#1 Guide to Cost of SEO Services For Business in 2022

Published on
December 20, 2022
min read
#1 Guide to Cost of SEO Services For Business in 2022
Get a clear picture of your business's cost of SEO in 2022. Learn pricing models, standard packages, ROI & answers to your questions & risks

So how much exactly?

We know that business owners want a clear and straightforward response. You want a simple number to fit into your monthly or yearly budget.

In reality, the price of SEO might differ significantly based on the SEO services you require or desire. The volume of content needed, expectations, business growth estimates, and the variety of necessary services are just a few of the numerous variables that affect the price of an SEO package.

Given the variety of campaigns, most SEO projects range in price from $400 to $10,000, depending on the degree of service.

Depending on the project's scope, the average monthly cost of SEO projects in 2022 will range from $1500 to $5000.

Hourly consultants are priced between $100 and $300 per hour, and one-time projects range from $5,000 to $30,000.

[fs-toc-omit]Is SEO really expensive?

If you're tempted to spend money on paid search rather than SEO, remember that it gets more expensive the more you spend. Additionally, not all outcomes are profitable.

Low-quality SEO services support their work by spending money on search marketing or SEM, sometimes known as sponsored search traffic.

It costs money to get good SEO. You are paying professionals for their knowledge and time. Let's look at some factors contributing to SEO's high cost and explain why you should consider reducing your spending.

SEO services pricing in comparision to TV AD costs

When picking an SEO agency, provider experience is a crucial consideration.

As previously stated, you'll receive higher-quality services if you spend more. Experienced SEO firms may charge more because they produce results. Selecting a service provider with expertise in your business is another smart move.

We managed to boost KS Renovation's non-branded organic traffic by 180% in a year. We worked on SEO, on-site content, site migration, and partnerships with excellent content to achieve this result.

KS Renovation increased their organic traffic in 1.8 times in 2 months with help of Blue Bee Web Digital Marketing

Don't trust your SEO to an unprofessional firm that could harm your rankings and subject you to Google penalties. It pays off to work with professionals who are knowledgeable in their field.

When we talk about the cost of SEO services and the agency's experience, we can not forget the impressive profits that will get your business.

Many companies get 3, 4, and sometimes 10 times more profit after improving their websites and investing in SEO optimization of their sites.

seo costs vs radio advertising

What is the reasonable SEO cost for you?

The size of your organization and the scope of the services you need will determine how much you have to spend on SEO.

Although SEO prices vary from agency to agency, it's crucial to keep in mind that, concerning SEO services, you frequently get what you pay for.

Don't sacrifice quality when selecting an SEO provider in favor of "cheap" SEO services. Instead, pick a reputable SEO company that provides high-quality SEO services.

Regular SEO consultation with a market leader will cost more than an unproven organization, similar to many other professional services sectors.

SEO Pricing: How Much Does SEO Cost? [Industry Research]
Source ahrefs

Your ultimate objectives should dictate the precise amount you should pay for SEO services.

The SEO effort's scope will increase with your website's size. This suggests that the cost of SEO services should increase.

Additionally, it's crucial to remember that SEO is a continuing strategy.

Consider a monthly SEO package that will maintain your site current and enable it to consistently rank at the top of search results rather than investing in one-time SEO tactics.

Google CTR
Google ctr report by sistrix

Is there a standard for SEO prices in 2022?

Unfortunately, there is no standard in the industry for typical SEO costs.

This implies that each business can advertise that it offers SEO services and set its prices. Ultimately, it's up to the client to decide what a reasonable SEO cost is, especially if there is a continuing cost for monthly SEO programs.

This reality only emphasizes how crucial it is to understand what you receive for your money spent on content marketing (digital marketing). In this manner, you can evaluate the suitability of your investment based on the predicted rate of return. However, the overall long-term value of the SEO services offered should ultimately guide your choice.

Knowing how to determine the cost of SEO is crucial, given the enormous variety of opportunities it offers.

To make your life easier, we detail all the key points of SEO work based on extensive personal experience.

[fs-toc-omit]Important SEO facts

  • Average SEO costs are $100 - $250 an hour for US SEO agencies
  • SEO costs often range from $2,500 - $10,000 per month for US agencies
  • The average SEO plan costs $2819 per month (per Ahrefs)
  • Overseas SEO companies may charge $10 - $50 an hour
  • Beware of SEO's guaranteeing results. it may be a scam
  • Template SEO packages are becoming less popular
  • Custom SEO strategies are needed for the best results
  • Watch hidden costs for link building
  • SEO pricing is typically lower for local campaigns
  • SEO firms may have additional content creation fees

What is included in your SEO services?

