How much does SEO cost for a small business? The right answer is… IT DEPENDS.
The reason the answer depends is because every business is different and there are a variety of factors to consider for each business type and location.
Not only do you have to consider the business or customer looking for SEO services, you also have to consider the agency, freelancer, or company that is doing the SEO work. Like any other industry supply, demand, and reputation will affect the cost of SEO.
How much does SEO cost for Small Business? Here is what we know.
Listed below are prices we found on average and across the web, including our own starting prices.
- According to Backlinko the average monthly SEO costs $497.
- WebFX says monthly SEO cost is $750 to $2000 per month.
- Manta found monthly service ranged from $250 to $3000.
- According to Boostability the cost for monthly local SEO starts at $250.
- LocalRanking asked 10 agencies their pricing starting at $400 per month.
- Higher Visibility advises that SEO should not be a flat rate.
- Ahrefs found that $501 to $1,000 per month is the most popular.
- Search Engine Journal shows those paying $500+ a month are happy.
- The Local Marketer offers Local SEO for $499 a month for 1 location.
What Factors Determine SEO cost for SMBs?
There are a lot factors that go into SEO for Small Business pricing. Unfortunately, there isn’t enough room here to consider them all, however, let’s try and summarize them into two categories.
Below are two categories of factors that determine what the cost might be for SEO services. One column represents the factors of the customer or business. And the second column represents the factors of the SEO service and what it may include.
Here are a list of factors to consider when pricing SEO services for a Small Business based on the industry and type of business.
- Type of business
Here are a list of factors to consider when pricing SEO service cost for what might be included within the SEO service.
- Code optimization
- Speed improvements
- HTML errors
- Citation building
- Guest posting
- PR campaigns
- Blog writing
- Copy rewriting
- Keyword research
- On Page SEO
- Internal linking
These factors help determine what will be involved in an SEO campaign and how much it will cost. For example, an SEO service for a pizza restaurant in Manhattan, New York will always cost more than an SEO service for a pizza restaurant in rural Ashland, Nebraska.
Why would SEO for the Manhattan Pizza restaurant cost more? For several reasons.
- Competition: There are dozens of pizza restaurants in Manhattan.
- Demand: Hundreds of thousands of people in just a square mile.
- Audience: Tourists versus locals.
As an example our local SEO services start at $499 a month. That service would work very well for the rural Nebraska Pizza Restaurant. However, that would not work for a New York City Pizza Restaurant. The cost for SEO services would likely be 2-3 times higher in order for it to be effective.
Why Cheap SEO is Bad for Small Business
Why can’t a small business just hire someone from Fiverr? There is NOTHING WRONG with hiring an SEO from Fiverr. Before doing so, consider that cheap SEO can be bad for business. How?
Cheap SEO services generally (not always) involve what Google considers link spam that violate their guidelines. Those links can result in your website being removed from Google’s index, making it impossible for someone to find your small business using Google search.
Cheap SEO from providers on Fiverr cannot consider all the factors talked about. They give you a price based on almost no knowledge of your business. This is why it is important to communicate with your SEO provider and ask for specifics of what is included in an SEO campaign.
The the screenshot below, the service is $175 for a full SEO campaign for your website. They mention off-page strategy, and backlink analysis. Make sure you understand what that means and is this a one-time or recurring service.
SEO campaigns, in most cases, are not a one-time occurrence. At a cost of only $175 for Premium SEO Service, this should raise a red flag and consider the following questions:
- What does the SEO service include?
- Will the SEO campaign be effective?
- Can this negatively impact my website?
The best alternative to cheap SEO or no SEO is DIY SEO.
Why Do-It-Yourself SEO is a Game Changer
When marketing budgets constrain small business SEO, the answer should not be to pause SEO. The answer is DIY SEO!
Using tools like our Local SEO Checklist, a small business can conduct SEO work on their own website each month and improve their rankings for lots of keywords. This will bring in more web and foot traffic to the business. This will result in more revenue and a bigger marketing budget for the future.
Why DIY SEO is a game changer is because there are so many local small businesses who cannot afford even $500 a month for SEO services. And in order for them to stand out online, they’ll need to DIY their SEO. At least for a little while.
Once they see success even a little SEO work can bring to the business, and as revenue increases. They will see the value that an agency or freelancer can bring when they can scale the SEO work being done for a reasonable cost.
How much does SEO cost for a Small Business?
What we discovered is that it should cost you a minimum of about $500 to yield the best results and most satisfaction. On average B2B companies assign 7.8% of revenue to marketing and B2C companies assign the highest amount at 15.1% of total revenue.
Consider that number includes a monthly minimum of $500 for SEO. Use this information to inform your online local marketing, especially since 53% of website traffic comes from organic search.
If you have questions about SEO cost for Small Business, please contact us.