Affordable SEO

If you’ve just Googled ‘affordable SEO’ there’s a good chance you know you need it but are concerned about what you are going to get for your money.

Search engine optimisation can seem like a bit of a dark art – can you find an affordable SEO agency that will be effective?

Everyone is talking about it, if you have a website, there’s a good chance you receive several emails per day saying you need to improve it and yet the truth is that no one other than Google knows exactly how it all works.

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Can SEO be affordable?

So is ‘affordable’ really the right word to use in regard to SEO?

Depending on the size of your business, you’ll either have a large budget or a small one.

Whatever’s in the pot, you know you need to invest it in advertising your business.

Google defines affordability as ‘the ability to be afforded; inexpensiveness’ – so is SEO inexpensive?

The answer is no.

SEO is not inexpensive, but you should not look at it as an expense – it’s an investment that you should get a return on.

The type of return you’ll get is proportional to the amount you invest, and that’s why it’s so important to get the right SEO agency to do the job.

Let’s look at the most basic types of SEO and their affordability.

First: Cost-effective Technical SEO.

SEO can be affordable
In a nutshell, this is about making sure your website is ready to invest in SEO.

Technical SEO is about optimising the technical side of your site; the code, scripts, how fast it loads and a whole range of other complicated stuff that ensures your site is good enough to rank.

If you have a slow website on cheap hosting with a high bounce rate it’s going to make getting a return on investing in other types of SEO much more difficult.

Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.

Abraham Lincoln.

Exactly what he said.

If your site is not up to the job, don’t bother.

Luckily, technical SEO is objective.

We can audit your site and show you a report about exactly what needs fixing and how much it will cost.

You will then be able to see the results for yourselves – there’s nothing subjective about technical SEO.

Get a free website audit here

Second: Spread the cost of On-page SEO.

Once your site is ready, on-page SEO is the process of going through all of your content and optimising it.

This means choosing focus keywords for the pages, looking at the text to make sure it contains the keywords, site structure, internal and external linking, URL structures and so on.

There is a lot to this stage, and it’s complicated, but THIS is the stuff that will get your content ranking in the search engines.

So is on-page SEO affordable?

Yes. It doesn’t have to be done in one-hit – you can spread it out over time and, done properly, you will start to see a return.

If you’d like to look at an affordable month-by-month plan for your on-page SEO, get in touch.

Third: Investing in Off-page SEO.

So your site is fast, your content is optimised but you are still ranking outside the top ten for some of your niche keywords.

Off-page SEO is probably the least inexpensive of all the main types of SEO, but it’s the most important.

You need to promote your content.

This means backlinks, mentions, tweets and follows. But most importantly, acquiring backlinks.

These are an entire post in themselves, but backlinks count as a ‘vote’ for your website from another website.

However, it’s not as simple as that.

Bad backlinks can harm your rankings, too many backlinks too fast can also be a bad thing and an unnatural backlink profile (i.e you’ve spent loads of money buying them all over the place) will also land you in trouble with Google.

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The above are the basics.

There’s a shed-load more to SEO that the three stages listed above, but these three are where you should start.

We offer affordable SEO packages for small business that take these three stages and wrap them up into a monthly retained project.

This can be made even more affordable simply by spreading out the work over a longer period of time – you don’t have to do everything now!

Get your SEO started with a FREE site audit

So what makes SEO affordable or not?

Is SEO Affordable?
If you are looking for more affordable SEO services, the first place to start is to look at your own business.

The amount of money that you will need to invest in SEO is as much about your product or service than about what the SEO agency wants to charge you.

SEO becomes more affordable if:
  • You sell a high-ticket-price product or service with a good profit margin
  • If you are in a niche with a unique product
  • You do something that few others do
  • One sale generally results in repeat business
  • Your keywords are not overly competitive
SEO can become less affordable if:
  • You are selling a generic me-too product or service
  • You compete solely on price
  • Your customers buy once then never come back
  • The target keywords are very competitive.
Two real-world examples.

Let’s say you sell greeting cards.

You make a GP of £1.50 per sale.

The keywords you are targetting are hugely competitive.

In order to surface in the search, you are going to have to invest heavily in both on-page SEO, content production, off-page SEO and potentially PPC (effectively buying sales).

Because you only make £1.50 per sale, and your monthly SEO costs £650 (for example), you are going to need to get around 450 sales JUST TO COVER YOUR SEO INVESTMENT.

As the SERPs are highly competitive, it’s going to take you at least six months to surface, so that’s £3,900 investment before you even start to appear.

Throw in conversion rates and other stuff and suddenly the numbers start to look like you’re wasting the best part of £4,000 and need over 2,500 MORE sales than you get already to cover this off.

Is that worth it?

The answer is both yes and no.

In the here and now, you may not be able to afford it, so in this example, SEO is not affordable.

However, in six months you may be ranking top three for some important keywords and generating a lot of visits to your site and getting the sales – this makes it more affordable, but only if you look at it as an investment to start with.

And the opposite?

If your market is niche, your product or service has a great profit margin and your customers keep coming back for more, SEO is far more likely to be something that is affordable as the numbers will be a lot lower.

You get the idea.

Your SEO company should tell you this.

If they don’t, they just want your money and don’t really care about you or what you are looking to achieve.

This tends to be true of online-only SEO agencies with unbelievably cheap prices…

Avoid cheap SEO packages like the PLAGUE.

If you are on a tight budget it can be tempting to go for cheap SEO.

There are 1000s of websites out there offering full-service SEO for a few pounds a month.

WASTE OF MONEY.

You simply can’t do SEO on a shoestring budget – all this will ever be is cost – you’ll never get a return.

This actually means that cheap SEO companies will effectively cost you more than an experienced and less inexpensive SEO agency.

