SEO is a term that people in business toss around quite a bit, and it can often feel like an insurmountable, or even intimidating task. With digital businesses becoming more and more common – such as e-commerce, or remote businesses – it makes sense for businesses to have a clear SEO strategy. Unfortunately, it is a changing and fast-paced field, where strategies can quickly fall out of date. This is why many businesses choose to partner with professionals who are better equipped to keep up with current perform SEO strategies.
This approach might not be in the cards for businesses working with a limited budget. Small businesses especially may wish to start doing or Perform SEO, but can’t afford one of the SEO packages or services that other businesses rely on.
What is the cost of SEO?
There are many different considerations when it comes to pricing SEO. For starters, are you doing it all in-house? Or are you partnering with an SEO company? Most professional SEO partners use a price per hour model to charge for their services. This is generally so as to offer flexibility for the customer, but the trouble with this model is that SEO is usually a long-term effort, and the positive outcomes can sometimes take a while to kick-in.
Then again, it is also worth considering that some SEO work is not ongoing. Some businesses may only want one-off SEO projects to be performed. By-project SEO is a good idea for businesses looking to see the value of SEO in a specific time-frame – for instance, many SEO companies offer monthly plans, wherein goals and outcomes will be established alongside the timeframe. Having this timeframe-limited project is where hourly pricing is a good idea for SEO.
SEO on a budget
But, as mentioned above, SEO is generally a long-term effort, and there is only so much a business can hope to achieve in a relatively short timeframe such as a month. Some business may choose to use the resources they have in-house, as well as hiring an expert, to create their own SEO taskforce. Many businesses, such as TechQuarters, an IT services company London businesses regularly discover thanks to their SEO campaigns, were able to use this strategy, and achieve an effective SEO strategy without breaking the bank. The key to doing this, according to TechQuarters, is to plan and prioritize with consideration to your budget – there is no such thing as a one-size fits all SEO strategy, which means each individual business must start from scratch, and think carefully about their approach.
- Identify where your budget can go
If you have a small budget, you need to accept that there will be some areas that you will experience limitations. For instance, a small budget for SEO means there is only so much time you can dedicate per month to it; a small budget will of course also mean fewer resources, and potentially less knowledge and expertise at one’s disposal – as hiring SEO experts will be difficult.
- Look for effective, free solutions
To circumvent those budgetary limitations, a business should look to fill the gaps with free, or cheap, tools for SEO. There are plenty out there – tools that help you track rankings, identify backlinks, and analyze data and traffic. One might think that SEO tools always cost money, but the reality is that many tools charge for ease of use, and it is possible for businesses to find SEO tools that are free, that are simply more labor intensive than their premium counterparts.
- Identify your Strengths
As mentioned earlier, if you are choosing to perform SEO in house, you will certainly need SEO talent within the organization. This is why many businesses are choosing to hire talent to influence their primary marketing strategies – this is generally a good step, as business is becoming more and more digital across sectors. When doing this, a business must also identify what strengths they already have. For instance, a business might have an excellent web development team, or talented copywriters. A business might already have local or industry recognition that makes link-building easier, or allows them to accrue positive reviews on search engines. Knowing your strengths is important to building your SEO strategy.
- Manage expectations
Unfortunately, one of the keys to SEO on a budget is managing expectation for what can be achieved. You might have grand expectations about boosting your website’s rankings, and directing floods of organic traffic to it, all for a nominal fee – the reality, however, is that you must have a clear idea of what you can realistically achieve, using predominantly free tools, and a limited budget. This includes what kind of SEO activity you are able to achieve – for instance, large-scale outreach campaigns or rebuilding your site will likely be impossible on a small budget.