Since there are so many unique factors to consider, SEO is a significant task. Think again if you believe it's only about putting some keywords around. Although small businesses don't need to spend a fortune on SEO, it is still necessary to invest time and money to ensure that all areas of the strategy are addressed.

main SEO components

Background research

Thinking about who your target audience is is the first part of your SEO strategy. Your content should be relevant, valuable to your audience, and easily accessible to new visitors.

To find out your audience, you can start by gathering feedback. This will help you find out exactly what users want from your site. You should also do industry research to identify current trends and events.

A lot of research can be done on your own, but it will be time-consuming for a small business; SEO professionals can help with this and other elements of search engine optimization.

Keyword and competitor research

Most of the time in SEO work is devoted to keyword research. It's essential that your site has the right keywords-otherwise, it won't show up in Google searches, and you'll miss out on valuable traffic from potential customers.

Keyword research is thinking about how your customer might search for your business. Also, identify your direct competitors and check what keywords drive traffic to their sites.

You have 2 options for doing this work. Option 1 is to use Google's keyword planner. It allows you to do the work for free, but it is superficial and not very effective. Option 2 - use paid tools such as Ahrefs and Semrush to do the job more fully and in-depth.

Fees for tools can quickly increase, so hiring a SaaS SEO agency is better to take care of all in one package.

Site architecture optimization

The next stage of Search Engine Optimization is to use all the research results to optimize your site's structure.

Your site should be SEO-friendly. It's essential to provide visitors with a great user experience - no missing links or slow-loading images.

If you have a background in coding, the good news is that you can handle it yourself. But experience shows that most business owners conclude that they need SEO professionals. An SEO expert tool knows all the tricks, such as minimizing the number of clicks from the home page, using internal links, and URL shortening.

Content production and optimization

To keep your site active and alive - you need lots of high-quality content. With new, unique, and relevant content, you'll be able to satisfy Google's algorithms and secure higher rankings.

You may have great writers or former copywriters on your team. However, overseeing the production and optimization of your content is a full-time job.

In addition to finding new and unique ideas, you need to update and optimize your existing content. This way, your content will contain the latest popular keywords and up-to-date statistics.

An SEO agency specializing in online content marketing will include a content strategy for SaaS in their package.

Link building and Digital PR

Link building is an important step. This is how you get other sites to link to your site, providing referral traffic and letting Google analytics know that your site is worth citing.

If Google links to you, it will 100% give you a higher ranking. This can be achieved with high-quality content, commentary, and reviews from influencers and affiliate links.

SEO costs by pricing model

Check each SEO pricing model's elements carefully before choosing a service, as each agency or SEO consultant will have somewhat different features.

Let's take a look at the three major SEO pricing structures:

Per Hour

You can see the hourly rate charged for SEO work. This option suits freelancers or independent contractors. They offer SEO services to tiny clients. Less often, this type of work is chosen by agencies or companies engaged in Internet marketing.

The average hourly SEO work costs from $100 to $250 per hour.

Payment is based on the number of hours spent working on each project. Be sure to ask the company to see a breakdown of what they did during that time to be sure they gave you a proper check equal to the final job.

And don't forget the downside of hourly-based pricing. While you want to cut as many work hours as possible, your contractor is interested in increasing work hours. The hourly pricing model drastically shifts from quality work to quantity of time spent on a task. It's not about quality anymore; it's just about low and high checks. That's the reason it works only for tiny single projects.

SEO pricing hourly

Per Monthly SEO services

Most SEO and marketing agencies usually provide a fee per month. You agree to a fixed price for the agency's services and that they will do ongoing SEO work on your site.

The average price for a month's worth of SEO work ranges from $2,500 to $10,000 and up.

Small companies that use local SEO can spend about $1,000 per project monthly. Larger, enterprise-level companies can expect to spend millions of dollars per month.

Often, monthly SEO packages include the crucial aspects we mentioned earlier:

  • keyword research
  • competitor research
  • SEO content writing
  • technical audit
  • content marketing audit
  • link building
  • digital PR
  • ongoing SEO and technical consulting
  • reporting and analysis

However, some agencies allow you to make an individual plan with an agreed monthly price.

