20% of the cost of the website will probably not meet your SEO needs effectively. If you run a massive shopping cart then 20% of the overall cost of your website will likely be a more than adequate budget. There are plenty of gurus and half-baked guys calling them self pros who learned SEO from a $19.95 ezine that will try to fleece – and even big companies fall to these hucksters and pretenders, but you know in your own mind what is real and fake and what is viable to meet your needs and insufficient.
Factor in the amount of competition that you need to fight and the earning potential. Having a generous budget for your SEO can help, but only if you spend it wisely and on the right SEO professionals who know what they are doing and can provide real results. Stay away from guys who are SEO “pros” by day and wannabe rock star bass players at night. If you identify the right SEO service provider everything will fall into place.