When it comes to making decisions, business owners will frequently look for the low cost solutions in order to save money in the short term. This same logic is often applied when choosing SEO - opting for the cheapest solution, paying the lowest hourly rate possible, for the least number of hours. All in the name of saving money.
It is not logical to choose an SEO solution simply with cost in mind. Likewise, the comparison of SEO services on a price-per-hour basis doesn’t make good business sense. Each market sector and the businesses within them are unique, with different goals, objectives and ideals. When it comes to Search Engine Optimisation, there really is no one size fits all solution.
Before an SEO consultant can begin to bring about optimum search traffic to your site, they will need to gain an understanding of your business and its objectives. Only once they have assessed opportunities and risks, analysed your market and competition, and reviewed your current marketing activities, can they really start to develop an effective SEO strategy that’s suitable for your business.
Each business is unique – a marketing strategy that works well for one company will not necessarily achieve the same kind of results for another. It is for this reason that an effective SEO provider will seldom offer a solution at a fixed-price. They will most likely quote for their work based on the length of time expected to optimise your site and implement your exclusive SEO strategy, as well as the level of knowledge and experience that they will be bringing to your project.
The price of SEO is hugely varied between service providers. Some companies will offer quotes with little knowledge of your business, making large claims and promises that are unlikely to be fulfilled. Whereas others will only quote you an estimate after a period of trial runs, pilot projects or detailed analysis, taking a more cautious approach.
An SEO expert will likely require some initial information from your business in order to make an assessment. This may include details of your current organic search traffic, sales data and Return on Investment. Although this may come at an additional cost, the preliminary efforts will assist in identifying the most profitable keywords and discovering their conversion potential. Thus making consequent SEO work more effective and profitable for business.
Some Search Engine Optimisation providers offer off-the-shelf packages priced at a fixed rate, which guarantee a set list of activities. As you’ve probably gathered already, these “strategies” are extremely unlikely to provide an effective solution for your business. These standardised procedures are not a sustainable way to achieve long term results.
There’s also the web designers, or Content Management System providers, who will throw in an SEO package at a discounted rate, or even at no extra cost. Although this may sound like a great deal to a business owner, these cheap fixes are risky. Cost should not be positioned as a more important factor than the actual potential return on investments and revenue.
At the other end of the spectrum, are the companies who provide a complete and unique custom solution for your business, offering a premium service from specialists with years of experience, on hand to personally manage your project. If you require an adaptive and durable business SEO strategy, it is best advised to pay less attention to the costs of services offered, and place greater emphasis on the potential returns you’ll gain from it. Choosing the cheap option may bring regrets later on as you watch your search rankings drop and your competition gain prominence.
A lot of clients work with a limited budget, and simply expect SEO to be fixed and rankings achieved. There’s a lot more to it than this. For SEO that’s sustainable, more is required than the odd tweaking of content and building of backlinks.
A good SEO provider will pass on knowledge to their clients and share details of the on-going project. This understanding of the SEO strategy will help your business adjust its online processes, in order to fit in with the goals of the strategy and adapt accordingly for increased search traffic.
Many business owners think of SEO as nothing more than building links to their site, without contemplating where these are coming from. They’ll request a quote for a set number of links a month and base their decision on the company who offers the cheapest cost per link.
Not all links provide value to an SEO strategy, with some causing a negative effect. For instance, low quality blogs and directories that are generally easy to gain links from, will hold no real value or relevance to your site. Whereas a few links gained from highly relevant and authoritative sites will prove valuable in achieving good search rankings.
For an effective SEO solution, business owners must look further than simply gaining as many links as possible.
Modern SEO strategies cannot afford to remain firmly fixed. Google is constantly updating and changing, with over 600 updates released in 2013 alone. It is therefore required that SEO projects are adaptable, well-maintained and expandable in order to achieve effective results in the ever-changing search environment. Although SEO is hard to understand for some business owners, you must take into account that it can be easy to get left behind your competition if you keep switching between short-term solutions, without the bigger picture in mind.
Don’t get tempted into choosing a provider simply because of promises and guarantees of page 1 rankings, which they have no real control of.
The most powerful way to achieve long term SEO advantages, is by placing an emphasis on the creation of high quality and focused content, that appeals to your target market and grabs their attention. It’s with superior content that you can really stand apart from your competitors. Great content will do the work for you – if it is worthy of being linked to, your audience will help it gain exposure online through social media. This will bring quality and highly relevant traffic to your site.
Effective SEO providers should be able to deliver a hybrid marketing service that covers many disciplines and areas of expertise. This is something that comes with a lot of practice and first-hand experience.
A modern SEO specialist should have knowledge in aspects such as some coding, design, conversion optimisation, user interfaces, buyer psychology, sales and internet technology. In addition, they should remain adaptable and up to date on the constant changes to Google and the search environment.
SEO techniques become rapidly outdated, losing effectiveness and are often considered as spam to search engines. A versatile and adaptable expert could prove highly effective for business and profits. Someone who can ensure your business performs against the associated risks is far more valuable than a low-cost provider who could end up damaging your online visibility, reputation and ultimately, traffic, conversions and profit.