Monthly SEO services are the best option for small businesses. While business owners cannot spend a pile of cash at 1 time, their businesses need constant work on their brand presence on the web. Considering you are far from 1st position for any of your keywords, there's no guarantee you can get even 1st page rankings in any specific time.

Another advantage of monthly SEO services for businesses is that each month may be the last for the contractor, which forces any SEO agency to do its best to improve its client's search rankings, traffic, and click-through rate.

Per Project-based SEO services

Some SEO agencies may ask for a one-time fee for a specific SEO project. You will need to provide your SEO needs, wants, and goals and then agree on the scope and total cost. This option allows for more fine-tuning of the project.

The average cost of project-based SEO services ranges from $1,000 to $1 million and up.

SEO costs by business size

Local SEO services pricing

Although we mentioned that local SEO efforts would theoretically be less expensive than trying to rank for the same keywords nationwide, the geographical target area is the only factor influencing the price.

Pricing for local SEO is still dependent on the same factors we discussed earlier.

However, Local SEO normally runs from $250 to $3,000 per month.

Small business SEO services pricing

Therefore, we are aware that inexpensive SEO is not risk-free. Although you should always conduct your research and confirm the agency's qualifications, midrange costs are safer. You should budget between $3,000 and $8,000 for each project or month for small business SEO Services and Social Media Optimization.

Small business SEO typically concentrates on resolving issues with an existing website, such as improving site architecture and customizing content. It is appropriate for small websites in markets with little to no competition.

SEO firms will offer a content marketing plan in the more expensive end of this market. They'll update existing content and often develop new content. Additionally, they could provide a digital PR service that involves link creation via outreach and social media amplification.

Small business SEO content usually meets some business goals but won't create interesting long-lasting content. Superior choices consider the broader picture of your company's story if your budget permits.

Medium and enterprise SEO services pricing

Enterprise SEO is a totally different beast. Enterprise SEO requires greater accountability, no matter the size of the site or the company. You may expect an increase in traffic, conversions, and stakeholder input.

You should prepare to invest $30,000 to $1 million or more per month due to the high level of SEO work involved.

It takes more than scaling up small business SEO strategies to manage corporate SEO. Enterprise SEO requires knowledge and insight into the procedures, mindset, and point of view involved. You must pick a business that develops a full-funnel approach and produces long-lasting results.

The enterprise-level full-funnel strategy must include original content, high authority digital PR, commercial solutions, link development, and in-depth site optimization. You may increase the number of organic visitors to your website, but only if you collaborate with an experienced firm.

Does it worth it?

We understand your curiosity. As a result of updates to Google's algorithms and SERPs, there are now even more factors to consider if you want to rank #1. Is it worthwhile?

So to better comprehend the context of searches, Google now takes other elements into account when determining ranking places, such as BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers, in case you care). Your site can get lost in the crowd by adding fresh features like highlighted snippets on the SERPs.

However, if you hire SEO specialists, their duty will be to monitor these developments and make the most of your site's potential in the brave new world. Additionally, Google is getting better at separating spam from high-quality material, so an entirely optimized site will do well.

Given that Google processes more than 5 billion queries daily, it's critical to watch your clients while they hunt for your goods or services online.

53% of site traffic comes from organic searches, and as voice search and AI become more prevalent, additional chances will arise. Additionally, since everyone owns a smartphone, individuals may look up to your company anytime.

Potential clients who use Google or other search engines to find products or services are "actively engaged," which means they are looking for YOU directly. Your traffic chances considerably rise if your website is at the top of the search results.

Did you know that more than 25% of Google users click on the top organic search result?

Being at the top of Google will allow you to receive up to 2,500 free hits per month if a keyword is searched 10,000 times.

Because of this, SEO remains one of the most effective methods for producing lasting effects.

Daily search engine searches

ROI of SEO services

Let's talk about ROI, which is crucial for choosing an SEO budget and gauging success. We have observed the widest gap between client perceptions of cost and value in this industry. If you have any doubts, search for "cheap SEO" or related terms and review the offers.

For the record, you are not familiar with these businesses or the services they provide, but given everything that has been said up to this point, what could they possibly be doing for $100 or $500 per month?

People still purchase affordable packages every day. Frequently because they are unaware of SEO or its specifics, consider yourself an uninformed customer for a moment. Which would you select if someone offered to "rank you" for $100 or $5,000? Given that this service has been available for a while, many people would choose the less expensive option.