The cheap SEO solutions that these online-only companies provide are also likely to do you more harm than good.

When an SEO is charging you peanuts, they are going to cut corners.

 

Save SEO Budget

 

Cowboys (and girls).

This might mean outsourcing the SEO offshore, using blackhat (bad) SEO techniques and a whole range of other cowboy-style activities.

Remember: Bad SEO has to be undone.

If you decide to go cheap and have a spammy company do your SEO, it can really hurt you in the long-term.

If your site falls foul of Google (et al) for whatever reason, it can take months of work for a decent SEO agency to repair the damage.

So a cheap-fix in the short term could end up costing you more in the long run.

So, how can you make SEO more affordable?

Most SEO service providers will offer packaged solutions for you.

This means you pay them £XXX per month and in return, they do A, B and C per month for you.

This is the norm for most small businesses – you look at the monthly costs and then elect for a ‘Bronze’, ‘Silver’ or ‘Gold’ type of package.

While these are great (we offer them too), there is another way to make SEO more affordable, and that’s by using time.

You don’t have to do everything at once.

Your website is not a brochure with a print deadline, it’s an ever-evolving, dynamic marketing platform where you can do things in stages over time.

Let’s say we’ve just run an audit on your site and you’ve got a score of 10/100.

Ouch.

The site’s only six months old and it turns out the agency you spent £1000s with hasn’t really done a great job.

The best SEO companies are going to tell you this needs to be fixed before they take any money off you for on- and off-page SEO.

And they are right – you know that but you spend loads on the site, feel like you’ve had your fingers burned and no longer trust these ‘digital people’ that have already let you down once already!

Get started today

Spread the cost of SEO overtime to make it more affordable.

So what do you do if you want (or really need) something that you can’t really afford right this minute?

You spread the costs.

If your website’s technical SEO is poor, you need to get it fixed, but you can do this over a period of time (unless it’s mission-critical).

Most SEOs agree that anything – that’s ANYTHING – you do SEO-wise needs at least three months to show a benefit.

So work out what you can afford to invest on a monthly basis and find a local SEO agency that will work with you on that basis – an agreed amount of work to a fixed cost spread over X months.

Whilst fixed-price SEO packages give you some idea of what the costs may be, it’s very unlikely that you and your unique requirements will fit into that pigeon-hole.

This is one of the main reasons why we only offer SEO packages as a starting point.

SEO absolutely HAS to start with a conversation about you, your business and what you want to achieve.

Seemingly affordable self-serve SEO packages really don’t cut it (we know, we’ve done our research), and they will leave you wondering what you spent your money on.

Bespoke SEO packages, tailored to your own specific needs and ran at your pace, not the agencies, will get you results and leave you understanding EXACTLY where your money went and what you got for it.

This is not a one-night-stand, it’s a relationship.

And good, honest, experienced SEO agencies know this.

If they know they can help you, an experienced SEO company will discuss budgets and affordability with you BEFORE they take your money.

They know the most important thing:

If they can demonstrate that what they do make a positive change to your business, you’ll want them to do more of it.

If they like you, your product or service and know they can help, they’ll be willing to be more creative with what they charge to get you onboard and keep you.

You could always do it yourself…

There is so much information about SEO out there on the internet, if you have enough time, you could learn how to do this yourself.

Brian Dean is one of the most well-known people in SEO tips and how-tos.

One way to make SEO more affordable could be to outsource the stuff that you can’t or don’t want to do and work with your SEO team to plan through the bits that you can do yourself.

You could write the copy and do the on-page SEO for example, leaving the technical and off-page to your agency.

This type of approach can often work well, but only if you know what you are doing – if you are spending money with an agency, but then don’t do your bit (usually as you are too busy) then this can have a detrimental effect on your whole SEO campaign.

Let’s talk about how we can help you

So, what next?

We know Search engine optimisation is a bit of a minefield.

With so many agencies and freelance SEOs out there, it can seem almost impossible to choose an affordable SEO agency that will get you results.

Our advice is:

  • Phone, rather than email a few companies that you’ve found who feels right for you
  • See if you talk to someone who’ll be doing the work or if you get a salesperson
  • Ask a lot of questions – if you get half-baked responses or empty promises – no SEO can guarantee anything on the first call
  • If you are talking to local SEO agencies, invest a little of your time in going to see them in person – their premises and team will tell you a lot about them
  • Ask for references or other clients that will vouch for what the agency does
Expectations.

SEO is NOT a magic bullet.

It takes time and budget to get results, but you can do this affordably over time.

The aim of all SEO is positive results, so remember that getting the rankings of your site up from 50-something to 20-something in the search results is a positive change.

Ok, so you’re not #1 yet, but your SEO agency is getting you there.

If you’d like a no-nonsense chat about your SEO, what you want to achieve, and how to make it affordable, call us on 01295 266644 and speak to Charlotte or Dave.

 

We can have a quick run through with you on the phone about how we can best help you.

To conclude.

Like any form of advertising (and SEO is advertising), it does come down to whether you can afford not to do SEO.

Is there any business out there that doesn’t want more leads and potential customers?

Affordability is defined as something that is inexpensive.

SEO done properly will make you money, so it’s even less than inexpensive.

What’s more, when you get your sites content ranking for converting keywords, Google just keeps giving.

That blog post you spent £500 on six months ago will deliver you lead after lead – there’s no other form of advertising that can deliver as SEO does.

Call us, drop us an email or connect on LinkedIn – an initial call will cost you nothing and we’ll be upfront about whether we think we can help you.

Do you need help with SEO?

If you're looking to start with SEO and website optimisation call us on 01295 266644 or complete the form and we'll get in touch.
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