After used car sales, whatever industry receives the greatest criticism, let's take a step back and consider this. SEO customers are being pushed low-value deals, leading them to believe that SEO can't possibly work for their company instead of realizing that "cheap" SEO is the real issue.

seo vs ppc sales results

You must evaluate the ROI of SEO and set your budget appropriately to prevent sliding into that cycle yourself. According to a recent analysis, SEO service's return on investment is $2.75 for every dollar invested.

The ROI of SEO is 275 percent.

According to a recent assessment, SEO has a three-year ROI of 748 percent.

The adage "actions speak louder than words" is also accurate when allocating marketing budgets.

As you can see, businesses are getting insane returns on investment from SEO services. We could go on and on about SEO's return on investment and how to calculate it, but, like your plan, the best way to know is to talk with one of our SEO professionals about your objectives.

SEO ROI in the long term

Hiring in House for SEO Vs. Hiring an Agency

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the median annual wage for a skilled copywriter in 2021 was $69,510, or $33.42 per hour.

A Web developer's median annual compensation is $77,200, or $37.12 per hour.

Both would cost you between $5700 and $6500 a month to add to your in-house marketing team, and they most likely lack the necessary expertise to carry out an advanced SEO campaign.

Compared to the expense of hiring internal staff, an agency offering all the services mentioned above and many more for $2,500 to $5,000 per month is a bargain. An agency also won't take time off for illness, ask for leave, or need pay for time spent learning SEO.

Here are three more benefits of employing an agency.

1. SEO Companies Offer Scalability

Every business owner attempting to expand their company knows that hiring an internal team in such situations is significantly more expensive and complicated. The amount of time and workload that employees can handle is constrained.

They will need to hire more team members, increasing your costs if you want them to complete more work.

However, SEO agencies give you access to as few or as many SEO specialists as you need to accelerate the growth of your business. Additionally, when you hire a service, you will agree on a fee and avoid being caught off guard by unforeseen expenses.

2. SEO Firms Offer Creativity

Your internal team frequently interacts with your brand. Team members get stuck in a creative rut as a result of such repetition and routine with the same tasks.

On the other hand, an SEO business provides SEO experts who deal with various clients. This keeps their imaginations active and keeps them informed of developments in the SEO industry.

SEO companies serve as impartial observers who examine your business from a distance. Consequently, SEO businesses continue their innovation when comprehending your organization.

3. Agencies Offer Increased Capabilities

Typically, an SEO company has a skill set that internal staff simply cannot match. This is especially true for midrange and small organizations' internal SEO teams.

Processing information on effective SEO tactics and accessing beta features for a particular technology are a few examples of these skills.

Hiring an SEO agency will provide you access to a solution, for instance, if your company needs a specific link-building strategy that requires data from a technology you cannot pay for.

[fs-toc-omit]Understanding How Your Budget is Being Used

The average hourly wage ranged from $100 to $150, according to the same Ahrefs poll for average monthly retainers. The United States sees a 35% increase in this percentage. Nevertheless, the typical hourly wage is $125.

For $2,500 monthly, you would receive approximately 20 hours of work if an agency charged by the hour (the low end of a good service cost).

Retainer-based billing, rather than hourly charging, is more typical, as mentioned above. Because it combines value for the customer with internal capacity to precisely manage to spend, the retainer pricing model is so well-liked. Let's have a look at the breakdown of the budget for a $2,500/month retainer.

1. Content Research - To analyze the top 5–10 pieces on a specific subject, pinpoint areas that could be improved, and choose a perspective for your material, devote two hours to content research.

2. Content Creation - costs between $300 and $500 per 1,000 words for expertly crafted articles by independent contractors. Although some in-depth material can cost several thousand dollars, we'll stick with "average" fantastic content for this example.

3. Link Prospecting - identifying resources, skyscraper opportunities, broken links, and guest post opportunities requires 3 hours per monthly seo pricing model.

4. Total Current Expense: $930 – $1,130 (depending on the cost of content)

5. Link Outreach – 10 hours per month of outreach link building comes to $1,260.

6. Total Current Expense: $2,190 -$2,390 (depending on cost of content)

Using the $110–$310 per month left over, an agency will typically also pay for analytics setup and tracking, on-page optimization, technical site auditing, and modification, page speed optimization, client reporting, and 2-4 hours per month of client phone time & reporting. Before, the business accounts for overhead or customer acquisition costs.

You may say: "We hire SEOs to provide results quickly." The business community is aware of your point, and some of the most harmful tactics were developed to meet customer demands for efficiency while reducing costs.

Companies looking to save money and hasten the ranking process used tactics including spinning content, automated link building, submission spam, and low-quality guest posting. Most of you should be aware of how that ended by now!

[fs-toc-omit]Other SEO pricing factors?

Beyond the usual price differences across businesses, other variables can affect SEO pricing packages.

Industry. #1 SEO pricing factor

Some industries are more competitive than others because they are more inclined to market online.

Legal professionals, medical facilities, financial institutions, locksmiths, and auto mechanics are among the most expensive terms on Google. Real estate, marketing services, software providers, and home improvement stores are just a few other sectors with pricey and fiercely competitive keywords.

The CPC (cost per click) for some extremely competitive keywords can exceed $1,000! As a result of their ability to use lengthier keyword phrases or additional, less competitive keywords, niche firms typically have an advantage in this area (and prices).

SEO costs vary greatly depending on the number of monthly searches a specific industry receives.

For instance, a firm with thousands of monthly searches for its services will have to spend more on SEO packages. Businesses serving an area with numerous competitors will have to pay more to rank higher.

Geographic location. #2 SEO pricing factor

SEO pricing will be influenced by various factors, including a city's population and the region you are targeting. Even lone factors can make a difference. For instance, Alaska would have greater competition for snow tire services than Florida or Southern California.

Of course, there will be more competition in more densely populated metropolitan regions. Localized SEO packages will be much more expensive in places like New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago than for companies that merely wish to target residents in small adjacent communities.

Scope of work based on your business need. #3 SEO pricing factor

Whether you want to optimize your site for organic search, develop a review profile, create a ton of content, etc., will frequently affect SEO pricing.

This might help you decide which SEO pricing structure is appropriate for your company. For instance, this may be a one-time fee per project if all you need assistance with is setting up Google My Business accounts and optimizing site tags. Monthly services might be a better option if you need to develop a robust blog and wish to rank higher on SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).

Your brand's current scale and awareness. #4 SEO pricing factor

The cost of SEO may also vary based on how well-known and visible your brand is right now. There will be a lot of research if your business is brand-new and you start from zero. However, if your company has been around for a while and already has a robust search presence, you will need to concentrate more on optimization and upkeep.

SEO Skill Set & Expertise. #5 SEO pricing factor

People with genuine experience and comprehensive talents frequently have results that can be verified and can thus command greater fees. Because they consistently produce results, they are busier, more online businesses seek out their SEO services, and their services are more valuable due to the organic traffic they generate.

How to find good providers?

Making the right decision for your company requires understanding what SEO service rates indicate and how they may affect your business. SEO service rates vary widely across the board.

SEO pricing tips

Learn the SEO provider's process

Numerous techniques and strategies go into creating a successful SEO campaign, and SEO is continuously being improved to keep up with search engine algorithm changes. Ensure the SEO business you work with is willing to alter to accommodate the numerous algorithm updates search engines make. Additionally, they ought to approach optimum SEO tactics in a proactive and forward-thinkingly.

Look for customizable SEO packages

Furthermore, caution is critical because every business is distinct and has to be handled accordingly.

Avoid organizations that provide "one size fits all" packages, and be wary of businesses with high, fixed costs for search engine optimization services. Because we know that you have specific requirements, Blue Bee Web provides 3 plans in addition to custom Digital Marketing Services in cases where your requirements fall outside the purview of our typical SEO plans.

Focus on full-service SEO solutions

Businesses now have more significant reason to engage in full-service SEO solutions as SEO broadens to cover additional facets of digital marketing, such as content marketing, conversion analysis, social media optimization, and others.

A full-service SEO solution offers all the components your company requires for its SEO strategy.

An agency may be behind in service offerings or providing subpar monthly SEO services if they don't provide all you want to be covered. Every business should be able to offer you and other prospective customers with SEO service pricing that explains how they operate; if they can't, that's a solid indication that you should look elsewhere for SEO package costs.

[fs-toc-omit]Why do some companies charge only a few hundred dollars a month?

The SEO firms that charge a few hundred dollars a month outsource their job. These campaigns frequently get bad copywriting, low-quality backlinks, and inferior outcomes. WARNING: An inexpensive SEO may harm your website more than good.

How long does it take to get SEO results?

The time it takes to see SEO results depends entirely on your current ranking. It will take longer to reach page 1 if you're on page 50 for your target keywords than if you're already there on page 3. We'll estimate how long it will take to get you where you want to go during our free Website & SEO review.

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